May 10 2012 by Mhairi Macfarlane, Harrow Observer
LABOUR-run Harrow Council is about to launch an ambitious primary school modernisation programme.
Harrow has always had an excellent reputation for high performing schools – indeed thanks to the hard work of our teachers and support of parents, our schools have consistently performed well in national league tables.
Under the last Labour government, extensive investment in education was championed through the Building Schools for the Future Fund, which enabled us to rebuild Whitmore High School and meet the desire of parents and students for more choice of post 16 education.
This transformed the learning environment in our high schools and means we no longer lose some of our brightest and best students to schools outside the borough.
A similar scheme had been developed for primary schools, but unfortunately this was axed by the current Tory-led government leaving many in a poor state of repair.
Harrow Council is now turning its attention to its own programme for modernising primary schools, which I believe is absolutely the right thing to do. Harrow faces the same challenge as every other borough in London – a growing demand for places and the perfectly reasonable rising aspirations of families.
In April, the government announced it was allocating money for primary school modernisation, with £31 million going to neighbouring Brent for example.
Harrow’s settlement has not been determined, but the council has a responsible plan in place, following consultation with schools, which has identified where funding is most required. The government need to come to a decision as soon as possible, providing Harrow schools with both certainty and significant investment for the future.
I believe every child in Harrow deserves the best possible start in life, which is why I will be campaigning alongside Labour-run Harrow Council to deliver a programme of real modernisation in our primary schools.
MP for Harrow West