Friday, February 20, 2009
Comment given to local papers regarding scrutiny committee's decision
Last night the Scrutiny and Overview committee at the council decided not to send back the 'secondary review' decision to the cabinet. BASICALLY, IT WAS A DISPLAY OF HOW THE MACHINE THAT IS LOCAL GOVERNMENT GIVES THE IMPRESSION THAT IT WORKS FOR THE PEOPLE BUT THE REALITY IS SOMEWHAT DIFFERENT.
"After presenting to the scrutiny committee meeting, I am now clear in my mind that contrary to the poster campaign around Croydon, this council is not listening to parents, teachers and pupils. If the chair of governors from Ashburton Infants and Haling Manor – as well as Croydon Save our Schools - make impassioned submissions to the committee, only to find that their arguments fall upon deaf ears, then there is no doubt in my mind that the proposals are a done deal. You only have to look at The Harris Federation web site, where Haling Manor is already listed, to realise that the council will steamroller the proposals through.
"Arguably, those of us that spoke were set up to fail through a technicality. After two hours of discussion, members of the committee pointed out that they had not heard any arguments relating to reasons for a referral (1) to the committee. It was not stipulated to those of us that addressed the committee that we needed to pitch our submission to the points of referral. In any case, unlike the council, we do not have an army of lawyers and consultants on hand to trawl through the ‘policy framework’ or to find inconsistencies within council policy.
In fact, with regard to BSF funding, I pointed out that academisation is not a prerequisite for BSF money and this was stated by Schools Minister Jim Knight."
1. Reasons for referral:
1) The decision is outside of the Policy Framework,
2) The decision is inconsistent with the budget,
3) The decision is inconsistent with another council policy. ---
4) 'Other' - The decision affects every ward in Croydon and has significant financial implications from government funding from Building Schools for the Future (BSF).
Tags croydon, greenparty