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More Breakfast Club uncertainty

Created on 15/03/2019 @ 10:33
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By Elgan Hearn, Local Democracy Reporter

Schools across the county are having to put together business cases to bid for Breakfast Club funding, it has been claimed.

Fears that Breakfast Clubs would be axed were first raised in January but this was cleared up as a “misunderstanding”.

But the Liberal Democrat/Green group on Powys County Council has spoken to head teachers who are telling parents that schools’ funding for Breakfast Clubs will be cut.

Liberal Democrat and Green group leader, Cllr James Gibson-Watt, said: “The controversy over whether Powys primary schools will suffer a cut in the funding they get for Breakfast Clubs from April has risen again.

“With indications that the funding will indeed be reduced and that schools will have to provide a business case to Powys County Council to get the funding.

“At best it seems that we were all misled and that the original letter that went to schools from the council stating that Breakfast Club funding will be removed from delegated school budgets may well have been correct.”

Cllr Gibson-Watt, replied: “We were then told that it was all OK and the funding would be in their budgets and not to worry. In fact, it appears that schools are not even allowed to use their delegated funding to fund Breakfast Clubs!”

He now wants an explanation from education portfolio holder, Cllr Myfanwy Alexander.

Earlier this year Powys resolved to change the schools’ formula following a wide-ranging review.

Cllr Alexander said that while there is “no longer a specific line for breakfast clubs”, money is available within the “delegated funding”.

A spokesperson for Powys County Council said: “This is no change to existing arrangements where schools choose to deliver provision of a free breakfast. This element does not require a business case from the school.

“In other words existing arrangements for Breakfast Clubs continue unless the school notifies that they wish to make other arrangements. Any additional supervision over the half hour can be provided through the school but must be self-financing.

“It is this element that requires a business case as it cannot be provided from delegated school funding.”

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