After section 20

Part of Standards in Scotland's Schools etc Bill: Stage 3 – in the Scottish Parliament at 4:30 pm on 7th June 2000.

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Photo of Bill Aitken Bill Aitken Conservative 4:30 pm, 7th June 2000

I have some experience in these matters as I was the city councillor who represented the Jordanhill area at the time when Jordanhill School's funding became a problem. The matter was satisfactorily resolved by the direct intervention of the then Prime Minister.

When Sam Galbraith stayed in my constituency, I was gratified to think that it might have been the quality of the local government representation that tempted him to remain in the Jordanhill area. As a responsible parent, he sought to avail himself of the facilities available through the school. The school is an excellent example of what happens when parents are involved.

Amendment 29 captures the difference in philosophy between ourselves and the Executive: we believe in giving parents the choice, and we believe in giving them the maximum input into their children's education. Jordanhill has been a classic example of that. It is the height of unfairness that other parents throughout Scotland—and not just parents of children at St Mary's, although that school is another good example—do not have the opportunity to avail themselves of similar opportunities to those that exist in Jordanhill, which is an outstanding success by any criteria. The amendment seeks to give parents those opportunities.