Need Clear Thinking and Leadership from Education Minister says Russell

Commenting on the speech today (Friday) by Cathy Jamieson SNP Shadow Education Minister Mr Mike Russell MSP said that he agrees that McCrone becomes the foundation for a generation of stability in Scotland's schools but the Minister must accept that many of the difficulties with the settlement are due to failures from the Executive. Mr Russell said:

"I agree with the Education Minister that making sure the McCrone settlement becomes the foundation for a generation of stability in Scotland schools is essential.

"The Minister seems to forget however that many of the difficulties in implementing McCrone have come from the failure of the Executive. Such as failing to fully fund the agreement as promised, problems associated with the fair treatment of existing probationers and the pressure on schools surrounding the placement of induction year students.

"More importantly however is the fact that the Education Minister has once again demonstrated an inability to bring to the debate on Education the new and clear thinking and leadership that is so badly needed. Instead what we have had is moaning, jargon and a desire to blame everybody but herself.

"There is also no obvious attempt to engage with the big ideas of Scottish Education such as the widely recognised need for a radical reduction in class sizes, the urgent necessity to tackle problems of truancy, indiscipline and exclusion and the obvious requirements to simplify and clarify our national exam system.

"It is time that Cathy Jamieson lives up to her job or like England's Education Minister admits that she is unable to do it."

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