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Education minister guarantees end to school book price hikes

Education minister Tiago Brandão Rodrigues has guaranteed that the deal struck between publishers and the last government that saw schoolbooks increasing by 2.6% every year will “not happen this year”. Indeed, the masterplan is to “progressively reduce” the price of schoolbooks that every child must have until they become free, he guaranteed. Meantime, the ministry’s budget for 2016 has been increased by €303 million – a 5.3% rise from last year.

“We have more money in this budget,” the minister affirmed in parliament, though opposition MP Amadeu Albergaria (PSD) suggested this was all a “political juggling” and that really education was going to be worse off.

Tiago Brandão Rodrigues has been cast as something of a white knight for education, vowing to reduce class sizes, increase the number of hours schools will take care of children and undertake much-needed repairs to many infrastructures.
As newspapers have pointed out, his ministry has still not fully explained how or indeed when it plans to implement these measures.