Children deserve reform at once

20th October 2000 at 01:00
ALAN Parker suggests that when "transparency" in funding is eventually achieved it might show that "present inequalities are not as unfair as some now believe".

Here in Stockport we try to reconcile the needs of a borough containing the 10th most deprived ward in Greater Manchester with a spending assessment per pupil pound;871 lower than that enjoyed in Ealing. For us the debate is a bit more urgent.

The Government has at last accepted the unfairness of the current Standard Spending Assessment structure. Mr Parker may well be right in surmising that no proper eplacement can be fully worked up before 20034 at the earliest.

For the many thousands of children disadvantaged by a now discredited system even a three-year wait is unacceptable. That is why the F40 group, including my own, will be pressing ministers for interim steps towards the Green Paper objective of "levelling up".

I am advised that there is no fundamental obstacle to such a move. Children in this authority deserve nothing less.

Councillor Mark Hunter

Chair of education committee

Stockport Metropolitan Borough


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