Dan Peters 16 January 2020

Medway caves after Ombudsman rap

Medway Council has finally accepted the recommendations in a Local Government Ombudsman public interest report after a two-year stand-off.

The U-turn came after the Ombudsman issued a ‘rare’ further scolding of the council for ignoring its recommendations.

An Ombudsman judgement in September 2017 had ruled that the council should provide transport for a girl in its area because she was attending the nearest suitable school with places available.

However, council officers claimed the authority’s education travel assistance policy was compliant with Department for Education (DfE) statutory guidance and senior councillors refused to implement the Ombudsman’s recommendations.

Today, the council insisted it had ‘worked closely’ with the Ombudsman and pointed to independent legal advice that found it was ‘correctly following the DfE’s guidance on assessing school transport applications’.

However, the council’s portfolio holder of children’s services, Cllr Josie Iles, said: ‘We have apologised to the complainant for any distress this process may have caused. We respect the Ombudsman’s conclusions and will ensure the recommendations are actioned.’

Photo: © David Anstiss

Skate parks are not the only fruit image

Skate parks are not the only fruit

On Go Skateboarding Day, Susannah Walker asks councils and their leisure and park departments to think differently about what facilities they provide for teenagers.
SIGN UP
For your free daily news bulletin
Highways jobs

Service Managers

Blaby District Council
£42,614 - £45,648
Blaby is an attractive district in the heart of Leicestershire. Blaby, Leicester
Recuriter: Blaby District Council

Service Managers

Blaby District Council
£38,553 - £41,591
Blaby is an attractive district in the heart of Leicestershire. Blaby, Leicester
Recuriter: Blaby District Council

Service Managers

Blaby District Council
£38,553 - £41,591
Blaby is an attractive district in the heart of Leicestershire. Blaby, Leicester
Recuriter: Blaby District Council

Service Managers

Blaby District Council
£46,662 - £47,665
As a local authority striving to be the best, we are seeking passionate, strong leaders. Blaby, Leicester
Recuriter: Blaby District Council

Transformation Group Manager

Blaby District Council
£60,762 - £73,417
Blaby is an attractive district in the heart of Leicestershire. Blaby, Leicester
Recuriter: Blaby District Council

Partner Content

Circular highways is a necessity not an aspiration – and it’s within our grasp

Shell is helping power the journey towards a circular paving industry with Shell Bitumen LT R, a new product for roads that uses plastics destined for landfill as part of the additives to make the bitumen.

Support from Effective Energy Group for Local Authorities to Deliver £430m Sustainable Warmth Funded Energy Efficiency Projects

Effective Energy Group is now offering its support to the 40 Local Authorities who have received a share of the £430m to deliver their projects on the ground by surveying properties and installing measures.

Pay.UK – the next step in Bacs’ evolution

Dougie Belmore explains how one of the main interfaces between you and Bacs is about to change.