Shadow Education Minister Angela Burns says the PISA figures are 'appallingly low.' The Conservative AM said they forecast a 'dreadful future' and make it 'a terrible time to be a teenager here in Wales.'
A report by the Wales Audit Office which shows a 24% increase in the costs of capping tuition fees in Wales has been described as 'shocking' and 'scathing' by Welsh Conservatives. Shadow Education Minister Angela Burns says:
Costs were grossly under-estimated and based on wildly unreliable variables, the policy continues to siphon off tens of millions of pounds to English universities and as the report clearly states, the cap on student numbers could deny Welsh-domiciled students the chance to study at Welsh universities.
Labour’s tuition fee subsidy has completely failed to widen access to higher education, has starved Welsh universities of vital funding and has made it more difficult for our higher education sector to compete in the global race.
– Angela Burns AM, Shadow Education Minsiter
Labour Ministers have now cynically tried to take the heat out of this report by rushing out their announcement of a review into HE funding, albeit with no terms of reference or detail and purely simple-minded responses to key questions.
We hope Labour Ministers will study the detailed recommendations of this report, learn the lessons of their sloppy, rushed policymaking and change the timetable of their drawn-out review of HE funding to permit a public debate ahead of the 2016 election.
The Conservatives have also criticised a Welsh Government decision to push ahead with plans to fine parents of persistent truants.
– Angela Burns AM, Shadow Education Minister
This is a lazy Labour government piling all its eggs into a basket of punishment – at the expense of support and liaison.
There is a real danger that these fines will hit the most vulnerable hardest and ignore the real reasons behind truancy.
I fear fines will stack up while behaviour remains largely unchanged.
Low school attendance can have a hugely detrimental impact upon a child and Labour Ministers should be working hard to tackle the problem at its root causes.
Shadow Education Minister Angela Burns has been talking about the commission into affordable childcare she's chairing for the Welsh Conservatives. Opposition leader Andrew RT Davies announced her appointment at the party's conference in Swansea.
Opposition leader Andrew RT Davies will use his conference speech in Swansea to announce that he's setting up a commission to look at ways of providing what he calls 'proper, affordable childcare.' He's appointed Shadow Education Minister Angela Burns to head the commission. He'll tell delegates:
I want parents across Wales to look at the Welsh Conservatives and see a party that “gets it” and is doing something about it.
I want young people across Wales to look at the Welsh Conservatives as a party leading the way for aspiration.
So today, I’m pleased to announce that my Shadow Minister for Education, Angela Burns has set up a Commission to look at how we can provide proper, affordable childcare.
– Andrew RT Davies, leader of the Opposition
Following on from some of the great work already undertaken by the UK Government in this field, Angela will work with professionals from representational organisations and business to see how we can help parents across Wales to be as aspirational for themselves as they are for their children.
Engagement in real policy development is the only way we can sell ourselves as the party that ‘gets it.'
Shadow Education Minister Angela Burns, who's AM for Carmarthen West & South Pembrokeshire, has welcomed the ministers' letter but says she has enormous concerns over the use of timeout rooms, in whatever form, throughout Wales. She's called for strong guidance on how children are disciplined.
– Shadow Education Minister Angela Burns AM
Children’s experiences at school help shape the adults they become and can deeply affect them in later life. Having seen the timeout room at the pupil referral unit in Pembrokeshire and heard evidence from children about other schools I fail to see how the use of a timeout room can be deemed appropriate in this day and age. The weapons of incarceration and public humiliation of children are shameful and should never play a part in the armoury of teaching.