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Massive rise in super-sized primary classes shows need to cancel school cuts - Farron

June 29, 2017 3:49 PM

SchoolNew figures published today reveal a massive increase in the number of primary school children studying in classes of more than 30 pupils over the last two years. South Lakes MP Tim Farron has accused the Conservatives of treating children like "battery hens" and insisted that the government must cancel the planned cuts to school budgets.

In Cumbria, one in ten children are now being taught in a class of over 30. This equates to over 2800 children, an increase of 13% compared to two years ago.

This overcrowding is set to worsen as schools face a further budget squeeze. Research by the Education Policy Institute suggests that, between 2016-17 and 2019-20, primary schools will face an average real terms loss of £74,000. This is the equivalent of almost two teachers.

Tim's survey of Head Teachers in his constituency also reveals a bleak picture, with many schools facing staff cuts over the next few years unless there is a change in policy.

Tim said: "This Conservative government is treating our schoolchildren like battery hens. It is betraying the next generation.

"Thousands of children across Cumbria are being taught by overworked teachers in overcrowded classrooms, but Theresa May doesn't care.

"Conservative cuts will mean class sizes will only grow larger as schools are forced to lay off more teachers in the years ahead.

"The government must rethink these heartless and short-sighted cuts to our schools.

"Theresa May found £1bn for the DUP to cling onto power, she can find the cash to protect school budgets and keep class sizes down."