Our Education System Is Crumbling. Something Must Be Done | Jack Johnston



School budgets are being pushed beyond breaking point. Yesterday, I was shocked to discover the effects that the Government's £3 billion real-terms cut will have on education. According to figures backed by NUT, ATL and NAHT, my local secondary school is set to lose over £1 million of funding by 2022, as well as a loss of £747 per pupil and a reduction of 25 teachers because of the Tory budget. At a primary school in Wandsworth, pupils are asked to vacuum classrooms at the end of the day because it cannot afford to pay for a cleaner, while the headmaster's husband is forced to do the school's plumbing for free. This picture of horror and austerity provides the evidence that things will only get worse. The NHS is crumbling, social care is falling apart, and education is next in line.

It's scary to watch this new funding formula being put into place. The pain of overcrowded classes, the absence of books and paper, and the printing "caps" are clearly not just qualities unique to my comprehensive, but are in place all over the country. Schools are being forced to request emergency donations from the poorest of families, just to pay for the "luxury" of a textbook or electricity. Heading for the steepest cuts to funding since the 1970s, the education system is on its knees, pleading for investment. Knowing the state of schools today, it is difficult to imagine what they will look like just five years from here.

A good education should not be a privilege. It is every child's right. 

Now, I look to Labour. The only light of hope in the gloom of the school system. For my local secondary school, they have promised an extra £185,000 to the budget and five more teachers. In an election, it is often said that our decision comes down to what's best for our family. Surely, the choice of whether pupils can thrive in school or not, could not be clearer. Don't we all want to give the best springboard in schools and allow future generations to have the best opportunities in life? Many teachers have spoken out about how they are managing the cuts ahead, their plans include: reducing IT classes (one of the most vital lessons in today's world), hiring non-specialist staff to teach A-Levels, and even shortening school days because they cannot afford enough teachers to cover the timetable. This can all be avoided.

After years of Conservative power, Theresa May will try and make you believe that this is the only way forward. That, somehow, empty bookshelves and deprived classes are acceptable. Without Labour insisting schools back onto the election agenda, my generation faces no future.

Austerity in schools is not inevitable and must be fought. As one of the world's richest nations, we should be able to deliver the best education, so that we can continue our success for years to come. We can either resume down the path of destruction and keep following Theresa May's weak and wobbly leadership, or we can invest in the future under a well-costed Labour manifesto. A good education should not be a privilege. It is every child's right.


Jack Johnston, Student Voices Writer
Our Education System Is Crumbling. Something Must Be Done | Jack Johnston Our Education System Is Crumbling. Something Must Be Done | Jack Johnston Reviewed by Unknown on 17:38 Rating: 5

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