MSP laments cuts to primary school swimming funding

Pic Lisa Ferguson 20/02/2015'Scottish Conservative Conference 2015, EICC, Edinburgh'John Lamont MSP with Davif Mundell (Scotland Office Minister and MP fo Dumbartonshire, Clydesdale and Tweeddale) holds and open debate on the issues of Securing Scottish Future
Pic Lisa Ferguson 20/02/2015'Scottish Conservative Conference 2015, EICC, Edinburgh'John Lamont MSP with Davif Mundell (Scotland Office Minister and MP fo Dumbartonshire, Clydesdale and Tweeddale) holds and open debate on the issues of Securing Scottish Future

Conservative MSP John Lamont has reiterated his criticism of primary school swimming provision.

Figures obtained through Freedom of Information revealed that more than 1,700 P4 to P7 pupils are being denied the chance to learn how to swim.

The statistics show provision of swimming lessons varies across local authorities, and Scottish Conservatives say the Borders is struggling to provide sufficient lessons.

Scottish Swimming has claimed that as many as 40 per cent of primary school children are heading into secondary school as non-swimmers.

Mr Lamont said after June’s decision to remove ‘top-up’ funding of £1.7 million: “It’s scandalous that so many primary school children in the south of Scotland are missing out on swimming lessons as the sport plays an important part in the school curriculum.

“Swimming has many health benefits and also promotes confidence in young people, so it is scandalous to hear that many children cannot swim by the time they reach high school.

“It is quite clear that the Scottish Government’s decision to cut £1.72m of funding to support swimming lessons has done significant damage. The situation is only set to get worse, not better.”