Attempt to delay new schools review defeated

New education review will go directly to consultation.

A DELAYING MOVE on plans to introduce a new strategy on sustainable schools in Moray was rejected at a Moray Council committee meeting on Wednesday.

Opposition plans to first allow workshops to take place for councillors and give them the chance to carry out school visits themselves before any new strategy plans were adopted was defeated by four votes.

On an issue that has caused intense divisions in the council chamber over the last 18 months, the latest move by the ruling administration group will now go ahead with their policy set to go for consultation to parent councils, head teachers and trade unions.

The report put to the council’s children and young people’s services committee said: “Officers have researched suitable criteria and indicators for sustainable schools and have concluded, first and foremost, the quality of education offered by a school must be of greatest importance.”

Containing six key criteria against which the sustainability of all schools will be measured, the strategy includes a number of indicators that will be used in identifying if a school is sustainable.

Critics insist that the plan is simply a back-door means of the administration re-introducing school closure measures that were rejected in the sustainable education review conducted by consultants last year and rejected by councillors, ultimately causing a split in the Independent/Tory administration.