Cuts to Education in Our Area

Published at: April 14, 2017 1:23 PM

I'm not sure if Parliament has ever seen children dancing Gangnam style in its corridors before, but that's what I ended up doing with pupils from St Joseph's Castleford when they visited Parliament this week. We had a great discussion about how the House of Commons works, and how new laws are made but when the last question was about Strictly, none of us could resist having a quick go.

I’m not sure if Parliament has ever seen children dancing Gangnam style in its corridors before, but that's what I ended up doing with pupils from St Joseph's Castleford when they visited Parliament this week. We had a great discussion about how the House of Commons works, and how new laws are made but when the last question was about Strictly, none of us could resist having a quick go.

 

I've always seen visiting local schools or meeting up with them if they visit Parliament as a great part of the job and a chance to champion education for our future.

 

But that's what makes it so shocking to hear about the big cuts the Government is planning for education in our area. Some schools will be losing hundreds of thousands of pounds - the equivalent of over £700 per pupil.

 

The Tories have decided to change the funding formula and shift money round the country, and the budget is being squeezed too. But our area already gets less funding for schools than many others and now we are being even more badly hit.

 

I’ve been told that some of our local secondary schools could even be forced to cut up to a dozen teachers to make ends meet if this goes ahead.

 

Already Head Teachers across the country are cutting back on new equipment. Surveys show that the cuts are resulting in fewer clubs, a narrowed curriculum, less support for children with mental health issues, crumbling buildings, reduced access for children to IT based learning and no new textbooks or planners.

 

It’s not fair on our children. The education they get now affects their future for decades to come. I don't want to see the clock turned back to overcrowded classes, over stretched teachers or outdated equipment.

 

I've contacted all our local schools in Pontefract, Castleford, Normanton and Knottingley to see how hard they will be hit.   Labour MPs across the country are campaigning to halt these cuts and reforms. The Government must not turn their back on areas like ours or on our children's future. Westminster does a lot to welcome children to visit but that's not good enough if in reality they are letting children down.

 


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