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Savings of #163;70m targeted

Glasgow is expected to agree #163;50 million of savings next month, with major cuts to education and social work budgets.

The council has already agreed to implement almost #163;20 million of savings over the next two years but most departments have had to come up with a further cut of 5 per cent. Although social work and education have only had to deliver savings of 2.5 per cent, the size of their budgets means they will make up the lion's share of the #163;50 million cuts over the next two years.

The plans in the city include merging and moving some of the 27 specialist schools for children with learning difficulties and reducing the number of additional support for learning teachers to save #163;2.5 million.

A further #163;5 million will be saved by going ahead with the controversial decision to replace teachers in nurseries with child development officers, having one head across several nurseries and changing school timetables.

School maintenance will be scaled back to save a further #163;1.5 million, after-hours clubs reduced to save #163;100,000 and increasing the cost of a school let, saving a further #163;800,000.

School dinners will increase in price by one-third between now and August 2014 and nursery fees will be hiked by 10 per cent.

West Dunbartonshire Council, meanwhile, is looking to save almost #163;3 million. Proposals include increasing the qualifying distance for free school transport by a mile to save #163;187,000 and axing breakfast clubs to save #163;260,000.

emma.seith@tess.co.uk.

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