I find the tone and content of the schools debate massively unhelpful, not least the smugness of Mike MacKenzie (Misunderstanding democracy; SN, 11/03/15)
He has judged (correctly) that nobody ever remembers a list MSP, so he has chosen to attach himself to the anti-closure lobby in the belief that it will make him popular.
Meantime, his party in government is cutting funds for councils but tying their hands on where they can make those cuts.
Very serious budget cuts are coming, and I don’t want to see us forced to keep schools open while further hammering the old, frail and vulnerable.
This ‘debate’ has taken on an aggressive, illogical clamour which has nothing to do with what’s best for children – quite the contrary.
Through it all, I think the only voice, which did seem concerned with children’s education was that of education officer Audrey Edwards, whose hours of grilling in the council chamber I followed with interest on Shetland News‘ live reports on Northmavine schools in November (Live: Northmavine primary debate; SN, 04/11/14 and Live: Full Council debates Northmavine school; SN, 05/11/14)
I would refer the posturing MSP and the overblown Mr Sansom (Chief executive under fire over school closure decision; SN 11/03/15 and Asset stripping; SN, 11/03/15) as well as the crusading Mr Longmuir (SIC ‘flouting law’ on school closures; SN, 20/02/15) back to read that debate and Ms Edwards’ reasoned responses; and then consider the tone and motivation behind their own contributions.