No kid gloves

The spats between SNP and Labour councillors on North Lanarkshire Council are, as we have oft reported, not a pretty sight. Usually the SNP members manage to hold a party line, even if they are frequently gubbed by the Labourites. But last week's education committee meeting revealed a major philosophical schism in the nationalist ranks.

Councillor Murray - no, not the estimable ex-provost Gordon of hat ilk, but his wife Margaret who also represents a Cumbernauld seat on the council - objected strongly to a Labour man describing school pupils as "kids". "Their parents are not goats," proclaimed councillor Murray, only to witness the party line being rent asunder minutes later when SNP group leader Richard Lyle referred to children as, you've guessed it, the offspring of goats. No kiddin'.

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