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 Peter Peacock Peter Peacock Labour 4:30 pm, 7th June 2000

Presiding Officer, you will not be surprised to learn that the Executive opposes amendment 29, in the name of Brian Monteith. St Mary's has absolutely nothing to fear from going back into the local authority set-up. It will do fine within that family of local authority schools, where it will receive greater support and will flourish.

It seems a little bizarre that Brian Monteith should lodge an amendment that would require ministers, upon receiving an application, not to withhold unreasonably grant aid to Scotland's private schools and the other schools that he mentions. Such a commitment would be clearly contrary to our policy that publicly funded schools should be managed by local authorities, which are best placed to plan provision and offer a supportive framework.