Ed Davey's school places pledge

Ed Davey has launched a campaign to build four new primary schools across Chessington, Kingston, New Malden and Surbiton over the next five years.

His plan follows on from Kingston's largest ever primary school expansion completed under the last Liberal Democrat Council, which saw 315 new permanent places created and a new school, with over £68 million invested.

Ed's commitment to fight for local children and their families follows on from his first election back in 1997 when he ran under the slogan "Ed for Education".

He said: "Kingston's primary school age population just keeps going up. It's a tribute to our popular, successful schools, of course, but it means that we must keep investing and building."

But Ed Davey believes there are two big threats to providing the primary school places local families need - George Osborne's budget plans and Michael Gove's 'free schools' policy.

"It will take major new investment to build these schools. Yet with Conservative proposals to target the education budget for cuts, my campaign for new primary schools could be scuppered if the Tories win here.

"The second problem is the chaos and waste caused by Michael Gove's free schools policy. His Education Funding Agency keeps buying up office blocks in Kingston and saying they can be used for schools when they are in the wrong places and not suitable, with no play areas."

Ed is seeking urgent talks with the Education Funding Agency to persuade them to invest in local sites where new primaries are desperately needed.