Friday, January 14, 2011

Hugh Henry MSP for Paisley South has joined with Wendy Alexander MSP for Paisley North to protest the scandal of replacing primary school teachers with unqualified sessional staff he called on Alex Salmond to use his influence to stop Renfrewshire Council replacing qualified teachers with unqualified staff.

Mr Henry said:

"As a former Minister for Education and teacher, I know and value the contribution made by qualified teachers. In Scotland we fought long and hard to create a professional and qualified teaching work force. Renfrewshire Council's proposals will dilute the contribution made by skilled and trained teachers. This could be the thin end of the wedge for education in Scotland. We could see Councils trying to save money by replacing qualified teachers with cheaper, unqualified staff and even volunteers. Despite comments to the contrary, the Director of Education confirmed to councillors in a briefing that volunteers might be used.

This should not be a political debate. I thought that there was a consensus in Scotland that our children should be taught by qualified teachers. The losers, if this is allowed to go ahead will be our children and Scottish Education.

Mike Russell should be standing up for Scottish education, but sadly he does not appear to doing so. I know Alex Salmond has real influence over the SNP Councillors in Renfrewshire and that's why I have written to him to ask him to use that influence to bin this short sighted and dangerous proposal from Renfrewshire Council.

It's time to put our children first."

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