Page last updated at 17:21 GMT, Tuesday, 9 February 2010

Parents hold rally against Edinburgh school cuts

Rally outside the City Chambers in Edinburgh (Pic: Lisa Summers)
The rally was held outside the City Chambers in Edinburgh

A rally has been held outside the City Chambers in Edinburgh in protest over school budget cuts.

Parents and children are opposed to councillors' plans to cut more than £2m from the annual education spending pot.

They hope the rally, held on the Royal Mile, will persuade the council to change its plans ahead of a vote on Thursday.

The annual budget for the city's schools is more than £200m with plans for 1% being cut from April.

Some parents fear cuts would lead to fewer learning assistants and the end of specialist teachers in music, drama, art and PE.

They also believe building repairs could be delayed and there could be fewer books and learning materials.

The strength of feeling among parents is intense, people really have had enough
Franck Bergeret
Parent

Franck Bergeret, father-of-three and parent representative at Bruntsfield Primary in Edinburgh, said: "Education should be the last thing the council ever considers cutting.

"The strength of feeling among parents is intense, people really have had enough.

"Money spent on our children's education is money invested in our future.

"I cannot imagine how we can survive these cuts let alone deliver the curriculum for excellence."

Marilyne MacLaren, Edinburgh City Council education leader, said: "I have been working to reduce the impact of this difficult financial situation on our schools since we received proposals in November.

"Last year we protected schools from cuts and I am pleased that this year we have been able to bring savings down to just 1%, which is far less than in other areas of the council.

"We will also increase the school supplies and services budget for the second year running by £250,000, an important budget which had been neglected for 10 years."



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