Part of Prayers – in the House of Commons at 9:37 am on 19th July 1991.

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Photo of Joan Ruddock Joan Ruddock , Lewisham, Deptford 9:37 am, 19th July 1991

The Minister has suggested that there is hostility between all Labour authorities and their local CTCs. There is a CTC in my constituency, and there would be justification for hostility. There has been co-operation between Lewisham council and Haberdashers' CTC, but we find that, under the Government's direct threat of poll tax capping, the education authority had to take £5 million out of its budget before it began this financial year, that the CTC alone has been promised £5 million by the Government for its first year, and that it is asking for a further £1 million. The Minister must understand why bitterness and resentment arise. I do not endorse any of the things that he has described, but he must understand why some of us feel that resourcing is at the heart of higher standards, and that higher standards are not being offered through the Government to Lewisham's LEA, although, the Government are seeking to offer them to CTCs. That is an elitist policy which angers us.