Schools in Scotland are in near crisis and the Scottish Government won’t address the cause.

Two reports last week highlight just how bad the situation is.

Research from Bath Spa University found that working conditions in Scottish schools are extremely poor.

Teachers face high levels of demand which has forces them to work at least 11 hours more than they are contracted for each week, which is often compounded by poor support from management and hostile behaviour from some parents.

To make matters worse, the OECD has found that between 2005 and 2015 Scottish teachers’ pay has dropped by six per cent in real terms. It is little wonder that four-in-10 teachers are considering leaving their job within the next 18 months. Scottish education is at a tipping point.

Instead of addressing the main cause of this problem, budget cuts, the SNP are focussing on education governance reforms which no one asked for and which are near universally opposed, including by teachers and other education professionals.

Instead of improving working conditions in schools, the SNP are looking for quick-fix solutions like involving "Teach First" in recruitment.

This organisation fast-tracks unqualified graduates into the classroom to learn on the job. Not only would that undermine the high professional standards in Scottish schools, Teach First will not actually solve the teacher shortage. In England, where it is currently used, Teach First has the lowest long-term retention rate.

Teachers have made their position clear time and time again. It is the conditions they face in school which are harming morale, retention and recruitment; high workloads, the lack of contact time with their pupils due to administrative pressures and the low pay which does not reflect the work they put in.

To address these problems, we need to reverse the funding cuts that education has faced since 2010. In the last budget, the Scottish Greens secured an additional £160 million for councils who funds our schools.

This was the largest budget concession ever won at Holyrood and has freed up money for councils to spend on education, but is only a first step in the right direction.

We need a bold plan to increase spending and get the four thousand teachers cut over the last decade back into our classrooms, as well as the Additional Support Needs, admin staff, librarians and others who have been lost. Our children deserve it and we can afford it. The choice is ours.