Honeyball’s Weekly Round-Up

Labour Party

Tens of thousands of school children are missing out on their first choice of primary school because of a classroom squeeze figures have revealed.

This year 10,315 children were affected and the squeeze has become so bad that the Mirror reported last week some pupils are being taught in makeshift or previously disused buildings.

The figures were released by 55 local authorities under Freedom of Information rules which also found that it was up from 9,287 children who lost out last year.

Labour’s Shadow Education Secretary Stephen Twigg, who compiled the figures, warned that if the pattern was repeated across the country, the number of pupils missing out would be as high as 28,494.

Twigg said in an interview with the Mirror: “Labour will allow good local councils to create new schools to deal with this issue. The Tories slashed the budget for school buildings by nearly 60%.

“They are also setting up new schools where there are already enough places, wasting millions.”

His statistics revealed that 490 in London’s Brent are being taught in temporary rooms.

You can read the article and the shocking statistics in full here.

Yesterday it was revealed the west coast main line rail franchise bid debacle could have been avoided if the government had not cancelled an external audit to save money.

In addition it could now end up costing the government up to £100m, while had a financial audit been carried out it would have cost no more than £1m.

The Observer also revealed that three members of the Professional and Commercial Services Union (PCS), who have been suspended by the DfT for their role, are angry that they have been made scapegoats for ministerial mistakes.

PCS general secretary Mark Serwotka told the Observer: “Having cut resources to the bone, in the name of austerity, ministers have shamefully sought to blame civil servants.”

You can read the full story here.

The Telegraph has begun a regular column, The Secret Diary of a Board Babe. It’s designed to show the challenges women in senior positions face.

The anonymous writer sits on the executive board of a multinational company with more than 10,000 employees.

The telegraph states that her weekly blog reveals the ups and downs of being a woman at the top in a corporate environment.

You can read her first and also most recent article here.