Friday 30 August 2019
The Policy & Resources Committee has today lodged three Amendments to the 'Transforming Education' Policy Letter from the Committee for Education, Sport & Culture.
The first Amendment seeks to ensure, first and foremost, the new models for secondary and post-16 education deliver value for money. It would require the Committee forEducation, Sport & Culture to provide detailed evidence-based proposals balancing the costs of the capital projects and outcomes for students. It would also ensure that the necessary funding comes from identified sources and is clearly allocated to specific areas of the transformation programme.
The second and third Amendments call on the Committee forEducation, Sport & Culture to provide detailed evidence for significant capital projects which fall outside of the secondary and post-16 education models, and outside of the resolutions previously agreed by the States Assembly in January 2018. Specifically, they relate to the proposed rebuild of La Mare De Carteret Primary, and the potential development of a 'Community Hub'.
The Policy & Resources Committee is not opposed to either of these projects moving forward, and will support the Committee forEducation, Sport & Culture to produce the necessary research and analysis so the States can make informed decisions. What is vitally important is that this work does not then delay the development of the secondary and post-16 education models.
The Policy & Resources Committee believes these Amendments should give the Assembly all of the reassurance it may need that the capital funding required to deliver these new models of education will be thoroughly scrutinised and held to the same high standard as any other capital project.
Deputy Gavin St Pier, President of the Policy & Resources Committee, said:
"The Policy & Resources Committee is supportive of the new secondary and post-16 models and keen to make sure they can progress, and aren't subject to unnecessary delays that will inevitably cause more uncertainty for many students, teachers and parents. But we are also alive to some of the concerns voiced about ensuring this significant spend is properly justified and scrutinised. Our Amendment offers a way forward that deals with both those concerns.
With regards to the rebuild of La Mare De Carteret Primary, and the development of Community Hubs, these are not part of the secondary or post 16 models and were not agreed by the States last year. Therefore they also need to go through the same process of political and financial scrutiny. This is not to say that the Policy & Resources Committee is against these projects, and this is not an attempt to 'kick them into the long grass'. In fact, our Committee will offer support to make sure the necessary research for these projects can happen quickly. But they cannot be given approval without demonstrating they have met those important standards."