Children and families were a key feature of the Liberal Democrat Spring conference this weekend in Harrogate. They voted in ‘Equity and Excellence’ (PDF), a motion to improve 5-19 Education. A heated debate ensued and the Lib Dems almost but didn’t quite agree to scrap state funded faith schools. The proposals that they did vote in include a Pupil Premium, which promises smaller class room sizes, and a scaled down National Curriculum.
A second policy paper titled ‘The Best Deal for Families’ (PDF) was also adopted by the conference with the aim to prioritise families, promote universal child care and extended parental leave for fathers and mothers. All important measures to promote social inclusion and make for a powerful pre-election manifesto. All cost money, an issue that didn’t seem to be up for debate on this occasion.