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Stephen Twigg MP, Labour’s Shadow Education Secretary, today announced that Labour will call a parliamentary vote demanding that the Government restores the minimum space requirement for outdoor space in schools.
Labour called on the Government to perform a u-turn on their decision to water down school regulations which protect outdoor space. Labour will table a motion when Parliament returns in September allowing MPs to debate the changes, which the Government tried to sneak through during the recess – Parliament’s summer break.
Stephen Twigg said:
"Michael Gove is hopelessly out of touch on this issue. How can he think that the priority should be to weaken the standards on playing fields and outdoor space just a few days before the Olympics?
"We have already had the scrapping of the target of pupils doing a minimum 2 hours of PE per week, the decision to cut the school sport budget by 69 per cent and the abolishing of School Sports Partnerships. Many parents will be wondering how serious the Government are taking the legacy of inspiring the next generation.
"Michael Gove has tried to sneak out these changes while Parliament is in recess, so MPs do not have a chance to debate them. However, Labour will bring forward a motion when Parliament does return so that these changes can be scrutinised by elected representatives.
"It’s not too late for the Government to change its mind and restore the minimum space requirement for outdoor space and school playing fields. We need to ensure there is no salami slicing of school playing fields.
"Labour is calling for a 10 year cross party plan on school sport – something detailed, thought through and developed by the experts, not the kind of knee jerk reaction we had from the Prime Minister with his ill-advised comments on Indian dancing."