16 May 2017
Commenting on the launch of the Labour Party manifesto for the 2017 General Election, Kevin Courtney, General Secretary of the National Union of Teachers, the largest teachers’ union, said:
“This manifesto puts down a marker on school funding and demonstrates that Labour is listening. The funding crisis affects 99% of schools and has forced head teachers to put banners up in playgrounds to alert parents to the risks of deep cuts and what it means for their child.
“Labour's manifesto increases the pressure on the Conservatives to drop their defence of school cuts and acknowledge the lack of public support for sacking teachers and teaching assistants, increasing class sizes and closing art, music, sport and drama facilities.
“The Labour manifesto widens the debate about how to mitigate the factors outside school that influence children's lives. Teachers will support measures to address inequality within society and welcome constructive strategies such as scrapping tuition fees and restoring the education maintenance allowance.
“Labour’s commitment to Sure Start, high quality Early Years education and universal joined-up services is a sign of policy which is grounded in evidence and experience. All candidates must engage with the urgent issue of the number of nursery schools and children’s centres closing up and down the country.
“If we are serious about giving every child access to an enriching and enabling education, we must guarantee proper investment across all sectors of education. The Labour Party manifesto reminds us that investment decisions are political choices.”