Catholic schools study plans for new super head
Published 24 Sep 2012 08:30 0 Comments
ALL four Roman Catholic schools in the Borders could have a single head teacher next year after a strategic review of the provision in the region.
Members of Scottish Borders Council's education executive are set to launch a two month consultation process involving parents and staff.
The first option put forward is to have a "super head" to lead and manage all four schools in Galashiels, Hawick, Peebles and Selkirk.
The alternative is to revert to the shared headships before the review took place with St Margaret's in Galashiels and Halyrude in Peebles linked together with a similar arrangement at St Margaret's in Hawick and St Joseph's in Selkirk.
Education executive chairman Sandy Aitchison and education officials will meet with parents within the next two months to explain the options available for the leadership of the schools after Easter 2013.
For the past year a review group of councillors and education officials, as well as church and parent council representatives, have been reviewing the provision of catholic education in the Borders. Recruitment problems with head teachers and "varied performance" in previous inspections prompted the review.
The review group came up with six options for the management of the schools but after in-depth discussions decided to only recommend two to the Education Executive who olast week unanimously backed the document.
Robert Fairburn, co-chairman of St Margaret's Parent Council in Galashiels, welcomed the start of the consultation process and urged parents of all four schools to participate.
He said: "I have a degree of sympathy for the review group because of the constraints they have been working under during the past year. St Margaret's in Galashiels is performing brilliantly at the moment under the current management structure but we recognise there has to be a long term solution for the leadership of the schools as we want consistency and to avoid constant staff upheaval.
"A single head for four schools is unprecedented in the Borders and we would have to be assured that the proper levels of support would be in place to allow the schools to be managed on a day-to-day basis. But the council will be saving three head teacher salaries alone with this set-up so the resources should be there to provide proper supportfor the person managing the schools over four different learning communities.
"It may well be alternative options emerge during meetings with parents which may find favour with the Education Executive and that is why we welcome the start of the consultation process."
This article appeared in Border Telegraph 25 Sep 12
Border Telegraph Poll
Do you think community councillors should support plans to spend £5,500 on a new lamp post in Galashiels to mark the Queen's Diamond Jubilee? See this week's Border Telegraph for more details.
This Poll is now closed.