Protestors say Education Secretary not welcome in Birmingham
Education Secretary Michael Gove’s planned visit to Coppice Primary School in Sutton Coldfield Friday night attracted about two dozen protestors angry over government cuts to education.
The protestors accused Gove of hypocrisy for attending the opening of a school that was constructed under the Building Schools for the Future programme which he cancelled five months ago.
In July, Gove suspended construction on 715 new schools saying the BSF programme was "bureaucratic and wasteful...characterised by massive overspends, tragic delays, botched construction projects and needless bureaucracy."
Construction was allowed to continue on 706 schools with contracts already in place. In Birmingham, work is proceeding on 11 schools but another 13 projects have been cancelled.
Rob Kelsall of the National Union of Teachers said it’s shameful Gove has taken the liberty of visiting Coppice Primary School when so many other schools are doing without.
“Rather than revelling in the success of the previous administration ,what he should be doing is actually going to places like Sandwell where he promised to apologize or explain to the children in schools over there why he axed the building schools fo rhte futre project," Kelsall said.
In the Comprehensive Spending Review, the education budget was increased .1% from £35 billion to £ 39 billion but protestors said once the increase in the number of pupils is factored in it amounts to an overall cut of 2%.
"Our message to Michael Gove is education cuts will never heal and we urge him to rethink his stragegy and look to other methods of solving the economic woes of this country because its unfair that children’s futures, children’s education should suffer as a consequence", Kelsall said.
To see the entire interview with Rob Kelsall, check out our YouTube channel.