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YOUR VIEWS: Highland Council fails to declare 'school emergency'

By Gregor White

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The poor state of Charleston Academy.
The poor state of Charleston Academy.

The “business as usual” approach at Highland Council has blamed the war in Ukraine, Brexit and a former Prime Minister to avoid declaring a “school estate emergency” despite having the worst education buildings in Scotland. A motion rejected by the SNP-Independent administration, called for the declaration of a “school estate emergency” and an emergency action plan.

“Schools have been a state for years can’t blame Liz Truss, Ukraine or even Brexit as it was a shambles well before that. It’s years of underfunding and neglect, a lot to do with the local councillors... plenty money to spend on pointless projects, functions and expenses and the list goes on, but no money for anything else, absolute joke of a council, but why would the councillors care, most are a bunch of geriatrics with no kids to worry about, so doesn’t affect them, does it? Folk need to start voting differently to get change that’s needed.” – Wayne Sutherland

“Wayne Sutherland, anybody can stand for the council but few do. Why? Well, it’s a boring job, you have to work evenings and weekends, the pay’s c*** and you instantly become a target for social media trolls. Personally, I wouldn’t do it. Would you? But what’s your alternative?” – Lorraine Mann

“Looks like somebody was not focusing on what they were elected to do.” – Gerry Reynolds MSc

“Poor quality of education or poor standard of buildings?” – Charles Bannerman

“Shocking outcome.” – Moira Finlayson

“Across Scotland, just nine per cent of schools fail to achieve grade A ‘good’. In Highland, over 80 per cent of our schools (yes, nine times as many) fail to classify as ‘good’. No one can say we do not need to improve our school estate. As a first step, everyone needs to accept that we have a problem. It is astonishing to see Cllr [Emma] Knox and others voted that we do not have an emergency that needs sorted. SNP councillors need to drop party political loyalties that make them deny we have a problem, that Scottish Government funding has been insufficient for our far flung area. It is just silly to blame the UK government, Brexit, Ukraine, or Liz Truss for allocation decisions made at Holyrood.Councillors, even SNP, should have united and called for additional resources to address the disparity between the Highland school estate and the rest of Scotland. Councillor saying we do not have a problem here ARE the problem. Such loyalty to their party in government in Holyrood is damaging to the futures of our pupils.” – Donald MacKenzie, Inverness

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