[WATCH] ‘Disabled people worried about banding’ – Busuttil

Opposition leader Simon Busuttil said that disabled people are worried that the new early-education banding system will exclude them from mainstream education. 

Opposition leader Simon Busuttil. Photo Ray Attard
Opposition leader Simon Busuttil. Photo Ray Attard
Simon Busuttil meets National Youth Parliament • Video: Ray Attard

People with a disability are worried that the new banding system in state schools will exclude them from mainstream education, Opposition leader Simon Busuttil said.

The new banding policy means that all state primary schools will group students by month of birth from Kindergarten 1 to Grade 4. In Grades 5 and 6 they will be allocated in separate classes according to their results in English, Maths and Maltese.

“Banding isn’t the right way to deal with mixed-ability classrooms as it puts inclusive education at risk,” Busuttil said.

He was speaking to members of the National Youth Parliament who met up a few weeks ago to discuss education, tourism, transport, and drug law reforms.

Busuttil also voiced concern that parts of Air Malta could end up privitised after Prime Minister Joseph Muscat said that the airline will be divesting itself of various units.

“Our economy and tourism are dependant on Air Malta,” Busuttil said. “Air Malta has changed its chairperson three times and the newest chairperson now said that she didn’t find a proper management structure in place when she took over. Now we are hearing that some parts of Air Malta could end up privitised too.”

Busuttil also criticised the government for allowing traffic to worsen, despite its pre-election promise to alleviate it.

“It’s not as though it remained the same. It got worse, and this awakens questions about the government’s competency,” Busuttil said. “Traffic is not just a perception.” Busuttil had previously described the growing traffic congestion as a “cancer factory”.

The press were not allowed to ask Busuttil questions about the energy sector. The PN are expected to make an official energy-related announcement later on today.  

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