Visit to Bearwood primary school

John Redwood visited Bearwood Primary on Monday 18th November. He was shown round all the classrooms, library and play areas by two memebrs of the Schools Council, who were most informative about the school.

He then spoke briefly about Parliament, the job of an MP, Big Ben and the Palace buildings, before anwering a good torrent of questions. There was an early pre Christmas flavour to the proceedings, with questions on Christmas presents and how people spend Christmas morning, as well as questions about the life of an MP. John Redwood was able to confirm he did know David Cameron and met him regularly, and explained how an MP was chosen to do the job by the voters.

John said “I am gratteful to the pupils and staff for welcoming me to their school and telling me so much about it. I encourage the pupils to come and visit Westminster when they come to London, as Parliament is a great building which can tell you a lot about our history and our democracy”.

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3 Comments

  1. dave roderick
    Posted November 18, 2013 at 11:43 pm | Permalink

    what democracy when are we the people asked our views, this is a country run by dictators in the eu, i have never been asked if i want to be an eu citizen ,and as far as i am concerned i never will be

  2. Narrow Shoulders
    Posted November 20, 2013 at 7:49 am | Permalink

    Mr Redwood,

    During your visit or at any other time have you addressed the unfairness of the disparity in AWPU between Primary and Secondary schools? Common sense and empirical evidence suggests that directing greater levels of funding at primary pupils delivers better quality students into the secondary sector who will require less funding to achieve their potential.

    The DfE and EFA however seem determined to enshrine the secondary weighted advantage within the coming national funding formula. Primary pupils need a champion especially at this time of expansion in numbers could you be their voice?

    Reply My visit was to talk to the pupils, who did not raise the issue of funding! Local primary schools have not lobbied me on this subject either.

    • Narrow Shoulders
      Posted November 20, 2013 at 1:32 pm | Permalink

      Thank you for the response, I am pleased the pupils were more concerned with interacting with a dignitary and showing off their efforts than funding but am surprised that other Primary schools have not raised this with you.

      Primary schools, in my experience have excellent proponents of the art of teaching but rather fewer in the art of funding and negotiation. Secondaries due to their economies of scale and generous AWPU funding seem to have better negotiators and lobbying representation. Secondary pupils per head get a much higher funding level than primary.

      If the government, and DfE in particular, is to press ahead with the academisation of education establishments it is vitally important that the trusts created are properly funded, there will no longer be a local authority safety net. The funding disparity per head between secondary and primary at present makes this unlikely in the future. To this point the local funding formulae have been able to address the differentials in rates of AWPU by using local factors to adjust for funding shortfalls where appropriate.

      A national funding formula will not allow local adjustment and Primary schools are likely to suffer from large shortfalls in their funds.

  • About John Redwood


    John Redwood won a free place at Kent College, Canterbury, and graduated from Magdalen College Oxford. He is a Distinguished fellow of All Souls, Oxford. A businessman by background, he has set up an investment management business, was both executive and non executive chairman of a quoted industrial PLC, and chaired a manufacturing company with factories in Birmingham, Chicago, India and China. He is the MP for Wokingham, first elected in 1987.

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