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Gus, It will be a pity to reduce …

Comment posted Council issues prompt response on Martha Payne’s NeverSeconds clampdown by Anne Baird.

Gus, It will be a pity to reduce this to Westminster style adversarial politics. I know what Councillor McCuish said and it’s exactly as Dr D says, that’s leadership. I also know what he did and that was the right thing.

Now are you, after all those years of the old regime that we all agreed was awful, so keen to score a technical point against the SNP that you’ll worry away at it in an attempt to destabilise the hope for the future? Not that I think you’re in any danger of succeeding, but it seems a very negative aim.

Recent comments by Anne Baird

  • Council candidates, election battlegrounds and serious choices to be made
    I’m totally on board with that Larry. My passion for rural schools began with my own special child who was drowning in a large school. Once in a small rural school, he thrived. I’m wholly convinced that rural schools have something in particular to offer to children with special needs and there would be some merit in specifically placing them if travel wasn’t a barrier.

    Proper screening, careful and appropriate support and planning and wholehearted investment in early years should mean that our special children cost less in the long run. It should also mean they leave the education system feeling that they’re a rip-roaring success!

  • Council candidates, election battlegrounds and serious choices to be made
    In the interests of clarity it is my personal belief that the closure of any school should be with the consent of the majority of parents. This has been achieved, using the existing act, by other councils which take the act seriously, explore all options with parents and achieve a consensus. Where parents are persuaded that a new or merged school is appropriate and beneficial, the school closes. Where parents remain opposed, the school remains open. Perthshire, for instance, is proof that the act can and does work where officials have no intent to either circumvent the act or treat communities with contempt. I am clear that Robslee and Hillhead have both been treated with contempt by their councils.

    And you will know, since you seem so interested in the detail, that the life of a government minister is not a simple one. Currently, two councils are taking him to court for refusing to allow school closures. If you’re on the side of the schools, you will see it one way. If you’re on the side of the councils, you’ll see it another. I endeavour to see both sides as it’s only when we understand the interaction that we can solve the actual problem.

    So I wish you luck with your SNP bashing. Myself, I prefer bashing Lib Dems, but we’re both entitled to that as partisans. When it comes to schools though, if you’re truly on side, then we’d be better finding common ground and working on that. Even those who are disagreed on detail can work together on a common aim as ARSN has proved by bringing disparate groups and parties together in Argyll & Bute. So what’s the aim Simon? To protect schools? Or to attack the SNP?

  • School closures: Council plan to subvert COSLA concordat

    It is inelegant to philosophise over a weeping child.

    It’s also inelegant to do the party politics thing in a scenario where most parents couldn’t care less and are just irritated by overt politicking. If you’ll vote to keep schools open, you’ll do and no-one cares what rosette you’re wearing.

    Argyll & Bute Council is perfectly capable of meeting those conditions. It’s one of only two councils in Scotland with a budget surplus and the wisest thing it could do with that money is sustain its community of ratepayers. All its decisions should be predicated on sustaining population, not creating disincentives Otherwise it’s just a turkey voting for Christmas.

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