Barbara Keeley MP

LABOUR MEMBER OF PARLIAMENT FOR WORSLEY AND ECCLES SOUTH

Tory funding plans would wreck Wigan’s schools, Barbara says

BK in West CloisterBarbara has slammed Tory proposals to cut £4.5 billion from the Government’s Building Schools for the Future Programme, which would derail plans to rebuild schools across Wigan.

The Governments £45bn Building Schools for the Future (BSF) programme is rebuilding or refurbishing every secondary school in England over the next ten years. Cuts to the programme proposed by David Cameron would put the planned building improvements planned at risk. Only those areas already receiving BSF funding will be protected. Wigan is in the second phase of the building programme with work set to begin in 2012, and would therefore be directly affected if the Tory leader gets his way.

Ed Balls MP, Labour's Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families, said:

"These cobbled together Tory proposals will set-back school reform. They are based upon a £4.5 billion cut from Labour's Building Schools for the Future programme and the axe will fall on hundreds of schools in every part of the country, dashing the hopes of many thousands of pupils and teachers.

"It is this Government which is pursuing investment and reform, accelerating our Academies programme, promoting excellence for all pupils and tackling underperforming schools."

Barbara said:

“Because Wigan is included in a later phase of the Building Schools for the Future programme, these Tory proposals would cut out the funding needed for the rebuilding of Wigan’s secondary schools. In a recent debate on these issues, Tory MP John Redwood even argued that some of the best schools are in "old and tatty buildings.

“I believe that our children and young people should be taught in modern buildings with the best facilities. The Tory plans would threaten the future of schools on the Wigan side of Worsley constituency and I totally reject these Tory ideas. Under Tory Governments in the past, many of our school buildings were allowed to crumble and we don't want to go back to those bad old days for schools."

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