Local Liberal Democrats have voiced their concern at new figures, revealing that Haringey, despite Labour promises, is one of only nine areas in the country where there are more pupils per class than 30 years ago.
The Times Educational Supplement figures show that average Pupil Teacher Ratios (PTRs) across England improved from 23.1 pupils per teacher in 1979 to 21.4 in 2009. However, Barking and Dagenham, Brent, Manchester, Sheffield, Newcastle, North Tyneside, South Tyneside and Haringey had the same or worse PTRs now compared to 1979.
Liberal Democrats have said that larger class sizes are another indication of Haringey’s unfair school funding system, that sees local children receiving over £1,000 less than children from neighbouring boroughs.
Lynne Featherstone, MP for Hornsey and Wood Green, has spearheaded a campaign for fair funding for Haringey children, which has received widespread support.
Gail Engert, Liberal Democrat Children and Young People spokesperson, comments:
“Every child deserves a fair start in life. Having fewer children in a class is vital, so that each child can have more attention from the teacher, but also so the teacher can pick up any problems, early on.
“I am very concerned that, whilst most other areas have improved their pupil to teacher ratio, Haringey has failed to do this.”
Lynne Featherstone MP adds:
“Cutting class sizes is a fundamental change that would make Haringey’s schools better, but because of Labour’s failure to address the school funding crisis, we now have some of the country’s biggest class sizes and see the knock-on effect that this has on our children’s education.
“Liberal Democrats, through our Pupil Premium, are committed to cutting primary class sizes to 20, to give every child the opportunity they deserve.”