Raising the Bar ‘depressingly underwhelming’

Labour’s Education Spokesperson Cllr Jack Abbott has today described the renewal of ‘Raising the Bar’ as ‘depressingly underwhelming’, criticising a strategy which he argues gives little hope that Suffolk’s education system will ­improve.

The Conservative administration at Suffolk County Council today passed the 2018-20 Raising the Bar Strategy, a one-page document that they argue will deliver educational improvements in Suffolk.

However, Cllr Abbott criticised the lack ambition in the plan saying; “I question whether they truly believe in their own strategy anymore. This is a plan with no detail, no focussed ideas for improvement and no costings – it is half-hearted at best.

“They say they are passionate about improving Suffolk’s education system but allocate just 0.07% of their budget to this scheme against a back drop of real-term budget cuts, a teacher recruitment and retention crisis and continual failings in Key Stage 2.

“The original Raising the Bar document was commissioned by the RSA and showed a real commitment to changing education in Suffolk. This strategy document feels like a step backwards.

“The Tories will say their overall target of being in the top 25% of local authorities for education is ambitious but I say that if your plan to get there can fit on one side of A4 then these targets are merely platitudes.”

“We are now five years into this programme and children, parents and teachers have consistently heard Tories say that ‘there is still room for improvement’.

“We all want to see real improvement in our schools but the time for talking has to stop. We need a radical, robust, detailed plan which can deliver rapid improvement and we need it now.”



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