Education spending announcement welcomed
Sinn Féin Education spokesperson Chris Hazzard has welcomed the statement from the Minister of Education outlining his strategy for spending within education in the coming years.
Mr. Hazzard stated,
“I welcomed the announcement by the Minister that £30 million will be allocated in tackling disadvantage over the next few years.
“This stems from an independent report commissioned by the Minister which identified that more money needs to be targeted at tackling education deficiencies in areas suffering from deprivation.
“The Minister also announced an extension of the free school meals criteria, meaning that an additional 15,000 post-primary pupils will have access to this entitlement for the first time. I also welcome that more families will be able to attain uniform grants thus relieving financial pressure on families especially those with multiple children at school.
“It is important that all our children regardless of social class, religious or sexual orientation are given an equal chance to attain academic excellence.
“The Minister’s decision not to accept the recommendation to end the extra financial support given to small schools will also come as a great relief to many rural and isolated communities. We need to move towards a more sustainable schools estate but this must be done in a carefully planned way and to simply end the small schools support would have led to great instability in the education sector.”