Fight over North Lanarkshire classroom assistants and breakfast clubs continues

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The row over classroom assistants and breakfast clubs in North Lanarkshire continues to rumble on.

On Monday the council’s provost rejected a motion from the SNP’s education spokesman Tom Johnston which sought to maintain the current level of classroom assistants.

Councillor Johnston said: “The many classroom assistants, teachers and parents who have contacted me and other councillors over the past few weeks since this decision was announced will be devastated at the Labour Provost – elected by the key votes of Tory Councillors – rejecting this motion. She gave no reason for rejecting the motion.

“Classroom assistants only discovered on May 19 that 198 posts were to go. The first cuts start on June 2.

“When jobs disappear within a fortnight,Labour and their Tory allies have struck a new low in workforce relations in North Lanarkshire.

“I hear that staff have already received their dismissal notices.”

However, Councillor Frank McNally, the education convener, said that the council was struggling to find a way to reduce its expenditure by £27 million, particularly as its last proposal, to use pupil equality funding to make up the shortfall, had been blocked by the Scottish Government.

“We are doing this in a way to prevent job losses with affected staff being redeployed on the same wages, terms and conditions as they have now.

“The review of breakfast clubs is still in progress, and we are looking to give head teachers the freedom to decide if their school would offer a breakfast club or if an alternative provision would be more advantageous to their own pupils.”