ESC proposals ‘educationally detrimental’ - committee rebel

‘FINANCIALLY nonsensical’ and ‘educationally detrimental’ was how Education’s rebel member Andy Cameron described the committee’s proposals as he put forward his ‘do minimum’ option in the States yesterday.

Deputy Andy Cameron. (Picture by Sophie Rabey, 29773854)
Deputy Andy Cameron. (Picture by Sophie Rabey, 29773854)

The Cameron amendment called for three 11-16 schools and a co-located sixth-form centre at Les Varendes.

He encouraged his colleagues to look beyond what he called ‘the sales pitch’.

‘The committee’s model pours all its energies into this false dream of a post-16 utopia, and completely disregards what is required by the three 11-16 schools.

‘There is simply no requirement to move the successful sixth form 500 metres down the road, but many potential problems and a lot of expense doing so,’ he said.

‘The model proposed in the policy letter is operationally very challenging, financially nonsensical, and educationally detrimental, but there is another way.

‘The committee’s proposal is an expensive shuffle sideways, that keeps us trapped in an cycle of higher revenue costs, on top of a hefty capital bill for no good educational reason.

‘Take a sensible step forward instead, invest not in a flashy newly-built sixth form centre, but in our 11-16 schools.’

Referring to the concerns of staff, Deputy Cameron said the survey of teachers showed the overwhelming opposition from the profession, which would only intensify when true detail emerged.

‘It’s skidding along the tarmac on its bare rims already and it’s barely off the starting grid, it needs an urgent pit stop for a wheel change, and that’s why I’m bringing this amendment.’

In contrast, he said his model had been shaped from listening to teacher feedback.

The crux of the amendment was that instead of spending tens of millions of pounds relocating the sixth-form centre down the road to Les Ozouets, that money should be ploughed into improving and expanding facilities in the secondary schools.

‘ESC’s proposal is to de-fund the 11-16 sector, the model in this amendment proposes investing in it’, he said.

Under the Cameron plan there would be money for new science labs at Les Beaucamps, a swimming pool at Les Varendes, an added internal walkway at St Sampson’s, and a sports hall and pool at St Anne’s in Alderney.

On the issue of traffic, Deputy Cameron warned that there would be kick-back from the community when further details of the committee’s model were revealed.

He predicted that a North Beach-style car park at Les Ozouets would not be popular, and they should ‘brace’ themselves for that.

Safeguarding children who would be sharing sites with adults, was also highlighted.

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