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NEWS ROUNDUP: Leeds high schools deficit

 

05/10/21 | Leeds high schools deficit | The main fund for local authority-run secondary schools in Leeds is facing a financial deficit of more than £5m this year, according to documents published by Leeds City Council.

The paper, set to go before the authority’s schools forum next week, adds that if no action is taken, the dedicated schools grant would overspend at a rate of between £6.8m and £8.1m every year until 2027.

It added that most of the overspend came from the high needs block of school places, and that its funding deficit by the end of the 2021/22
municipal year is likely to be just under £5.5m.

This includes an overspend of £1.839m in the current year, as well as a deficit of more than £3m brought forward from 2020/21. This will be offset slightly by use of cash reserves.

The DSG only pertains to LEA-controlled schools. Academies, which are not run by councils, are unaffected by the funding.

A report stated:”Dedicated Schools Grant income due is £2,365,000 less than budgeted.

“However, the majority of this is due to the conversion of North West SILC into two special academies where DSG due to local authorities is reduced to allow place funding to be paid to academies directly.

“This is offset by a reduced cost in the expenditure incurred on SILC and Resourced Provision place funding. It is possible there may still be some very minor changes to the income received.”

It added that there was also a number of under-spends, particularly at post-16 education where there is a “much lower number of (special educational needs) students than expected”.

Another report, looking into the fund’s medium-term financial strategy, stated: “Over the five year period 2022/23 – 2026/27 the DSG is projected to overspend at a rate of between £6.8m and £8.1m per year if no action is taken.

“The majority of the overspend is on the high needs block and the council is currently reviewing the options available for managing this as required by the Department for Education.”

Both reports will be discussed by Leeds City Council’s schools forum at a meeting on Thursday, October 7.

(LDRS | Richard Beecham)

 

Regional transport chiefs want to close Cottingley Rail Station in south Leeds, as part of multi million pound plans to build another station further down the track.

The plans would effectively see the facility, currently in a residential area of south Leeds, move half a mile down the line to a site at the White Rose office park.

Closure plans for Cottingley Station had previously been hinted at in council papers, but only now have the proposals finally been announced, with confirmation the site is expected to close at some point between late 2022 and Spring 2023.

A consultation paper by WYCA claimed Cottingley station didn’t meet accessibility standards and was too far from “business and education opportunities” than the proposed new site.

Work to build the new White Rose station is expected to start at some point later this year, and be finished by the end of 2022.

A report, set to go before regional decision-makers next week, stated: “West Yorkshire Combined Authority is currently considering the closure of Cottingley Rail Station and is undergoing a consultation process.

“This closure is being considered due to the construction of a new, more accessible station 800 metres from Cottingley at White Rose with extensive walking and cycling routes to and from the wider community.”

A consultation document said the option of not opening the new station, or keeping both stations had been looked at, but that Cottingley did not meet the “accessibility standards”, adding: “Cottingley is situated further from businesses, education opportunities and the nearby shopping centre.

“Secondly, White Rose is being progressed with a combination of public and private funding which would not have been available for Cottingley.”

The document claims the new station would include lift and staircase access, improved cycle accessibility, cycle storage, CCTV and shelters.

According to previously published papers, the station is forecast to cost around £22m, with £5m expected to come from the council’s Connecting Leeds grant scheme; £5m from the Government’s New Stations Fund, £12m from its Transforming Cities Fund, and “up to £4.5m” from Munroe K.

Feedback and comments can be left on the project’s YourVoice page at https://www.yourvoice.westyorksca.gov.uk/cottingley

(LDRS | Richard Beecham)

 

A cinema-goer who suffered a heart-attack while watching latest Bond movie No Time to Die was saved by fellow films fans who performed CPR on him.

Malcolm Clarke, 81, went into cardiac arrest at the Odeon cinema in Sheffield, South Yorks., on Saturday, October 2, during a screening of the new Bond movie.

Four members of the audience, believed to have included a doctor and a nurse, came to Malcolm’s aid and helped keep him alive as the screen was evacuated.

Thankfully, their efforts were successful and paramedics soon arrived and took Malcolm to Northern General Hospital, where he remains in a stable condition.

Malcolm’s son-in-law, Andrew Wileman, said: “Four very helpful people in the audience worked on him for about 15 minutes because he had lost consciousness.

“Those four people just disappeared in the aftermath, it was two ladies and two gentlemen.

"They saved his life in the cinema aisle, no doubt about it.

"The consultant at the hospital said the prompt and quick CPR had saved his life in the cinema before the ambulance got there. He would have died, there's no doubt."

Malcom, of Bournemouth, had been revisiting childhood haunts in and around Chesterfield where he grew up as a belated treat for his 80th birthday.

He had gone to see the new Bond film with wife Jacky on Saturday night when he suddenly took ill.

Andrew said he was "completely unconscious" for around 15 minutes as the good Samaritans worked to save his life using the on-site defibrillator at the pictures.

He added: "There is something funny about being at the Bond film called No Time To Die and him doing this in the cinema.

"He grew up in Chesterfield and the trip was a belated treat for him for his 80th birthday last year."

Malcolm is in a critical but stable condition and will need surgery, Andrew added.

The family has been reunited with three of the four lifesavers but would like to meet the fourth to say thank you.

He added: "He's critical, but stable. They're just debating what action to take next.

"He's going to have to have surgery at some point, but for now he's stable and doing well.

"Malcolm’s wife, Jacky, wants to find the people that helped him and kept him alive, just to say thank you.”

(SWNS | Steven Ross & Ashley Pemberton)


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05/10/21 | Leeds high schools deficit | The main fund for local authority-run secondary schools in Leeds is facing a financial deficit of more than £5m this year, according to documents published by Leeds City Council.

The paper, set to go before the authority’s schools forum next week, adds that if no action is taken, the dedicated schools grant would overspend at a rate of between £6.8m and £8.1m every year until 2027.

It added that most of the overspend came from the high needs block of school places, and that its funding deficit by the end of the 2021/22
municipal year is likely to be just under £5.5m.

This includes an overspend of £1.839m in the current year, as well as a deficit of more than £3m brought forward from 2020/21. This will be offset slightly by use of cash reserves.

The DSG only pertains to LEA-controlled schools. Academies, which are not run by councils, are unaffected by the funding.

A report stated:”Dedicated Schools Grant income due is £2,365,000 less than budgeted.

“However, the majority of this is due to the conversion of North West SILC into two special academies where DSG due to local authorities is reduced to allow place funding to be paid to academies directly.

“This is offset by a reduced cost in the expenditure incurred on SILC and Resourced Provision place funding. It is possible there may still be some very minor changes to the income received.”

It added that there was also a number of under-spends, particularly at post-16 education where there is a “much lower number of (special educational needs) students than expected”.

Another report, looking into the fund’s medium-term financial strategy, stated: “Over the five year period 2022/23 – 2026/27 the DSG is projected to overspend at a rate of between £6.8m and £8.1m per year if no action is taken.

“The majority of the overspend is on the high needs block and the council is currently reviewing the options available for managing this as required by the Department for Education.”

Both reports will be discussed by Leeds City Council’s schools forum at a meeting on Thursday, October 7.

(LDRS | Richard Beecham)

 

 

 

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