Lib Dems will invest £56 million to protect school funding in Hertfordshire
The Liberal Democrats have announced they will invest £55.8 million more in schools and colleges in Hertfordshire over the next parliament.
The funding for Hertfordshire, including the Stevenage constituency, would reverse cuts to frontline school and college budgets, protect per pupil funding in real terms and ensure no school loses out from changes to funding arrangem
£6.3 million of the funding would be spent on protecting the Pupil Premium, introduced by the Liberal Democrats to help the most disadvantaged children.
Barbara Gibson, Liberal Democrat Parliamentary in Stevenage, said:
"Children in Stevenage are being taught in overcrowded classes by overworked teachers - but Theresa May doesn't care.
"Under the Conservatives, funding per pupil is set to see the biggest cuts in a generation, while billions of pounds are being spent on divisive plans to expand grammars and free schools. Under the current funding formula, virtually all Stevenage schools are facing huge cuts and losing teachers.
"This extra £56 million of funding would ensure no school and no child loses out.
"We will reverse crippling Conservative cuts to school budgets and invest to ensure every child has the opportunity to succeed."
Liberal Democrat Leader Tim Farron said:
"A landslide for the Conservatives would allow Theresa May to take parents across the country for granted and cut our schools to the bone.
"Only the Liberal Democrats can provide the strong opposition Britain needs to stand up for Stevenage.
"Vote for the Liberal Democrats and you can change Britain’s future."
Notes to Editors
Barbara Gibson, Lib Dem candidate for Stevenage, will participate in an Education Question Time organized by Hertfordshire NUT at Barclay School on 5th June at 7pm.
When it comes to politics, I am an outsider. But I have become so fed-up with what I see as incompetence and indifference on the part of those who are supposed to be representing our interests that I decided it was time to step up. I believe our elected leaders should represent the best interests of our country, not play political games with our future. I was outraged with the complete ineptitude of David Cameron and the lies of the Leave campaigners, and am now horrified by the direction Theresa May has taken, barrelling towards a disastrous Hard Brexit. So I am standing as the Liberal Democrat candidate for Stevenage, to stand up for our future.
What can I bring to the role? With more than 25 years of business experience, much of it working with global companies, I have a track record of getting things done. I have managed large teams and big budgets, and also worked with small businesses and non-profits on shoestring budgets with volunteer teams. A few years ago I headed back to school to earn my PhD, and I now work primarily as a university lecturer teaching international business communication.
I am an immigrant to the UK, having come here from the USA in 2002. I proudly became a British citizen in 2011. I’ve lived in Hertfordshire for more than 14 years. Originally from Oklahoma, I grew up in a family of six children, where both my parents worked hard and barely made ends meet. I left home at 17 and worked several jobs at a time to support myself and put myself through university. Among the Oklahoma values that are core to my being are hard work, self-sufficiency, stick-to-itiveness and a down-to-earth approach.
Upon settling in my adopted home, I found an affinity for what I perceived to be core values of British culture, including fairness, tolerance, and reason. It was seeing the erosion of these values -- overwhelmed by the wave of nationalism, populism, racism, misogyny and homophobia that seems to be sweeping from America and across Europe -- that motivated me to take a more active role in politics. I knew I couldn’t just trust that someone else would sort things out. I knew that it was time to “be the change I wish to see in the world.”
The values I found in the Liberal Democrats fit with my own. They can be summed up in three words: Open, Tolerant, United.
Open means open-hearted, open-minded, forward-looking, modern, green, internationalist and pro-European.
Tolerant means diverse, compassionate and generous. We will always fight injustice and stand up for the underdog, the outsider, the individual, the minority and the vulnerable against the powerful.
United means we will always put the interests of the whole United Kingdom first. We reject the divisions in society, whether between young and old, urban and rural, leave and remain, or between regions and nations. We believe we are stronger – as communities, as a country and as a world – when we work together in our common interest.
If you share these values, I hope you’ll join me in fighting to change Britain’s future by voting for me on 8th June.
Barbara Gibson will be the Liberal Democrat candidate for the constituency of Stevenage at the General Election on June 8th 2017.
A university lecturer and business woman, Dr Gibson is a political outsider who believes the UK needs a stronger opposition party. In a surprise upset in last week’s local election, she unseated the Conservative incumbent to become Hertfordshire County Councillor for the Haldens division in Welwyn Hatfield, and will now lead the fight on behalf of the many residents of Stevenage who disagree with Theresa May’s hard Brexit.
“This election is a clear fight between hard-working local campaigner Gibson and the Conservatives. The other parties are effectively out of the race,” says her agent, Stephen Booth.
Gibson adds: “41 % of Stevenage constituency residents voted to Remain in the EU and many more oppose the reckless decision of this hard-right Conservative government to pursue a ‘Hard Brexit’. Only the Lib Dems here in Stevenage, Knebworth, Codicote, Datchworth and Aston are truly fighting her plans and fought to Remain."
“The Labour Party is in an absolute mess, fighting amongst themselves rather than acting as the effective opposition this country so needs.”
A recent internal poll by the Conservative party predicted they could lose the 27 seats they gained from the Lib Dems at the last election.
Tim Farron MP, leader of the Lib Dems said, “This election is your chance to change the direction of our country.
“If you want to avoid a disastrous Hard Brexit, if you want to keep Britain in the Single Market, if you want a Britain that is open, tolerant and united, this is your chance. Only the Liberal Democrats can prevent a Conservative majority.”
Barbara Gibson adds, “I will be campaigning and making the case that anyone who wants to avoid a disastrous Hard Brexit for Stevenage and for local jobs, the only party to vote for is the Liberal Democrats.”