EDUCATION LEEDS, the private company that now runs the city's schools, has been rocked by opposition to its secondary school reorganisation plans. Over the last couple of weeks, parents, teachers and school governors have packed into 'consultation meetings' to angrily denounce the proposals.
Many were inspired by a pupil at one meeting who argued that if the money spent in the closures was spent on the existing local schools there would still be enough left to pay the firefighters.
Education Leeds wants to close seven inner-city high schools and replace them with three new larger schools and a 'city academy'. Some of the money for these developments is to come from PFI, and a private construction group is to be one of the sponsors of the city academy.
The closure of so many schools will have a devastating effect on the education offered to young people from some of the poorest areas of the city.
Mike Stirland and Paula Champion