Swindon AdvertiserAppeal for school to open in the evening (From Swindon Advertiser)

Get involved! Send photos, video, news & views. Text SWINDON NEWS to 80360 or email us

Appeal for school to open in the evening

Swindon Advertiser: Derique Montaut outside Oak Tree School Derique Montaut outside Oak Tree School

COUN Derique Montaut is asking schools to open up their facilities after hours for community use.

On Monday the councillor for Liden, Eldene & Park South submitted a written question to cabinet member for children’s services, Fionuala Foley.

He asked whether schools, such as Oaktree Nursery and Primary School in Priory Road, should be opened up to help tackle community issues including youth-related crimes.

He said: “I put a simple request to the cabinet members that schools like Oaktree Primary School should open up their facilities for community use and events and I outlined the youth-related problems we have around Cavendish Square, including obesity.

“I believe this would be helpful to the Parks South area in tackling obesity, reducing anti-social behaviour and it would stop young people congregating around the Cavendish Square shopping precinct intimidating vulnerable people like the elderly.

“Her reply was she agreed with me and she said she would put her officers on to it to ask about the school’s provision before and after school and to what extent the school could make further use of its facilities.

“She also said that any responsibility for the use of school premises resides with the governing body.”

In the past, Derique asked council officers to look into whether schools, including Oaktree, under council control, could open up in the evenings for use by the community.

This would let people make make the most of the resources available in an effort to tackle youth crime and provide an alternative place for youngsters to meet other than Cavendish Square.

He said: “There are a number of issues of particular concern in the Park South area which could be dealt with by opening up the school after hours.

“It will help counter obesity because they will be able to play basketball or other activities and it will mean that young people don’t congregate in Cavendish Square and help to stop anti-social behaviour.”

But Derique was disappointed with the initial response from Oaktree, after they indicated the difficulties with opening up facilities to the wider community.

He said: “I have asked officers in the past to ask Oaktree if they would open up their facilities after hours and their response was to say that the use would cause a depreciation in value of their facilities and they asked for a cost of £25 per hour.

“I was disappointed that a community school that operates with taxpayers’ money raised these particular problems.

“But even if there is a cost this does not take away from the fact that we should be using our existing facilities for community use.”

Sue Rees, headteacher art Oaktree Nursery and Primary School, said that while it was important that schools support their local communities, it should not have a detrimental impact on their pupils.

She said: “While we always endeavour to work well with our community and try to support local initiatives when we can, it is important that we ensure that the facilities of the school are not compromised for the pupils in our care.”

Comments (3)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

10:11am Thu 27 Feb 14

p.bradbury services says...

No no this will not help the schools at all and Ground services is on site from 4.30 - 6 each day this will be a heath and safety for kids as well as the ground services,
Schools have no extra funds to pay staff and privet security for this at all.

Swindon council found some how £22000 for a park next to the school, This WILL be Destroyed in its first 8 weeks as most os the older kids will not and do not respect what the working tax payer gives them for free,

They have lots to do as it is, go for walks in the woods ply in the parks we have lots of BIG ones hear that was new play foot ball rounders etc.

But don't try and take what cash the school's have NOT got you are now silly to try this one.

Out services donate lost of time and items for this school and kids (not all) have smashed it up pulled it out etc and the school is CLOSED when this is done Due to this amount of vandalism school have hade to find lots of funds for 24hr CCTV.

So if this silly brain wave is set out where is the extra pay for staff and privet security for this to come from and the extra cash for the repairs.
No no this will not help the schools at all and Ground services is on site from 4.30 - 6 each day this will be a heath and safety for kids as well as the ground services, Schools have no extra funds to pay staff and privet security for this at all. Swindon council found some how £22000 for a park next to the school, This WILL be Destroyed in its first 8 weeks as most os the older kids will not and do not respect what the working tax payer gives them for free, They have lots to do as it is, go for walks in the woods ply in the parks we have lots of BIG ones hear that was new play foot ball rounders etc. But don't try and take what cash the school's have NOT got you are now silly to try this one. Out services donate lost of time and items for this school and kids (not all) have smashed it up pulled it out etc and the school is CLOSED when this is done Due to this amount of vandalism school have hade to find lots of funds for 24hr CCTV. So if this silly brain wave is set out where is the extra pay for staff and privet security for this to come from and the extra cash for the repairs. p.bradbury services
  • Score: -2

2:56pm Thu 27 Feb 14

trolley dolley says...

The previous post is a little hard to understand but if it is talking about Private security and vandalism then this should be paid for by the council using council manpower.

The idea is a good one but it is not going to ever go down well with the school governing body.

They would like to see the facilities shut and locked down after the school day is over and not exposed to the risk of vandalism.
The previous post is a little hard to understand but if it is talking about Private security and vandalism then this should be paid for by the council using council manpower. The idea is a good one but it is not going to ever go down well with the school governing body. They would like to see the facilities shut and locked down after the school day is over and not exposed to the risk of vandalism. trolley dolley
  • Score: 1

3:13pm Thu 27 Feb 14

p.bradbury services says...

What I mean is parks has a youth club .. lots of Big green parks to play in and woods .lakes and lots more and they don't use them now . So it this did go ahead why dose he just require moving them from coop site and move them over the fence to to the same thing ....
What I mean is parks has a youth club .. lots of Big green parks to play in and woods .lakes and lots more and they don't use them now . So it this did go ahead why dose he just require moving them from coop site and move them over the fence to to the same thing .... p.bradbury services
  • Score: 1

Comments are closed on this article.

click2find

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree