Press release

‘We Are at Breaking Point’ – Leeds North West Schools Respond to MP’s Survey

Date: 09.01.19 | in: Education | Tags: , , , ,

Alex Sobel has today published his survey of primary schools in Leeds North West. The results paint a harrowing picture of the effects the current Government are having on the quality of education provision for young people in the area.

Seven schools responded to Alex Sobel’s survey, covering communities across Leeds North West including Otley, Yeadon, Cookridge, Pool, Weetwood and Headingley.

All of the schools surveyed experienced the need to make some form of cuts since 2015, with over 57% being forced to make staffing cuts due to funding pressures. 86% have had to reduce the number of books and amount of educational equipment made available to students.

More than half of schools have had to let teaching assistants go and the same amount have also had to make cut-backs to cleaning and maintenance services, potentially putting children at risk. All of the respondents expected further cut-backs to be made in the future.

With 43% of the schools experiencing a rise in pupil numbers and 100% of respondents either dissatisfied or very dissatisfied, it is uncertain how schools will take on the extra family support obligations created by the cutting back of council services elsewhere.

One respondent to the survey said:

“We cannot continue to hit the DfE’s expectations for pupil achievement and take more pupils, with less staff and resources. We are at breaking point in this profession. As the council Continues to make cuts in other areas, more is put onto schools. We cannot provide the support that is needed for families without the funding to do so.”

Another said:

“As a school with very few pupils eligible for Pupil Premium Funding, we struggle to make ends meet and to enrich the curriculum of all our students. I know that other schools in Leeds have so much money, they don’t know what to do with it all. How are we providing a fair, equal education for all pupils in all schools?”

Alex Sobel MP

Alex Sobel MP

Alex Sobel said:

“I am grateful to the schools in my constituency for taking part in this survey but am appalled by the results. Every school is experiencing cut backs, and this has a direct impact on children’s education and wellbeing. The fact that all of the schools felt either dissatisfied or very dissatisfied with their funding speaks volumes.”

“These funding pressures are in the face of higher pupil numbers and, as council budgets have also been slashed every year since 2010, schools have had to pick up the slack from funding cuts elsewhere.”

“We know that these pressures are driving good teachers out of the profession. It is about time that this Government listened to those professionals and heard first-hand about the problems that their disastrous education policies are causing. I look forward to the election of a Labour Government which will put education at the heart of our communities, providing them with the investment they need to survive and thrive.”

Please see link to full survey here: School Survey

Adel and Wharfedale Labour Campaign against School Cuts in their area

Adel and Wharfedale Labour Campaign against School Cuts in their area

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