A better plan for education today - for the economy of tomorrow
Ed Miliband has today set out Labour's plan to protect education spending so that the next government can equip young people with the skills and knowledge they need to succeed in the future.
The next Labour Government will ensure education spending rises in real terms - not just the schools budget, but early years and further education too.
And Ed Miliband has set out Labour's plan to improve education with measures to:
• Cap class sizes for 5, 6 and 7 year-olds
• Drive up standards in every classroom, in every school, in every region
• Ensure all children in state schools are taught by high-quality qualified teachers
• Raise the status and quality of vocational education and skills
• Give our children the creativity, character and resilience they need to succeed in the 21st Century
Successful teaching and classroom discipline is made harder when classes are so much bigger. Since 2010, the number of the youngest children taught in classes bigger than 30 has gone up by almost 60,000. It is treble the number it was. And it is set to get far worse.
Currently, the government is spending money on new Free Schools in areas where there are surplus places. This simply makes no sense when class sizes are rising in the way they are. Or when people can't get their kids into the good schools they want.
So by ending the scandalous waste of money from building new schools in areas of surplus places, we will create more places where they are needed.
This will allow us to cap class sizes for 5, 6, and 7 year olds at no more than 30 pupils.
Today: Lord Fink backs down on tax avoidance
Yesterday millionaire Tory donor Lord Fink challenged Ed Miliband to repeat the claim he made at PMQs that he has engaged in "tax avoidance activities" - and even threatened to sue him if he did so.
Today, Ed has repeated the claim. And Lord Fink has backed down. He has admitted to avoiding tax. He even said: "tax avoidance, everyone does it".
Lord Fink might think that "everyone does it". He's wrong.
Now David Cameron must explain why he appointed as Treasurer of the Conservative Party someone who boasts about engaging in tax avoidance and thinks it is something everyone does.
Because this is the big choice facing our country.
A choice between an old economy defended by this government in which a blind eye is turned to tax avoidance. And a new economy built by investing in the talents and education of all our young people.
Labour has set out a new plan for Britain's future, a plan that works for ordinary families, rewarding the hard work they do and saving the NHS they rely on.
The Tories can't build a better future for working people because they stand up only for a privileged few. With the NHS going backwards and a recovery which works just for a few, working people can't afford five more years of David Cameron.
You can't trust Nick Clegg and the Liberal Democrats. They broke their promises and have been too weak to stand up to the Tories.
UKIP can't stand for working people: they're more Tory than the Tories, a party made up of Tory people, promoting Tory policies, bankrolled by Tory donors.