Show us the books

28th July 2000 at 01:00
I APPLAUD Judith Gillespie's letter (TESS, July 21) and support the two points she makes.

One is that while funding has been found for new projects such as classroom assistants, core funding has been reduced. The budget presented to our school board last term once again showed that money will have to be vired from staffing in order to pay for toilet paper and telephone calls.

We are also afraid that funds for extras will not be consolidated and that in future years it will not be possible to maintain the new resources or retain the task force teachers and assistants.

The othr is that no one was consulted over the choice of new projects. Indeed the whole process of consultation over budgets is a sham. Budget figures are presented in isolation from previous expenditure. There is neither evidence that funds previously allocated to a cost centre were actually spent nor any basis for comparison with previous years.

I do not understand why it is beyond the wit or will of finance departments to present A4 summaries of budgets and previous years' expenditure as is normal practice of charities and companies.

David Hill

Relugas Road, Edinburgh

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