Published: 12/02/2018 12:56 - Updated: 12/02/2018 13:15

SNP warn against 'savage' cuts to education in Moray


SNP co-leader Graham Leadbitter
SNP co-leader Graham Leadbitter
SNP councillors have claimed it is not too late for Moray Council to rethink upcoming "savage" cuts to the education budget.


The budget will be announced and debated on Wednesday morning at a meeting of the full council.

Speaking ahead of the debate, SNP opposition co-leader Graham Leadbitter said: "We have 48 hours to stop Moray education cuts.

"The SNP have proposed a balanced alternative budget that would halt the savage education cuts being proposed by the Tory/Independent Council administration.

"With £4million more available from the Scottish Government than was anticipated this is an opportunity to protect education services and still set a balanced budget.

"There is still a lack of strategy from the council’s administration and they have simply adopted a policy of slash and burn.

"I would urge people in Moray to use the next 48 hours to challenge the Tory and Independent administration to rethink their budget and stop the savage education cuts they are proposing."

The SNP says its alternative proposals would protect a range of education services that support vulnerable young people such as home school link workers, as well as keeping school librarians, school technicians and visiting specialists.

SNP councillors will also vote to protect funding for Moray Citizens Advice Bureau.

Other SNP proposals include plans to generate income for the council, and a management restructure to protect frontline service.

Moray’s MSP Richard Lochhead said: "It is unjustifiable that the Tories and Independents in power in Moray Council are not prepared to use the millions more than predicted level of funding to protect education.

"If these cuts go ahead to services which support some of our most vulnerable young folk, then the cost to Moray and to Moray Council further down the line will be much, much higher.

"In 48 hours the Council will have the chance to vote for an SNP budget proposal that protects education or a budget from the Tory and Independent administration that is short-sighted and damaging to Moray.

"I am urging people to make their voices heard to the Council’s administration, and I am urging the Council’s administration to listen and act on those concerns."

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