Tories slam Nats on ed­u­ca­tion spend­ing

Rutherglen Reformer - - News - Dou­glas Dickie

The Ruther­glen and Hamil­ton West branch of the Scot­tish Con­ser­va­tive Party have called for more money to be spent on lo­cal schools.

They say spend­ing on Scot­tish schools last year fell to its low­est level since 2009, drop­ping from £4.82bil­lion to £4.67bn.

Tay­lor Muir, who stood for the party at last month’s gen­eral elec­tion, said ed­u­ca­tion spend­ing in Eng­land had risen in com­par­i­son, along with teacher num­bers, which have dropped in Scot­land.

Mr Muir said the SNP had to take re­spon­si­bil­ity:“At a time when the schools bud­get in Eng­land has been pro­tected, th­ese new fig­ures re­veal an­other cut in fund­ing for schools in Scot­land. The cost of this is clear – in Eng­land the num­ber of full-time teach­ers has in­creased by more than 3000 be­tween 2010 and 2013. But in Scot­land, over the same pe­riod, the num­bers have fallen by around 1000.

“This is the price schools are pay­ing for the SNP’s fail­ure to take any re­spon­si­bil­ity for our schools sys­tem and un­der­take the re­forms that are nec­es­sary to turn it around.

“It’s not good enough for them to blame oth­ers – the cuts to spend­ing and the fall in lit­er­acy and nu­mer­acy stan­dards is hap­pen­ing on the SNP’s watch.”

But Bob Doris MSP, re­sponded, say­ing: “The fig­ures are de­signed to mis­lead as the Tories have com­pared‘net’ex­pen­di­ture on ed­u­ca­tion in 2014/15 with‘gross’ ex­pen­di­ture for pre­vi­ous years.

“Pro­vi­sional out­turn ex­pen­di­ture – ac­tual spend– is higher in 2014/15 than the pre­vi­ous year. It is also worth not­ing that spend­ing per pupil in Scot­land is sig­nif­i­cantly higher than in Tory-run Eng­land.

“Quite frankly it’s stag­ger­ing that the Tories have the au­dac­ity to com­plain about spend­ing lev­els in Scot­land given they have cut Scot­land’s bud­get by nine per cent since 2010 and only last week a UK Tory chan­cel­lor has de­cided to cut Scot­land’s bud­get by a fur­ther £107mil­lion this year alone.”

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