School Investigations Carried Out Correctly Says Chairman

The Five Islands School

The investigations carried out at the Five Islands School have been carried out correctly and all concerns will be answered in the fullness of time.

That’s the view of Council Chairman, Mike Hicks, speaking in an interview on Radio Scilly yesterday.

Mike said, because of the confidential nature of the issues at the Five Islands School, only four members have been involved and he believes the investigation has been performed correctly and any concerns will be answered in the fullness of time.

He said the time for an inquest is when the final audit report comes in and people should trust the Councillors to do that properly. And he said he and his fellow Councillors have a lot of questions to ask and they will get answers.

From Radio Scilly

Hear the full interview with Mike Hicks

Mike feels that some of the concerns highlighted by Governors in a legal letter to the Council have been borne out of misinformation. He doesn’t believe that there has been a vendetta against the head teacher.

Mike says there has been no attempt by the Council to undermine the investigation at the school and he thinks that the contents of a confidential report from the auditors may have been leaked by Governors.

Governors have expressed concern that documents and computer equipment were removed by auditors without creating an original backup or copy, but Mike believes the auditors acted properly and within their remit.

Scilly’s MP, Andrew George, has said he’s still waiting for answers from the Council over several matters at the school but Mike says he has been kept completely up to date with developments at the school and he finds it surprising he would say that.

But he conceded that the MP might be right in suggesting a third party independent review as a way of reconciling the two sides.

Mike says he can also understand the concerns about the close relationship the Council have with Cornwall’s Legal Services department, but he said members also have an independent group of solicitors they can access through the Local Government Association and they’re being used at the moment.

And while he admitted the potential for legal costs to run into “many thousands of pounds,” he said the whole process won’t put an additional burden on the council tax payers.

 



2 Responses to School Investigations Carried Out Correctly Says Chairman

  1. Katie F July 9, 2012 at 11:47 pm

    By the same token, as a parent, I’m pleased to know that the chair of council is supporting those who seek to protect my child regardless of the pressure being applied by a, perhaps currently under informed, electorate. In a small place it is difficult to be brave (as it is everwhere else, if we’re honest) but it’s also very easy to jump on bandwagons. I’ve heard some very worrying rumours about the most extreme malpractice at the school and will be reserving judgement and refusing to participate in any witch hunts of councillors, council employees or governors until I feel that I’ve got a clearer picture of what’s been going on…

  2. Rose July 9, 2012 at 5:54 pm

    Is too much blame being put on the Councillors of Scilly? As elected councillors the majority surely wants what is best for Scilly. One wonders if they were fully aware of the chaotic situation arising at the school governance which subsequently resulted in the resignation of the Head Teacher. The governors were faced with an impossible situation and must still be feeling the effects of their decision. It will take a long time for the status quo to be regained. As a school governor myself I know that the correct procedures must always be adhered to.
    The blame for this current situation must surely rest with the person who holds the most authority. Were actions taken because of this person’s instruction? If so then a vote of no confidence, by islanders and councillors alike should bring about his or her suspension.
    It is difficult for those living in a small community to be brave and stand up against intimidation or unfairness but it is only by so doing that the islands will be restored to the community they should be – a place to live and work in with happiness, pride and a feeling of all working together for the common good.