CHESHIRE East Council members reaffirmed their commitment to fighting for fairer funding last week, inviting a high school student to speak at a cabinet meeting.
Government proposals for a new national funding formula would see schools in the borough become the most poorly-funded in the country. A consultation period closed in March.
Will Bloor, Sandbach Boys’ School head boy, spoke at recent protest events and told councillors last Tuesday that the thought of schools being forced to cut activities was ‘sickening’.
He said: “Before I started high school in 2010, I didn’t have a lot of confidence in myself and my abilities. Going to Sandbach school changed my life.
“We as a public must fight for fairer funding for schools in east Cheshire. It’s truly a sickening thought that every child in east Cheshire will be denied the chances I had, to develop confidence, who they are and what they can bring to the world.
“The government may think these things are expendable, but to me they are what made me the person I am today.
“Children may understand how to pass an exam, but ask yourselves – is that what we want our education system to be?
“The Government needs to realise they have got their policy in east Cheshire fundamentally wrong.”
Will’s speech about the importance of a ‘rounded’ education was met with applause, and Cllr Rachel Bailey, leader of CEC, explained what had been done to oppose the Government cuts, including Fiona Bruce MP leading a congregation of headteachers and MPs to meet the schools minister in London.
Cllr Bailey said: “The consultation closed on March 22 and we await the outcome. I will write further to comment to the secretary of state that [Will] addressed our cabinet today so eloquently and the message is clear.
“It isn’t education in isolation. It is that rounded education that allows you to enjoy the best wellbeing, and the best opportunity, and deliver for your community wherever it may be going forward.”