South Scotland Labour MSP Colin Smyth has said that the Scottish Government must answer for the delay in announcing funding for Phase 2 of the Dumfries Learning Town Project.

At the conception of the Dumfries Learning Town project the timescales provided to parents, pupils and staff were that Phase 2 of the project would be completed by 2020.

However, the Scottish Government have today (21 November) announced that although they will invest £1billion in new school buildings and major refurbishments, no funding will be provided until 2021 – which is AFTER phase 2 of the Learning Town was supposed be completed. The Government have also failed to provide details of whether the Government’s funding announcement will cover phase 2 of the Learning Town.

Colin Smyth MSP said, “The SNP Government must answer to parents, pupils and teachers who were promised new or refurbished schools by 2020 why that timescale can no longer be met because the Government won’t provide any new funding for any new schools until 2021. This SNP Scottish Government have ignored calls time and time again to announce funding for Dumfries Learning Town Phase 2 despite already giving their backing to the project. It used to be that there was an annual budget for school building from the Government that went alongside funding from councils. But we now face the prospect of another three years were not a brick will be laid in a single new school. Both Dumfries Academy and High School are being left behind as a result of the Government’s dithering and that is an utter betrayal and we still don’t know if they will be included in the funding the Government has announced from 2021”

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