Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Building Schools for the Future??

This afternoon there was an update session for councillors on this very important topic, but with not much news to update! It seems that the minister concerned, Ed Balls MP, reads every submission document personally and as he's not been in his office recently the pile has built up. Until he reads the Stockton document it can't be signed and sealed so no-one can say publicly who the potential co-sponsors of our 2 academies are. No-one knows when the documents will be signed so no-one can discuss where the buildings might go, and so it goes on. I couldn't have invented a more frustrating system if I'd been asked.
Meanwhile the money for the South of the Borough schools to be refurbished or rebuilt won't be available until some time in the dim and distant future when all the people currently worrying themselves silly about it wil have left school or ceased to be parents of school age children or retired from the council or the schools concerned. I have uncomfortable visions of Egglescliffe school ceasing to exist because the buildings have crumbled away in the intervening time.
There again, we might have a change of government and the whole idea go back into the melting pot and we have to start all over again. There's got to be a better way of allocating government spending than all this bidding for money. But I'm just a local councillor - what do I know.
I do know that the spring bulbs we've had planted over the last 2 years are giving a beautiful display this month along verges and on grassy islands. Thank you to all the people who suggested places for them.
We're also moving nearer to getting street lighting and surfacing on the path from Yarm Rd to West View Tce and getting better lighting on the path parallel to Yarm Rd leading to St Andrews Close and Wentworth Way. Next winter should see great improvements on those two paths. We still haven't got a solution to lighting the railway bridge at the end of Newsam Rd but we're working on it.

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