‘If I was a betting man, ESC will win the day’

A VOCAL opponent of the one school on two sites secondary school model believes that Education, Sport & Culture’s new proposal will find support in the States.

Petition organiser Mark Mauger hands it over to Deputy Gavin St Pier before the 'paise and review' debate in February 2020. (29616308)
Petition organiser Mark Mauger hands it over to Deputy Gavin St Pier before the 'paise and review' debate in February 2020. (29616308)

Mark Mauger was one of the leaders of People Power Guernsey, which

rallied against the two large schools idea, launched a green ribbon campaign,

and held a march supporting the ‘pause and review’ option in February last year.

While the march was against that idea, Mr Mauger said the movement had not put its weight behind any particular option.

Personally he is behind the proposals being put forward by ESC which appeared in report form last week.

‘I think what they have come up with is a really good option,’ he said.

‘It’s a lot cheaper than the other option and all the post-16 education is in one area and not attached to one school.’

Teachers have expressed concern over the lack of details in the plans, but Mr Mauger said that this was in connection with concerns specific to the profession.

‘Looking at the report in the Guernsey Press, the unions are saying there’s no pay structure or job security. That was going to happen whatever. It’s not about what’s happening with the schools, it’s about the teachers.

‘A lot of this is away from how the kids are going to be educated and about how staff are going to be treated.

‘From my point of view that can be sorted out at a later date.

‘I hope when it goes to the States in July they will approve what Education have put forward. It’s a sensible suggestion.

‘If I was a betting man, I would say that it will go through this time.’

He has kept in touch with opponents of the two-school model online and said he has yet to hear any negative reaction from them to ESC’s plans.

He did not think the States will back the amendment from Deputy Jonathan Le Tocq calling for three 11-18 schools since, in his opinion, it would mean that some schools would not be able to cater for some A-levels and so some students would have to go to another school for that subject anyway.

It was also likely ESC member Andy Cameron’s ‘do nothing’ approach would not find favour.

Mr Mauger said he was surprised that the deputy had supported the three-school model in his manifesto yet had come out against his own committee’s proposals.

Deputy Cameron had said this was because he wanted there to be an option that involved doing less than the proposals.

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