Margaret Greenwood MP has spoken out about the “severe financial challenges” that Wirral primary schools are facing.
The Wirral West MP was speaking in Business Questions – a session which usually takes place weekly in parliament and provides an opportunity for MPs to put forward issues on which they believe the government should schedule time for a debate.
Her intervention comes following a meeting between Wirral MPs and headteachers representing local primary schools.
Margaret Greenwood said that the headteachers are facing “very difficult choices” and that they are “extremely concerned about how they will be able to pay staffing costs and heating bills.”
She raised one case of a local school that has invested in a set of fleeces for the children to wear in class because there is insufficient heating in the school, as the school cannot afford it.
Speaking afterwards, Margaret Greenwood MP said, “I am very concerned about the financial difficulties that Wirral primary schools are facing.
“The headteachers spoke of how hard it is going to be for them to heat their schools, buy resources and pay their staff the pay rises that they have been awarded.
“Some schools are facing heating bills which have increased significantly and they simply do not have the money to pay them.
“In one instance, a school has invested in a set of fleeces for the children to wear because the school cannot afford to heat the classrooms properly.
“This is a truly alarming state of affairs and I am very concerned about what this will mean for the health and education of young children in Wirral.
“When parents drop their children off at school in the morning, they have a right to expect that they will be well looked after – and that includes sitting in properly heated classrooms.
“I have called for a debate on this in parliament because I think it is vital that MPs are given the opportunity to hold the government to account on this issue.
“It is incredibly important that schools give children the very best start in life. They cannot do that if they do not receive the funds that they need.
“The government should listen to the evidence of headteachers and provide the resources that they need as a matter of urgency.”