St Andrew’s School closure threat "Education replies"

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St Andrew’s School closure threat "Education replies"

Post by GD on Wed 07 Jan 2009, 8:29 pm

Renewed fear that St Andrew’s Primary School could still face closure was met with anger from parents yesterday.
The Guernsey Press revealed that the Education Department’s decision to keep the school open could be overturned after it was believed to have amended its report to allow States members to challenge the decision in the Assembly.
The report is due to be included in this month’s Billet.
PTA chairman Maria Tostevin said that as far as the school was concerned the decision in September had been final.
‘We’re very shocked. Education categorically told us that the decision to keep our school open would be final and not up for further debate. It’s just extremely cruel to be faced with this, it seems absurd that some kind of U-turn has taken place,’ she said.
‘If it’s true that the report has been amended then, quite frankly, something stinks.’ (from thisisguernsey)

This was always going to rear its head. lets face it the education department have "ear marked" St Andrews as a possible closure,and now with the recession the costs have to be looked at again..


Last edited by GD on Fri 23 Jan 2009, 2:51 pm; edited 1 time in total


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Re: St Andrew’s School closure threat "Education replies"

Post by plimmerton811 on Thu 08 Jan 2009, 7:04 pm

The St Andrews PTA are doing a great job but they have to face reality the school will close cause that is what education wants. Long gone are the days of local parish schools, the Forest will be the only one left and that will be left there for other reasons.

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Re: St Andrew’s School closure threat "Education replies"

Post by GD on Fri 09 Jan 2009, 9:35 pm

SEVEN ministers want St Andrew’s Primary School closed, it emerged today.
The Policy Council’s opposition to the school remaining open coincided with Education releasing its report detailing why it wants to save the school but close St Sampson’s Infants.
The issue goes to the States at the end of the month and Education minister Carol Steere said it would be ‘interesting’ to see to what extent the House would be guided by the council.
‘That all depends on how seriously they take Policy Council’s view - they may be guided by it,’ she said. ‘From my point of view, if we are acting corporately, thinking sensibly about financial implications, I’m not surprised the majority of the Policy Council have decided to vote in that particular fashion.’
This will be one of the first tests of the States’ resolve to curb spending, she said.
‘It will be interesting to see whether the States has the stomach for it, because this is such an emotive issue, whether the States will do what is best particularly in a time of huge financial constraint.’


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Re: St Andrew’s School closure threat "Education replies"

Post by MarkyD on Sat 10 Jan 2009, 11:17 am

plimmerton811 wrote:The St Andrews PTA are doing a great job but they have to face reality the school will close cause that is what education wants. Long gone are the days of local parish schools, the Forest will be the only one left and that will be left there for other reasons.

That's not strictly true Plimmerton. It is the Policy Council who want St Andrews to close and also the Education minister.

Education as a department are still recommending that it should remain open, however the final decision does indeed remain with the States.

The latest media release confirms this:

http://www.education.gg/gg/custom/files_uploaded/uploaded_resources/4877/Primary_Rationalisation_Billet_press_release.pdf

It is certainly an emotive subject for the parents though.


Last edited by MarkyD on Sat 10 Jan 2009, 5:01 pm; edited 1 time in total
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Re: St Andrew’s School closure threat "Education replies"

Post by GD on Sat 10 Jan 2009, 4:41 pm

ST ANDREW’S SCHOOL PTA has voiced its anger that the report recommending the school remains open may be ignored.
Following yesterday’s news that the majority of the Policy Council supports its closure, PTA chairwoman Maria Tostevin said the association felt let down.
‘We know that the States is looking to save money, but we feel strongly that schools cannot be part of cutting expenses,’ she said.
‘We are bitterly disappointed that the Education minister is not following the report, compiled by experts, that is clearly recommending that St Andrew’s School stays open.
‘What is the point of having experts in to prepare these findings if this is going to be ignored?’
Mrs Tostevin said closure would not only affect the parish’s children but also those at Forest, Castel and St Martin’s.
Because of the number of pupils involved, children at existing primaries could be forced out into others around the island.(from thisisguernsey)


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Re: St Andrew’s School closure threat "Education replies"

Post by GD on Sat 17 Jan 2009, 5:15 pm

THE war of words between Education and St Andrew’s Primary School PTA intensified yesterday.
The two disagree over whether or not the department gave an assurance that its recommendation to keep the school open would not be debated by the States.
Education minister Carol Steere released a letter sent in September to then PTA chairman Alasdair McLaren confirming that the department would ‘recommend’ to the States that the school remains open.
Deputy Steere added that notes from a July meeting between the department and PTA had also stated that the board’s recommendation would go to the States for approval.
But Mr McLaren insisted yesterday that Deputy Steere and director of education Derek Neale had assured the PTA at the July meeting that the States would only debate a recommendation of closure.
‘When we met Carol Steere and Derek Neale, we specifically asked the question, “if the report states that St Andrew’s remains open, will that decision by the board be put to the States to vote on?”
‘The answer to that question was, no, it would not. “It would only be put to the States if the recommendation was for closure”.’
(from thisisguernsey)


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Re: St Andrew’s School closure threat "Education replies"

Post by GD on Tue 20 Jan 2009, 3:37 pm

EDUCATION categorically assured the St Andrew’s PTA that the school would be safe if the board decided to keep it open, a leading advocate has said.

The row between the department and the PTA reached boiling point when, in Saturday’s Guernsey Press, former PTA chairman Alasdair McLaren said that Education minister Carol Steere and director of Education Derek Neale had given assurances that the issue would not go to the States for debate if the department decided to save the school.

Mr McLaren said the pair had responded to a specific question during July’s meeting with PTA representatives.

But, in a letter printed in today’s Guernsey Press, Deputy Steere insists the question was never raised.

‘Mr McLaren makes no reference to who answered,’ she said. ‘This is because there is no record of the question being asked or responded to. I therefore take great exception to the inference that I, or the director of the Education Department, have misled the representatives of the St Andrew’s PTA.’

However, Advocate Rob Shepherd, a partner at Ozannes, yesterday confirmed Mr McLaren’s recollection.


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Re: St Andrew’s School closure threat "Education replies"

Post by technophobe on Tue 20 Jan 2009, 4:15 pm

I used to work with Rob and if he says it happened then it did, he's not one for lying or making mistakes (which is quite rare for a lawyer).

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Re: St Andrew’s School closure threat "Education replies"

Post by Fast Robert on Tue 20 Jan 2009, 9:17 pm

the standard of education that comes out of Guernsey's rich and profligate society is appaling. Closing well run and successful community schools is at odds with progress. It seems to me that the then Carol Fletcher used to be a sound socially oriented type, but now this just smacks of personal ambition to get her budget under control and elevate her political ambitions.

Education has been a badly worded joke for decades. Systemic failures are driving decent teachers away, the kids are still barely literate and the future holds nothing but 'wealth generating persons servicing'.

We ain't no Hong Kong or Monaco, we need to get over it and readjust to normality.
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Re: St Andrew’s School closure threat "Education replies"

Post by plimmerton811 on Wed 21 Jan 2009, 7:02 am

odd that someone is questioning the integrity of education, hasn't Mr Neale been in this position before!!!!

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Re: St Andrew’s School closure threat "Education replies"

Post by GD on Fri 23 Jan 2009, 2:50 pm

EDUCATION has hit out at the St Andrew’s School PTA’s campaign to keep it open in a letter sent to department staff.

A copy of it has been obtained by the Guernsey Press, but some believe it paints a confusing picture when compared to statements in the States report in which the department recommends the school stays open.

The PTA has been warning about the effect on other schools if St Andrew’s were to be closed.

In the letter, Education said: ‘The department would not seek to transfer existing pupils between schools and following the trend of reducing pupil numbers it may well be the case that pupils could be absorbed into other schools without the need to redraw catchment areas - as indicated in the States report.

‘If there was a need to redraw catchment areas this would take time and the department does not see this as a possibility for the foreseeable future.’

But this does not sit easily with the conclusion of its report before the States, according to Deputy Jane Stephens.

‘There is clear reference in the policy letter to the need to redraw the catchment areas of the Castel, Forest and St Martin’s, Forest schools and La Houguette, Vauvert and La Mare de Carteret primaries will all be affected if schools close,’ she said. (from thisisguernsey)


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