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Education inspection follows critical report.

Byline: ELGAN HEARN Local democracy reporter

A schools watchdog has told a council's education service to be prepared for an official monitoring visit following a critical report.

Lead inspector Tony Bate told Powys County Council's learning and skills scrutiny committee there could be a series of meetings to discuss the authority's plans to answer the five recommendations set out in the critical Estyn report, published in September.

Mr Bate said: "We will return towards the end of November to facilitate what's called an improvement conference, which is the beginning of the process of follow up with the authority.

"In that meeting we will be looking at the initial planning for improvement that is proposed. We will spend most of the day picking through the plan and make comments, suggestions, challenge and evaluate. After that there will be a progress conference. And we will meet again and consider the overall progress the authority is making to meet those recommendations.

We will not be looking outside those recommendations." Mr Bate added a decision would be made at the progress conference, to either have another meeting or go straight to a monitoring inspection. "The end, however, of the process is the monitoring visit, when we decide on overall progress," he added.

The scrutiny committee had expected to see the Post Inspection Action Plan (PIAP), which will form the basis of the crunch meeting next month.

But the members were told it was not ready yet and the discussion looked at broader educational issues that education needed to be solved. New education portfolio holder, councillor Phyl Davies, fought back tears as he expressed his "alarm" as he read the report for the first time He said: "In summary, it's alarming and I have written alarm a lot times, and significant concerns is a common theme."

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Author:ELGAN HEARN Local democracy reporter
Publication:Shropshire Star (Shropshire, England)
Date:Nov 2, 2019
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