Scottish Ministers refuse to commit to education proposals including support for LGBTI+ pupils and “poverty-proofing” of schools

Ross Greer MSP, Education spokesperson for the Scottish Greens, tonight expressed disappointment after Scottish Ministers refused to commit funding to a series of education proposals including support for LGBTI+ pupils and the “poverty-proofing” of schools.

In this afternoon’s Holyrood debate, Mr Greer urged investment in alleviating poverty in schools by providing greater assistance towards the cost of meals and uniforms. He also sought assurance that schools will begin to monitor and tackle homophobic, biphobic, and transphobic bullying – a key ask of the TIE campaign - and on supporting young people with Additional Support Needs.

Ross said:

“Today the Greens outlined proposals to improve education and the lives of our young people. It’s disappointing that the cabinet secretary did not commit to funding these measures. 

“Young people have experienced bullying at school based on who they are and too many have been driven to self-harm or to attempt suicide. There’s an essential need to provide teacher training on LGBTI+ education, just as there is to provide more training support the 1 in 4 school pupils with additional support needs. 

“It’s also clear that the Government needs to do much more to poverty-proof our schools, starting with a response to the EIS union’s Face up to Child Poverty campaign. As 1 in 5 children in Scotland lives in poverty, schools must be supported in the help they provide their pupils.

“All parties agree on the principle of high quality education for everyone. The issue is how we believe it is achieved. Greens will continue to put forward constructive suggestions to ensure all young people and teachers get the support they need.”