Scottish councils should resist education changes, Cosla says

The news comes as numerous councillors have raised concerns over new government plans in the country, which they claim could cut the role of councils in schools.

However, a spokesman for the Scottish government argued that making teachers and parents key decision-makers was in fact ‘decentralising power.

They said: "We are doing this because we believe that decisions about children's learning and school life should be taken at school level, supported by parents and the local community.

"This is a vision of empowerment and devolution and our reforms will be based on evidence of what works."

Many councillors fear they will be squeezed out as individual schools gain some powers and new regional boards absorb others.

Speaking at a conference, David O'Neill, president of Cosla, said: "There seems to be in Scotland a national view from both government and parliament of a fall-back position that when money is tight or when we wish to direct services to be effective and efficient, centralisation is the only answer.

"And we cannot allow that to happen in education. I resist making the political point that fire nor police have hardly been a roaring success.

"Centralisation is the enemy of everything we stand for in local government. It does not lead to efficiency and effectiveness. It leads to increased cost, inflexibility, an inability to respond to local requirements and lesser outcomes for communities."