Then along came the Secretary of State for Education to criticise us for failing to put into the education system all the money he said "I have spent many days, weeks and months battling for in cabinet" ("Blunkett in threat to curb local powers", 18 June).
Here in Oxfordshire we are unable to spend on education this year all that Mr Blunkett says we should for the simple reason that if we did we would have to close even more services for the very children the conference focused upon. We are closing family centres and further reducing services for the most vulnerable children - about 400 in the "looked after" system with a similar number on the at-risk register.
I believe Mr Blunkett when he says that he has battled the cause of education in Cabinet. But he is only doing part of his job if he is not fighting for the right of every child to decent standards in both care and schools. For far too long many children have been let down by the failure of national and local services to address their needs as a whole.
Labour Education Spokesperson
Oxfordshire County Council