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‘No requirement’ to hold public meeting over school closure

 
Created on 02/05/2021 @ 08:49

 

Campaigners trying to save Churchstoke County Primary School are fuming that Powys County Council is refusing to hold a public meeting of any form over their plans to shut the school.

The regional authority and campaigners are at loggerheads with the latter claiming that PCC’s reasons for closing the school are flawed.

PCC has launched a programme to close a number of local village schools in favour of lumping children together in hub schools to streamline their education delivery.

And fuel has been added to the fire this week with PCC saying that no meeting, even virtually, is being arranged for parents/the community as part of the consultation, as “this is in accordance with the requirements of the School Organisation Code which does not require meetings to be held as part of the consultation process”.

It hasn’t gone down well with the campaign already accusing the council of basing their plans on outdated information.

“The community believe it’s a fundamental part of the process which has been a normal part of consultation processes pre-Covid,” the campaign stated.

“Churchstoke CP School was promised that they would not be disadvantaged by consulting in a pandemic, this they believe is clearly untrue. There are so many unanswered questions that the parents, community and wider community would like addressed but it seems that’s not going to happen.

“This response has left us in complete shock! We were promised a fair consultation and this in our eyes is completely unfair. We are at risk of our school closing and community being ripped apart, yet Powys County Council feel it’s acceptable for us just to respond! What about all the questions we have? Is our voice not important?”

A statement provided to us by Powys County Council reads: “It has been just over a week since we launched the consultation on our proposal to close Churchstoke C.P. School, which still has six weeks left until it closes. We have already received a large number of responses.

“All consultations around school proposals are held in accordance with the School Organisation Code. No meeting is being arranged for parents/the community as part of the consultation, this is in accordance with the requirements of the School Organisation Code which does not require meetings to be held as part of the consultation process.

“We will be meeting governors, school staff and learners to seek their views on our proposals.

“Parents and members of the community are able to respond to the consultation by either using the online response, by email or by writing to us. Details can be found on how to take part by visiting https://en.powys.gov.uk/article/10567/Churchstoke-C.P.-School

“Those who would like a paper copy of the consultation document can contact the Transforming Education Team by phoning 01597 826618 or emailing school.organisation@powys.gov.uk.

“All the responses and issues raised during the consultation period will be collated into a consultation report and responded to. The consultation report will be considered by Cabinet once the consultation closes.”

 

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