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School Governors offered £250 a day to act as “consultants.”

May 15, 2015 9:30 AM

School governors in Rhondda Cynon Taff have been invited to apply for consultant governor positions within the Central South Consortium which covers RCT, Merthyr, Vale of Glamorgan, Bridgend and Cardiff.

The Consortium is one of several regional partnerships set up by the Welsh Labour Government with the aim of improving school standards. However questions have been raised as to how much money is being spent on the scheme and how effective it is.

Welsh Liberal Democrat Councillor Mike Powell says far too much is being spent behind the scenes and not enough in schools where it would make a difference.

"This is a prime example of how money is being wasted in the education system. How can they justify offering governors £250 a day to advise in schools which need extra help when governors generally offer their services for nothing?

"£250 a day equates to a pro rata salary of £65,000. This at a time when cut backs are being made across the board and school budgets are feeling the strain.

Welsh Liberal Democrat Spokesperson for Education Aled Roberts AM has been questioning the Education Minister for some time on the effectiveness of the Consortia and the lack of clarity over funding. He said

"For too long these consortia seem to have been working in isolation and removed from scrutiny.

"In early January I made a number of enquiries to all the consortia regarding funding but they have chosen to ignore those requests and I am still waiting for replies.

"As recipients of millions of pounds in public funding the consortia must work to gain and retain the confidence of everyone concerned, but to date that confidence has been damaged by a lack of engagement by the consortia.

"The Welsh Government has presented education consortia as the drivers in improving school attainment. As Assembly Members we need the necessary information to enable us to scrutinise the work of the consortia and their capacity to deliver. Without that information, children, their parents and the teaching profession itself cannot be reassured that the task of improving school standards will be achieved".