Archive for the ‘Devon County Council’ Category
Western Morning News – November 4, 2011
Cornwall will not get a penny from £500 million of Government schools cash to repair crumbling buildings.
Education Secretary Michael Gove yesterday announced more than 100 local authorities will share an extra half-a-billion pounds to ease over-crowded classrooms.
Plymouth City Council has been given £2.5 million, Devon County Council £1.9 million, and Torbay Council £500,000 to construct new buildings and make repairs. The Isles of Scilly receives £52,000.
But Cornwall Council is among 40 authorities to miss out completely, despite claims the county faces a £38 million maintenance backlog. Redbridge in London has been lavished with £28 million.
The cash will go some way towards replacing Labour’s Building Schools for the Future programme scrapped by the coalition Government in July last year.
Sixteen new or revamped school building projects were scrapped across the Westcountry against claims Labour pledged money that did not exist.
Mr Gove said yesterday local authorities not receiving a share of the cash had needs that are “not as severe as others”.
Westcountry Labour MP Ben Bradshaw hit out at the Westcountry getting an “insulting fraction of the overall pot”.
The Exeter MP said: “The incompetence of Michael Gove in the way he abandoned Labour’s Building Schools for the Future Programme has been breathtaking.
“Sneaking out this announcement on a Thursday to avoid the humiliation of being seen to have to cave in to those councils that took him to court is typical.”
Liberal Democrat councillor Graham Walker, Cornwall Council shadow cabinet member for schools, said the settlement was “enormously disappointing”.
He said: “With the backlog of maintenance work in schools at around £38 million and only a delegated budget of £2 million for next year, many Cornish children’s education will continue to be blighted.”
Around half of the money, which is on top of £800 million of “basic need” funding already allocated, will go to schools in London.
Of 25 planned projects to rebuild or refurbish schools across Cornwall, Devon and Somerset, 16 were stopped last summer.
In Devon, Chulmleigh School, Ilfracombe School, Marland Special School and Tiverton School were all stopped.
In Cornwall, the projects stopped included Camborne Science and Community College, Poltair School and Redruth School.
A spokesman for Devon County Council said: “This will go towards providing extra places for pupils in hotspots around Devon, particularly in Exeter.”