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Labour’s Local Election Campaign 2014

Ambitious for our Children and Grandchildren


We are focused on ensuring the local schools that most Sutton children attend continue to improve so parents and children feel there is good provision for the child regardless of ability

Labour will:
1. Wherever possible and working in partnership with cooperative business enterprises, seek to develop and expand extended school provision across the whole borough. We would work with a future Labour Government in its plans to extend free childcare for three and four year olds from 15 hours to 25 hours per week for working parents

2. Invest in services to help local families at an early stage and welcome the existence of Co-operative childcare in the borough

3. Whilst recognising the importance of proper nutrition to educational attainment, explore the widest provision of free school lunches across all school phases, but in particular for all foundation phase children. We will seek to provide kitchen facilities in all schools and also explore provision of free breakfast and after school clubs.

4. By working in partnership with existing maintained provision, support all Sutton schools to achieve Good or Outstanding Ofsted judgments over the Ofsted cycle of inspections.

5. Encourage a local model of provision and seek to expand educational opportunities through cooperation between all Borough schools through federation or cluster arrangements, to share and maximise the effective use of resources.

6. Seek to improve opportunities for secondary phase students to transfer between schools where the need of the individual student warrants this, regardless of schools’ admission arrangements at 11.

7. Support school improvement through a Continuous Professional Development programme or a series of Teachmeets to share good practice. We will also work to encourage all schools to contribute towards facilities time for the teaching and support staff unions to have adequate representation.

8. Recognise the essential contribution of governors to the Borough’s education services and work in partnership with the Forum of Sutton Governors to support governors and seek their views.

9. Meet the need for additional secondary phase places in the borough by supporting the expansion of existing schools and by building a new comprehensive secondary school; this school to be sponsored by an existing Sutton Academy Trust or by a Co-operative Foundation Trust or similar not for profit body.

10. Facilitate the free movement of students between all the Borough’s sixth forms, thereby offering the widest possible range and combination of academic, vocational and technical course choices. This will be achieved by encouraging the integration of current provision made in the borough’s secondary schools and colleges of further education.

11. Ensure the Citizenship curriculum should include the role of civil society, co-operatives and mutual ownership. Business studies should include details of co-operative and mutual structures/legal forms. Every child in Sutton will be offered the opportunity to join a credit union to familiarise them with responsible credit and saving.

12. Support creation of Code Clubs in all our primary schools to give Sutton children a head start in learning about computing.

13. Promote a positive image of our young people in the media such as demonstrated by the Co-operative groups’ 'Truth about Youth' project. We will review all policies such as citizenship, planning and retail licensing with a view to challenging gender stereotyping and sexual objectification of young women.

14. Support children with special educational needs by ensuring that provision is based on need rather than geography. We will also seek to provide additional resources in the areas of Educational Psychology and Speech and Language therapy.

15. Ensure that all Sutton’s children’s safeguarding and social services are fit for purpose. Labour will provide early supportive interventions to keep families together, reducing the need for foster placement and forced adoption. At the same time, where appropriate, we will support existing foster carers in the borough by providing additional support services and increasing the Foster Carer’s Grant. We will continue to use the Fostercare Co-operative which has successfully found homes for difficult- to- place children.

16. Work with Transport for London and where possible co-operative providers, to establish a borough wide Green School Travel Scheme, to foster lifetime sustainable travel patterns and reduce the use of environmentally damaging vehicles on the “school run”. We will encourage ‘walking buses’ and similar schemes wherever possible.

17. Conduct a fundamental review of the borough’s Youth Service with particular emphasis on:

• Provision of a comprehensive network of youth centres across the borough, with a view to identify sites for new facilities, particularly in Hackbridge and Beddington.
• Better and more cost effective use of existing facilities
• Provision of additional Outreach Youth Workers, with a brief to target young people at risk of causing nuisance or engaging in anti-social behaviour.
• Increasing co-operation and support for voluntary sector provision of Youth activities (ie Woodcraft Folk, Scouts, Guides, Boys/Girls Brigades etc)

18. Consult young people as to whether they would wish to have an elected Young Mayor for Sutton with a budget to spend.

19. Work with schools to re-establish a local careers service.

20.seek to identify and mitigate or remove barriers preventing the most economically challenged young people in Sutton from attending university and other forms of tertiary education.

 

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