Yet another success for a school the previous …

Comment posted Major success for Argyll and Bute Council education staff and for Kilmodan school by Integrity? Not in the ConDemAll.

Yet another success for a school the previous administration, and in particular Cllr Marshall’s criteria, would have us believe is failing.

A little encouragement and a little support and our rural schools can, and do, demonstrate quite how effective they are and quite how well they deliver education.

Integrity? Not in the ConDemAll also commented

  • Regarding the update which reads ‘Auileen Goodall is an Educational Development Officer – not a Quality Improvement Officer. This keeps the pressure on the question of just what the very many QIOs at Argyll and Bute council actually do and whether that is worth what it costs us’

    This is an important point of discussion. It would be interesting to know what are the remits of both roles and how much overlap is there. Based purely on title (which can obviously be misleading) they certainly appear to be roles which must have a lot of similar responsibilities. Are we getitng value for money from these two roles?

Recent comments by Integrity? Not in the ConDemAll

  • Stuart Hill challenges Supreme Court to test security of jurisdiction for Shetland
    You may well be correct Thorfinn. It was a little while ago I read about it so there may well have been a subsequent council decision since.

    Thanks for taking the time to respond.

  • Stuart Hill challenges Supreme Court to test security of jurisdiction for Shetland
    Thorfinn

    My apologies for going totally off track with this post but I was wondering whether you might be able to provide a little insight into how the people of the Shetland Isles are reacting to the council’s consideration of selling off Sella Ness.

    No worries if you don’t want to respond. I’m just curious, no hidden agenda.

  • Russell writes to councillors on Castle Toward decision tomorrow as some are denied a vote
    Oban Worthy

    Apologies for the delay responding, I only just noticed your response. You are correct that there is some flexibility which is why I said predominantly. There are always gray areas over whether an item is revenue expenditure or capital expenditure and I would wager there isn’t a council in the country who don’t have some revenue expenditure funded from capital.

    The classic example used in old accountancy days is replacement windows. If you replace like for like it is arguable revenue expenditure as it is maintenance but if you replace single glazed for double glazed then it is an enhancement therefore capital. However the argument for it being revenue falls down a bit if new windows extend the useful life of the building (which they would do if they old ones were in such disrepair).

    However the extent to which it can be done is limited and I don’t see dumping a £750k capital receipt into delivery of services as something which could be classified as being ‘around the margins’

    Sokay, in answer to your question about Mike Russell’s statement I certainly wouldn’t be minded to make a call on reasoning for it. Only he could answer that. As far as I know he doesn’t have an extensive background in finance/accountancy and the restrictions on capital receipts and accountancy rules about revenue and capital budgets are a bit of a nerdy techie thing!!

    Anyway this is all a bit after the lord mayor’s show now as the decision has been made (the wrong one in my opinion). Whilst I say the wrong one I say so based on the arguments put forward on here by people who are far closer to it than I am (and also people who I have respect for). It would be a better scenario if those councillors who opposed the sale would be forthcoming about their counter arguments. However as we have seen many times in the past elected members ed by the nose by Cllr Walsh are rarely forthcoming in their opinions

  • Russell writes to councillors on Castle Toward decision tomorrow as some are denied a vote
    It is maybe worth highlighting that the sale of the asset and the money received (whether it be £750k, £1.75m or something in between) has no impact on the revenue budget as has been suggested on here. Councils are restricted in the way they spend receipts from the sale of assets.
    Predominantly they are only allowed to use capital receipts on further capital expenditure and not for routine revenue expenditure – the revenue and capital budgets are very distinct (albeit with some overlap due to the need for the revenue budget to take account of incurred interest costs and ongoing maintenance of capital assets).

    So the £1m ‘discount’ will not impact on the revenue budget of any area. What does impact the revenue budget right now is the ongoing maintenance costs which have been mentioned many times.

    Whether it is a paper transaction or not is debatable. I am assuming the valuation of £1.75m is based on open market value however that might not be the case. If it was available for sale on the open market would it realistically fetch £1.75m and would there be potential buyers? If the answer to either of those questions is ‘no’ then it isn’t really a £1m discount.

    Someone else suggested a risk that a buyer could get future planning permission on the land and turn round a tidy profit. As far as I know there would be nothing preventing the council putting a clawback clause into the sale contract which would protect them against such an event. Some sort of sliding clawback (i.e. if the buyer resells the asset for a profit within 3 years then 70% of any profit goes back to the council, between 3 and 6 years, 40%, 10 years 20% etc etc). Such a clawback has been used by Scottish Ministers in the past so I assume it would be an option open to the council.

  • Outright win for John Armour and SNP in South Kintyre
    The low turnout doesn’t surprise me. I think the referendum has exhausted people of politics temporarily and whilst I do think there will be a short term increase in the support for SNP candidates in local elections as a show of support this is slightly tempered in A&B because, quite frankly, the local SNP in A&B have been something of a shambles.

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16 Responses to Yet another success for a school the previous …

  1. Yet another success for a school the previous administration, and in particular Cllr Marshall’s criteria, would have us believe is failing.

    A little encouragement and a little support and our rural schools can, and do, demonstrate quite how effective they are and quite how well they deliver education.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  2. So, is this Aileen Goodall one of these much maligned immprovement officers we keep hearing newsie and FA rubbishing??

    Mmm??

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    • We could do chapter and verse on QIOs in general and in particular but it seems thrawn to do that right at the moment because our hope is that things will improve under new political guidance.

      ARSN was always aware that QIOs follow instructions from their employer and indeed it was obvious that some were uncomfortable with the roles they had during the closure consultations, not least the dreadful scripts they had to read from (Vygotsky indeed!).

      Now that there’s a new administration, we hope to see more of the kind of work Aileen Goodall is doing. Given all the negative tensions involved in the closure debacle, I’m sure it’s what our QIOs would rather be doing.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

        • Just checked our time logs. We posted the update at 08.23 and Simon’s comment to which Barmore 2 refers was posted at 09.09.
          Apologies.
          I had done this time log check myself and had not noticed the days, only the hours.
          Simon posted his comment on 3rd June at 9.09pm.
          Our update to the article was on 4th June at 08.23am.
          Lynda

          Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  3. It is certainly very interesting to hear what has been happening in Kilmodan.Has this been successful in the other schools across Argyll?
    I would love to hear from the teachers and support staff on the closure story now that they are allowed a voice without
    the threat of disciplne.Or have all the bosses seen the light.Still a lot of money being paid to the QIO,s or is this new title a change or additional staff?
    I would hope that the education department and Carol Walker,s so called leadership will be examined very quickly by the new council along with giving us the answers to spygate and Jo Smith.Is she still sitting at home being paid to get a sun tan.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    • Well said Barmore 2. Kilmodan deserve our congratulations, as do all the wee schools who keep clocking up one prize or another for doing really special and wonderful work.

      I reckon Argyll & Bute always had the best chance of implementing the Curriculum for Excellence because the wee schools already had to operate that way to an extent and the teachers really know how to make it work. Let’s hope they’re allowed to flourish now so the kids, and their communities, can move forward with security and confidence.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  4. Yes – well done to EDOs, so why shouldnt all the QIOs become EDOs?
    And I hope that Neil McIntyre gets the answers to his questions quickly – I cant think of a good reason why he shouldnt.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  5. Regarding the update which reads ‘Auileen Goodall is an Educational Development Officer – not a Quality Improvement Officer. This keeps the pressure on the question of just what the very many QIOs at Argyll and Bute council actually do and whether that is worth what it costs us’

    This is an important point of discussion. It would be interesting to know what are the remits of both roles and how much overlap is there. Based purely on title (which can obviously be misleading) they certainly appear to be roles which must have a lot of similar responsibilities. Are we getitng value for money from these two roles?

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

    • I think the best people to enquire this with would be Head Teachers across Argyll & Bute and perhaps ask them to list the areas they have received help or have found QIOs and QIMs to actually have been a benefit to them.

      I already know the thoughts of one area – so I would expect much silence to follow such a request.

      Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  6. Surely after the chaos of the rural schools proposed closures the points made by Integrity and Crazy in response to this story would be a great place to start for our new councillors The investigation into duplication of responsibility across the whole spectrum of council departments will surely follow.Jobs can be created and services improved if someone has the sense and guts to do it.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  7. I expect the new Lead Councillor on Education, who knows his area of reponsibilty , possibly better than his appointed staff, to lay down the law to his staff as to policies and guidance. The days of paid staff laying down policy, and failing to give correct information to the elected members and the Council as a whole, are over. One such occurrence such as we have seen in the last few years will lead, I hope, not to resignations and “settlements” but to termination with no recompence. The first real test will probably come in the next 2 weeks with the report on Spygate and the dealing with the culprits in that affair.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

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