Tag Archives: Gerry Leonard

Council rivals unite to stop school closing

Evening Times
THREE Labour councillors have struck an alliance with SNP rivals in an attempt to overturn a decision by the city council on the closure of a special needs school in Glasgow.

The move sees three members of the ruling administration in the north of the city join forces with two Nationalists to use city council procedures to thwart the plans to integrate children at the Gadburn school into a nearby mainstream primary.

The Labour councillors, including Gerry Leonard, a major party figure in the Springburn area, and their SNP rivals are upset that the head of education, Cllr Jean McFadden, is alleged to have said only a Nationalist elected member raised an objection to the plans.

Mr Leonard and colleagues Gilbert Davidson and Catherine McMaster dispute this and have signed up to the SNP plan to have last month’s decision revisited.

They claim the education department has been too hasty in its plans to shut Gadburn and that most parents are fearful of the impact of integration with a mainstream primary on their children.

We have been talking to parents to get a workable plan
Instead, they have been championing a joint campus with Barmulloch Primary.

Under council rules, five elected members are required to sign a “call-in” notice to have the decision revisited.

It is understood this is the first time there has been a clear bipartisan strategy involving Labour members to undo an administration decision.

Councillor Grant Thoms, who instigated the call-in, said: “The education department is being too hasty at attempting to close Gadburn Special School.

“Councillors have been talking to parents to get a workable plan so the two schools could share the same building in Germiston but keep their separate identities.

“I have no doubt co-location is the way forward to give parents and pupils time to adjust to such a drastic change.

A council spokeswoman said: “A call-in allows scrutiny and enables local elected members to support their constituents.”

Cronyism – Follow up

Thanks go to Gerry Braiden at the Herald for taking the time sift through the bewilderingly complex details of these quangos.

As an exercise in Blairite civic reform the theory was simple: crack the city state of Glasgow and the rest would fall into line, domino style.

But rather than blaze the trail for Scotland, the creation of arm’s-length companies by the nation’s largest authority has raised more questions about accountability and transparency than provide solutions for weathering the economic crisis or, indeed, providing a model for 21st century public services.

Following revelations that former leader Steven Purcell, who resigned amid blackmail fears and admissions of alcohol and drug abuse, used his network of Aleos to buy the support of friends, colleagues and even some dissidents, it has now emerged that he and his councillor colleagues set their own salaries for sitting on their boards.

When setting up the Aleos, a group including elected members and department officials, would look at what councillors were receiving from sitting on outside bodies such as the SECC, health or fire boards and what the special responsibility allowances – since scrapped for being overused and untenable – were paying. From that they would arrive at a figure they believed best reflected the responsibilities being undertaken in the new Aleo. This would then be approved by the council’s head of finance.

More at heraldscotland

“The sheer weight of numbers means Labour always has the ultimate veto but there is a valid argument that all parties have been complicit.”

Brilliant! Absolutely magnificent!

Because all the parties are involved there’s less chance of it getting sorted, if at all. What a shower of ********!

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