From: Coun Peter Gruen (Lab), Deputy Executive Member for Regeneration, Transport & Planning, Leeds City Council.
HEAD TEACHERS are by and large a sensible lot, aren’t they? Of course they will stand up for their school because they have pride in the pupils, the staff and the community they serve (The Yorkshire Post, September 27).
So when head teachers organise a march on Downing Street we should sit up and take notice and ask why.
We accept that schools will always want more resources, smaller class sizes, better teaching and learning spaces etc.
But something fundamental is going wrong right now and head teachers are right to call it out. I have been involved in schools for a long time and yes, there were very difficult times in the 1980s and 90s when budgets were very tight and we could hardly mend the roofs, but in general since then the situation was much improved.
Not so now! Let’s not trade statistics, but just look at reality. Class sizes are going up, support staff numbers are going down, experienced teachers are leaving, fewer of them want to become heads and budgets are now precarious, going on dire and looming ahead is a disaster.
Three-year budget forecasts see leaders having to make not just difficult but very detrimental decisions for their pupils and staff. There is no cover for inflation, pensions, pay increases and costs such as utilities and others are rising much faster than inflation. That’s the simple truth.
This is why we should all support the heads in their demand that all schools are funded properly and fairly.
From: Frankie Farfield, Bawtry Road, Tinsley, Sheffield.
IT is so wrong that libraries have been denigrated in the way they have in Sheffield in recent years. And this isn’t just to do with austerity.
It would not cost anything for the city’s Labour MPs and councillors to lobby the Government to reinstate library standards in England or prioritise funding for libraries over vanity projects of no value like the Tour de France or visits to China.
From: Barrie Crowther, Walton, Wakefield.
ANYONE watching the ITV news reports on Venezuela can be left in no doubt what the result of Jeremy Corbyn’s blueprint for Britain will entail. Complete economic meltdown, starvation, anarchy. Beware of this Marxist rabble who masquerade under a Labour banner.