MP meets anxious Heads and Governors of West Devon Primary Schools

Geoffrey Cox, MP for Torridge and West Devon, met anxious head teachers and governors from five local primary schools last week to discuss the implications for West Devon's schoolchildren of worsening budgetary restrictions.

The MP, whose own son attended a West Devon primary school, was briefed by the principals on some of the practical, daily difficulties that shrinking budgets and under funded government initiatives, which absorb disproportionate amounts of time and resources, impose on local schools; for example, staff are being cut, experienced and proven teachers are increasingly being replaced by newly qualified teachers, and teaching assistants are expected to cover classes for longer.

Geoffrey Cox said: "As was made vividly plain to me during the meeting, Devon's primary schoolchildren are being failed by Government policies. More and more unrealistic demands are being made of primary schools to obey diktats and "initiatives" from on high imposed by central government without regard for the effect on their core function of providing an excellent education for children.

In addition, the fast growing disparity in education funding between Devon and the national average, now some £359, and the third lowest in England, is beginning to eat into the ability of these dedicated teachers and governors, to provide a basic education worthy of all our children, and is a further indication that only a change of government will bring the freedom, financial stability, and improved outlook that our local primary schools in Torridge and West Devon deserve."

The West Devon and Torridge MP, who will be meeting several other local head teachers, as well as school governors, during the parliamentary recess, told those present that he would urgently raise the points discussed with the Secretary of State for Education, Ed Balls, and would continue to press the Government vigorously on the issue both before and after parliament resumes.

Surgery Dates

Geoffrey holds regular surgeries. To book an appointment please click here or call 01822 612925.

Saturday 14th September
Holsworthy, Tavistock

Saturday 28th September
Bideford, Torrington