Sinn Féin - On Your Side

£12.5 million for Education Budget

20 June, 2005

Commenting after the British Direct Rule Education Minister Angela Smith announced a cash injection of £12.5m into the education budget, Sinn Féin spokesperson on education issues Michael Ferguson said:

"Last week a Sinn Féin delegation led by Gerry Adams met with the Education Minister Angela Smith to impress upon her the impact that the devastating education cuts were having on the sector. This morning Angela Smith has announced a cash injection of £12.5m. This is obviously welcome and is a departure from the do nothing attitude of the previous Minister Barry Gardiner.

"It must be noted however that an injection of £12.5m will not bridge the current funding deficit. It stands between £30m and £38m. What is required and required urgently is for an end to the tinkering with the system and for a proper education budget to be put in place which will address adequately the educational needs of our children.

"At a time when the British government is investing heavily in the education system in England it is presiding over savage cuts in our own system, this approach is completely unacceptable. Sinn Féin will continue to lobby the British government to adequately address the obvious deficits which currently exist within education funding in the six counties. The mess which has been made of education funding by the British Direct Rule system is a symptom of a wider problem where the six counties is being run by part time British Ministers with little or no knowledge or responsibility to the people who live here." ENDS

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