Saturday, 5 July 2014

Extended Schools In Shoeburyness To Close

I read with some dismay at the decision of Shoeburyness High School to withdraw funding for the Extended Schools Initiative, which runs schemes not just for the school but for people of all ages in the East of Southend.

The work has been highly valued which resulted in one of the co-ordinators, Karen Stock, receiving an OBE for her work in the role. It was the Extended Schools programme which organised the Shoebury Debates, which led to pupils gaining £40,000 in funding for two new crossings at the Elm Road roundabout.

I had concerns when the headteacher Mark Schofield became a super headteacher, also taking over control of Cecil Jones, that the quality of education at Shoeburyness High School would suffer. The decision to axe Extended Schools compounds my fears.

I was pleased to see Independent Party councillor Mike Assenheim and my former colleague Roger Hadley outside the school condemning the decision. I was rather surprised to see that Shoeburyness Independent Party councillor chose to criticise Mike and Roger for forming an alliance in condemning the decision rather than joining them in the fight.

Is this woman completely and utterly bonkers and finally lost the plot? I would have previously suggested that the decision to criticise was a deep seated loathing of Conservatives but considering she tried to broker a deal with the Conservative Group after the local elections to be a portfolio holder I'm not so sure.

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