17 June 2009

Stevenson Delighted As Scottish Futures Trust Gets Set To Deliver Massive New School Building Programme

Banff & Buchan MSP Stewart Stevenson has welcomed the announcement that the Scottish Government is to deliver extensive new investment in Scotland’s schools through the Scottish Futures Trust. Education Secretary Fiona Hyslop has outlined plans to invest £1.25 billion in Scotland’s schools, in order to further reduce the number of pupils in unsuitable school accommodation.

The Scottish Government will provide around two thirds of the funding for new secondary schools and half of the funding for new primary schools, making new school construction projects far more affordable for Local Authorities and delivering around 55 additional new schools.

Commenting, Mr Stevenson said:

“I am delighted at the progress that the Scottish Government has made on delivering even more new schools for people across the country through the Scottish Future’s Trust.

“The previous administration promised to renew 100 schools between 2006 and 2009, but the SNP Government has already exceeded this target, with 150 school rebuilding or refurbishment projects completed to date, and over 250 will have been delivered by 2011. This new investment will go even further, funding around 55 brand new schools, thereby providing state of the art facilities for an additional 35,000 pupils across Scotland.

“Fiona Hyslop has stated that schools in the most need will be targeted for replacement and as such I strongly encourage Aberdeenshire Council to engage fully with the Scottish Government and COSLA to ensure that pupils here benefit from this new funding. This is a real opportunity to make a lasting change in the state of Banff & Buchan’s school estate and I hope that they will grasp it with both hands.

“When the SNP came to office in 2007 there were 260,000 pupils in poor classroom accommodation. That figure should be down to around 100,000 by 2011 thanks to measures that have already been taken and will drop by a further third to 65,000 thanks to this latest announcement. Working with COSLA and Local Authorities, the SNP Government is continuing to deliver real improvements for people in Banff & Buchan.”

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