Education is a massive issue in this election and the teaching unions' "schoolcuts" website has been updated to reflect the main parties manifesto pledges.
Matt Lamb, Labour's candidate said "What the influential 'schoolcuts' website reveals is Labour is committing another £1.7milion funding to Wyre Forest schools equating to 59 more teachers. Education is a central theme in Labour's manifesto and is an absolute priority if we are to ensure our young people are educated and skilled enough to meet the global challenges in a post Brexit world. As someone in the teaching profession myself, I well understand the significance and importance of this commitment and welcome it so we can give our children the best possible start in life. Cuts in education have to stop because it limits the life chances of our children".
The last Tory Government enacted real term cuts to schools which failed to keep pace with inflation and rising student numbers, resulting in a narrowing curriculum, loss of staff, and schools begging parents for money. It also planned further proposals that would have seen £4.3million cut from Wyre Forest School budgets meaning we'd lose 114 teachers. The Tories latest Manifesto proposals for school funding mean we fare no better in Wyre Forest despite Mark Garnier's "fairer funding" assurances. According to the schoolcuts website, Wyre Forest will still lose £3.8million and 103 teachers under Tory plans.
Matt went on to say "So much for Tory Mark Garnier's promises, his fairer funding campaign has had zero real affect on Tory policy, the cuts are still happening, they're just a bit less, but still nonetheless devastating for our local schools. He has been totally ineffective in lobbying for our schools, and Wyre Forest needs an MP who can make a positive difference, not make things worse. I will champion education because I am passionate about it".
Overall, Labour is promising an extra £6.3billion to the country's schools and a reversal of Tory education cuts. That includes protection against Tory so-called "fairer funding" school losses and preserving free school meals as part of its £25billion education plan for schools, colleges, and universities. The Tory manifesto on the other hand still means schools face an £8.9billion cut in funding.
Locally, despite their national overall £7billion pledge, the LibDems proposals will mean a real term cut in Wyre Forest schools' funding of £2.2million and loss of 62 teachers, showing it is a plan that in reality will not really address core under-funding issues as costs and demand rises.
Wyre Forest Labour Comment:
Stephen Brown, Wyre Forest Labour's press officer said on behalf of local Labour activists "the proposals in all of the Parties manifestos show that the only party offering to give our children a secure future and decent education in life is Labour. What these figures show is that in Wyre Forest, a vote for the LibDems is still a vote for education cuts, and worse, it could let the Tories in through the back door with their more drastic and damaging education cuts. So, the only real choice in this election is between Labour and the Tories. What Labour offers is hope and aspiration, as opposed to Tory negativity, fear, and yet more cuts. It's time for a change."
You can now check for yourself what the Parties manifestos mean for your local school:
Wyre Forest Highlights:
Labour overall +£1.7million +59 teachers
Tory overall -£3.8million -103 teachers
LibDem overall -£2.2million -62 teachers
Labour +£247,032 +6 teachers.
Tory -£281,318 -7 teachers.
LibDems -£96,617 -2 teachers
Labour +£142,930 +4 teachers
Tory -£222,022 -6 teachers
LibDem -£76,059 -2 teachers
Labour +223,144 +5 teachers
Tory -£461,040 -11 teachers
LibDem -£271,807 -6 teachers
Labour +£88,485 +3 teachers
Tory -£172,465 -5 teachers
LibDem -£75,815 -2 teachers
Labour +18,220 +1 teacher
Tory -119,668 -3 teachers
LibDem -78,368 -2 teachers
Labour +£15,703 +1 teacher
Tory: -£70,652 -2 teachers
LidDem -£43,124 -1 teacher
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