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Support staff shortage in schools

PUBLISHED: 09:24 12 June 2002 | UPDATED: 12:05 03 March 2010

SCHOOLS in East Anglia are increasingly being forced to cut back on support staff because of cash shortages, headteachers have warned.

Some teaching assistants - which the Government believes should lessen the workload for teachers - are having their hours cut by up to half because of budget shortfalls.

SCHOOLS in East Anglia are increasingly being forced to cut back on support staff because of cash shortages, headteachers have warned.

Some teaching assistants – which the Government believes should lessen the workload for teachers – are having their hours cut by up to half because of budget shortfalls.

Brian Cash, headteacher at Westgate Primary School in Bury St Edmunds, said he was one of a growing number of headteachers who had been forced to reduce some staff hours because of financial problems.

"In all my 25 years as a headteacher, I have never had to deal with as worse a budget than I had to deal with this year," he claimed.

Sharon Sciachettano, headteacher of Old Heath Primary School in Colchester, added: "We had to make three valued members of staff redundant earlier this year. They were qualified nursery nurses and the budget did not stretch to paying them adequately.

"Everyone was devastated because they were long-term staff members and held in very high esteem by parents, children and colleagues.

"There is no doubt there is a recruitment crisis and teaching does not seem to be attractive to lots of young people because of the workload. If there were more assistants taking some of the burden away, I am sure it would help."

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