- Georgia Cruickshank, Labour's spokesperson on Children and Families Services on Dundee City Council

Classrooms and staffrooms have been severely hit by the effect of the SNP Government’s policies on education.

SNP First Minister Nicola Sturgeon has claimed that it was her “defining mission” to “close the attainment gap in education – to ensure equal chances for all children”

But her “defining mission” is facing hard times because her very own SNP Government has reduced spending on schools drastically.

It now stands at £400 million less per year than it was in 2010.

Is it any wonder that morale amongst overworked teachers has plummeted ?

John Swinney was given the task of ensuring that Nicola Sturgeon’s “defining mission” succeeded.

Instead the SNP’s Education Bill was abandoned.

It didn’t get any better when this week the EIS teachers’ union gave their support to parents who are campaigning for a  boycott of controversial tests for pupils in primary 1 classes.

On “The Red Robin “ website  , Richard Leonard, leader of the Scottish Labour Party, took up the issue of Scottish National Standardised Assessments for primary school pupils.

It said :

“These tests have described by the educational charity Upstart as an ‘adverse childhood experience.’

“Richard Leonard quoted a primary teacher from Edinburgh, who said the tests do nothing to improve attainment and waste valuable teaching time.

‘Scotland’s teachers have told me how young confident children are “crushed” by these tests and there have been reports of children being driven to tears.’ he said.

‘The educational charity Upstart says these tests are not only pointless and highly counterproductive but worse they are an ‘adverse childhood experience’.

‘At SNP conference John Swinney claimed that we are seeing the start of a renaissance in Scottish education. This ‘renaissance’ is driving primary school children to tears.'

The Scottish Labour Party has already set out where it stands on education :

“Today, despite the efforts of our hardworking education staff and the talents of our young people, we struggle to match those achievements, and have seen many other countries overtake us.

“The latest international surveys show Scotland falling behind in maths, science and English.

“The Scottish government’s own surveys also show a decline in literacy and numeracy.

“The SNP government, just like the Tories in England, has failed to invest in education.

“Labour will create an education system fit for the 21st century across the UK. This will mean more money for education in Scotland, which we would use to transform Scotland’s education system and ensure that all our young people can reach their full potential.”

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