Fears over school places provision


Paul_Nuttall.jpegFears that schools are under intolerable pressure to provide places have been voiced by UKIP Deputy Leader and Education spokesman Paul Nuttall.

"Official figures predict that there may be around 900,000 extra pupils in England's schools over the next decade and this could push schools over the edge. Research by the Local Government Association shows it will cost £12 billion to create enough school places for all of these children. The government has so far pledged £7.35 billion to create more places, but that will not be enough.

"Although the UK birth rate fell in 2013 by the largest annual amount in nearly 40 years it had been rising in previous years and may well do so again. Of the 698,512 births more than a quarter were to mothers born outside the UK, an increase to 26.5% compared with 25.9% the previous year.

"Migrants coming to this country from outside the European Economic Area tend to have more children than most Brits and that is exacerbating the problem.

"It is primary schools that face the greatest pressure and it is essential that sufficient places are funded. Some schools will physically run out of space for extra classrooms and such development tends to eat into playing field provision, which is tragic as children need more not less exercise.

"The LGA is calling on the government to commit to funding the creation of school places and hand councils the powers to open new schools, for both primary and secondary-age pupils, before time runs out and that is something I wholeheartedly support.

"The Tories say it is the fault of the previous Labour government but instead of playing the blame game they need to urgently address the problem and properly provide for our children," said Mr Nuttall.

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