Commenting on the announcement of £400m to invest in the repair of school and college buildings in England, Dr Mary Bousted, Joint General Secretary of the National Education Union, said:

“Today’s announcement is yet another admission by Government that it has failed schools and colleges. However, they still fail to realise the scale of the problem. Having schools and colleges jump through hoops for vital funds amounts to yet more of the same, rather than a serious solution. It does nothing to help the school system as a whole shift course and find prosperity.

“Schools and colleges have suffered a deep and wounding real-terms funding crisis for many years, which recent spending announcements will not fix. Years of tight budgets has made repairs to buildings unaffordable if not impossible. The Coalition Government scrapped Building Schools for the Future in 2010, cancelling 700 building projects at a stroke. Today’s announcement of £400m is too little, too late.

“It is unacceptable that, in the 21st century, so many children and young people go to schools which have Victorian conditions. Government must get serious about a problem of its own creation.

“Acting tough on executive pay is another example of closing the stable door after the horse has bolted. Although minsters may preach pay restraint, they have no levers to pull to make it happen.”