Labour and Tories vote to cut ASL posts in D&G

Local MSP Joan McAlpine has slammed Labour and Tory councillors for voting through proposals to cut 52 additional support for learning posts in Dumfries and Galloway.

Following a letter sent by Ms McAlpine the Children’s Commissioner yesterday wrote to the Council expressing concern over the proposals.

He suggested that the decision be delayed until further considerations are taken.

Ms McAlpine said:

“It’s absolutely appalling that Labour and the Tories have ganged up to force through these cuts to the education of vulnerable children. 

“This is despite the announcement from John Swinney yesterday giving £51m to councils to maintain teacher numbers and warnings from both the EIS and The Children’s Commissioner that the Additional Support Needs Cuts could harm children. Parents will be deeply disappointed and vulnerable children will suffer. The council’s own literature suggests that the policy could result in a rise in exclusions.

“Dumfries and Galloway’s grant allocation from the Scottish Government will rise from £292.3million in 2014-15 to £293.1 million in 2015-16. The allocation to Scottish Councils from the SNP Government is far more generous than that of their Counterparts in England and Wales.

“There is absolutely no excuse for this brutal behaviour by Labour and the Tories, particularly as they were offered alternatives by the opposition.

“Significantly Labour at Holyrood also voted with the Tories against an SNP budget yesterday which sees a record £12 billion invested in Scotland’s NHS and an additional £330 million for Scotland’s school infrastructure. They should be ashamed of themselves.”

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