Chris Lyttle says school crossing patrol removal idea proof of need for education review


Alliance Education spokesperson Chris Lyttle MLA has said news the Education Authority (EA) considered removing all school crossing patrols is proof the entire education system needs a Bengoa-style review.

Mr Lyttle was speaking after the BBC revealed a letter from the EA in which it states it deliberated removing all lollipop men and women as part of a cost-cutting measure, as well as other “difficult choices” such as withdrawing uniform allowances and making compulsory redundancies in schools. 

Chris Lyttle says school crossing patrol removal idea proof of need for education reviewHowever, EA board members said the proposal was “unpalatable” and rejected it.

“It is well known the Education Authority faces a deficit, with recent estimates suggesting it is around £58 million for the forthcoming financial year,” said Mr Lyttle.

“Alliance has previously raised the need for a Bengoa-style review of our entire education system. We have had numerous reports and recommendations into it but they have not been adequately implemented. A comprehensive review and implementation of reform is needed urgently if we are to arrest the financial crisis on our schools.

“The fact the removal of crossing patrol guards was even contemplated shows how unsustainable the current situation is. Unless the Bengoa-style review takes place, there will unfortunately be more and more of these unacceptable proposals.”