Harris Academy  : Government should pay for rise in council share

9 December 2009

Marlyn Glen has written to the new Education Secretary Mike Russell saying that the Scottish Government should finance in full any further rises in the councilís share of the cost of the refurbishment of Harris Academy.

This followed reports that the cost of the upgrade could rise from £18 million to £27 million.

If the share of the funding of the investment at Harris remains allocated at two-thirds of the cost coming from the Scottish Government and one-third from Dundee City Council, then the council's contribution could rise from £6 million to £9 million.

Ms. Glen said,

"The new Education Secretary can show parents in Dundee that things at the top have changed with a new Minister who's prepared to fund any £3 million increase of the councilís share from £6 million to £9 million in the Harris project entirely from Scottish Government finance.

"Harris will be the only school in Dundee to be included in the refurbishment-new build programme across Scotland.

"Parents and teachers at Harris have had to wait patiently over the past two and a half years for the school to be upgraded while the Scottish Government sought to find a role for its funding quango, the Scottish Futures Trust.

"Mr Russell can signal the beginning of a new approach in Scottish Education by guaranteeing that any further increase in the councilís share of a £27 million Harris project would be funded by his government department."

Mrs. Glen added that the council must receive an assurance that the Scottish Governmentís level of funding must be sufficient to prevent the council being forced to pay for its share of the refurbishment by delaying other projects across the city.


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