SCHOOLS face the worst funding cuts “since the 1970s,” teachers warned as they prepared for today’s national walkout against Tory education plans.
The strike has been called following mounting financial pressure on schools and the “deregulation of teacher terms and conditions” resulting from the push to turn every school into an academy.
Schools Minister Nick Gibb caused uproar in the Commons yesterday when he suggested leaving teacher supply to the “free market.”
NUT acting general secretary Kevin Courtney said: “Schools are facing the worst cuts in funding since the 1970s.
“Class sizes going up, school trips reduced, materials and resources reduced, and subjects are being removed from the curriculum.“Teaching posts are being cut or not filled when staff leave.”
In Parliament, new shadow education secretary Angela Rayner condemned the “crisis in the teaching workforce” that had seen “almost 50,000 teachers quit this year,” which she said was a record.
She demanded Mr Gibb apologise for his earlier accusations of “scaremongering.”
Mr Gibb accused Ms Rayner of “talking down the profession.” When pressed by SNP MP Carol Monaghan, he said “the free market will ensure” that teachers were paid enough to stay.
And he attacked the turnout of “under 25 per cent,” saying he “agreed” with tiny scab union Voice’s leader Deborah Lawson, who branded the walkout a “futile gesture.”
Mr Gibb also dodged a question from fellow Tory Rehman Chishti about keeping parent governors, saying it was up to schools to decide.