When Conservatives at Suffolk County Council started on the process of abolishing Middle Schools 7 years ago, we warned that there would be major problems ahead. We knew that at some point the then Labour government would run out of money for new school buildings and that the council would be left to foot the bill.
We were also extremely suspicious that the figures they produced, comparing results from 3 tier with 2 tier schooling, did not take deprivation into account. We were concerned that the focus on re-organisation would take resources away from 2 tier areas. The position of Suffolk in the national GCSE league table tells its own story:
Primary school SATS show a similar picture. When we jointly ran the council the education of our children and young people was our top priority. We always made sure that any shortfall in government funding for education was made up from local resources. The Conservatives clearly did not feel the need to prioritise education in the same way. The budget for school improvement has almost halved. Our amendment to the Conservative budget this year and last included additional resources for school improvement. The amendment was rejected.
The latest phase of reorganisation will result in more split site schools. More than 1500 pupils are now being taught in temporary classrooms. The Conservatives have let down children and young people in Suffolk in a major way. It will damage both their future employment and health prospects. I wonder how they sleep at night?