Showing posts from December, 2018

Council Appoint Independent Investigator Over Out of Court Payout

Labour Councillors walked out of a Special Town Council Meeting on 20th December 2018. The press and public were recommended to be excluded from the main business to be discussed, but all the councillors decided to hold the meeting in public. The meeting was held to appoint an independent investigator to probe into the circumstances which lead to the Town Council making an out-of-court settlement of £28,000 to a former contractor who provided youth services and whose contract was scrapped in 2015. The decision to appoint an independent investigator was made in principle at the 8th October meeting, in which the three Labour councillors attending (Slough, Swain, and Welsh) all voted for the motion. 41 minutes into the recording of this week's meeting, and before a vote was taken on the resolution below, the four Labour councillors in attendance (Kennedy, Welch, Slough, and Dixon-Wilkinson) walked out, after saying they were unhappy with the resolutions. Cllr Kennedy, for

Houghton Regis' — Primary School Performance Tables December 2018

Hawthorn Park Community Primary in Parkside Drive has been named as a "well below average" school for Reading and Maths. The Department for Education published the figures on 13 December 2018. Compulsory national curriculum subjects at primary school are English, maths, science, design and technology, history, geography, art and design, music, physical education (PE), including swimming, computing, ancient and modern foreign languages (at key stage 2). Schools must provide religious education (RE) but parents can ask for their children to be taken out of the whole lesson or part of it. Schools often also teach personal, social and health education (PSHE), citizenship, modern foreign languages (at key stage 1). Key stage 1 tests cover English reading, English grammar, punctuation and spelling, maths. Children take the tests in May and parents can ask the school for the test results. Key stage 2 tests are taken nationally in May when they reach the end of key stage 2.

Another Positive Quarter for the Fostering Service

A report to the next Corporate Parenting Panel 20 December 2018 at CBC concludes that the Fostering Service has provided another positive quarter for the Service. "Whilst a relatively low number of carers have been approved in this financial year, thus far, there are a high number in assessment which should support the service in meeting its recruitment target in this area. Other performance data for the service is good and provides a good indication that foster carers are providing a high standard of care to the children placed with them, that children are well matched and supported in local resources and that outcomes for them are good." The Children Act 2004, Care Standards Act 2000 and associated relevant Regulations and National Minimum Standards require the Local Authority Fostering Service to report to Council Members regularly on the activities of the Service. The report in full.  (pdf) The Agenda for the Corporate Parenting Panel meeting at Monks Walk, S

Traffic Light Labelling Coming from Kellogg“s

Kellogg’s, the cereal manufacturer,  announced that they are making changes from January 2019 to bring in colour coded front of pack nutrition labelling, more commonly known as traffic lights, on all their cereal range. South West Bedfordshire MP Andrew Selous, a member of the Health and Social Care Select Committee in Parliament and Co-chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Obesity, speaking in the House of Commons in November, called on Kellogg’s to follow the example of Nestle and put coloured traffic light labelling on all their products. The cereal and snack giant will voluntarily apply the scheme to labels on breakfast cereal packs made exclusively for sale in Britain, including on some of its biggest selling cereals: Special K, Coco Pops, Crunchy Nut, Corn Flakes, Rice Krispies and Frosties. Shoppers will start to see the new labels appear from January 2019, with all packs changed by early 2020. As these new-look packs roll out throughout 2019, their labels will c

Homes for Looked After Children Over 16 Years Old

On Monday 3rd December, local MP for South West Bedfordshire, Andrew Selous, asked the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment he has made of the (a) level of harm caused to children and (b) amount of police time expended as a result of the absence of regulations governing over 16 year old children's homes; if he will (i) instruct Ofsted to undertake inspections of those homes and (ii) introduce a fit and proper person test for directors of those homes; and if he will make a statement. Nadhim Zahawi, the The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Education, responded, “All children’s homes are governed by the same legislation and regulations, regardless of the age of the children they look after. We expect local authorities to safeguard children in their care aged over 16 in the same way they safeguard any looked-after child and for Ofsted to challenge those that are not meeting their duties.” “Under the Care Standards Act (2000) and the Children’s Homes (Eng

South Beds Dial-A-Ride

South Beds Dial-a-Ride aims to help people who cannot use a public bus service through reasons of disability, age or social exclusion. The service is a personal, reliable and friendly service to help maintain freedom and independence for those with a mobility issue. Serving the Central Bedfordshire towns of Dunstable, Houghton Regis, Leighton Buzzard and Linslade, and the villages of Aley Green, Aspley Guise, Barton-le-Clay, Battlesden, Billington, Caddington, Chalton, Eaton Bray, Eggington, Heath and Reach, Hockliffe, Husborne Crawley, Kensworth, Milton Bryan, Pepperstock, Potsgrove, Ridgmont, Slip End, Stanbridge, Streatley, Studham, Sundon, Tebworth, Tilsworth, Toddington, Totternhoe, Whipsnade, Wingfield, and Woburn. Now also available from Buckinghamshire villages for journeys into Central Bedfordshire and Luton – Bragenham, Burcott, Dagnall, Edelsborough, Great Brickhill, Ledburn, Little Brickhill, Slapton, Soulbury, Stoke Hammond, Wing, and Woburn Sands. Also from He