UPDATED: Opposition councillors launch last minute bid to save Lyndale

Opposition councillors launch last minute bid to save Lyndale

Opposition councillors launch last minute bid to save Lyndale

First published in News
Last updated
Wirral Globe: Photograph of the Author by , Senior Reporter

A LAST minute bid to save a Wirral special needs school has been submitted by opposition members calling for the borough’s ruling cabinet to recognise the huge opposition to plans to close the school.

The consultation on the future of the Lyndale School, in Eastham, closed last week after Wirral Council announced it was “minded” to close it, citing a drop in pupil numbers and a change in Government funding.

More than 10,590 people signed a petition to keep the school open, with 89% of Globe readers also believing it should be saved.

A “Notice of Motion” - written by Wallasey Conservative Cllr Paul Hayes and supported by nine other councillors, including Tory leader Jeff Green – calls on the cabinet to “end the anguish and uncertainty suffered by pupils and their parents and carers” by confirming that Lyndale will stay open.

It will be discussed by full council when they meet on Monday, July 14.

Cllr Hayes said: “Having attended the consultation meeting at the Lyndale School, I am more convinced than ever that this very special, small school must be kept open.

"The alternatives to Lyndale just aren't there - it educates and cares for those children with the most profound learning difficulties, often suffering from serious ongoing health issues. 

“We must use every possible option to persuade the Cabinet to think again, to listen to the parents and staff and reject the plan for closure.

"It takes courage to admit when you are wrong but I hope the cabinet will do this and stop the distress and upset this issue has caused to so many people in Wirral. I will be the first to congratulate the cabinet if they do."

But Cllr Phil Davies, leader of the council, said it would be inappropriate and potentially illegal for the cabinet to make a decision on the future of Lyndale before the consultation exercise had come to an end.

Wirral Globe: EXCLUSIVE: Council leader Phil Davies writes for the Globe - why major shake-up will make Wirral more open, more transparent and more accountable

  • Council leader Phil Davies says it would be wrong for cabinet to make a decision on the future of Lyndale at this time.

He said: "They are asking that the cabinet confirms that the school will remain open when we next meet but I can't give a commitment to that at the moment.

"We are currently in a consultation exercise. We are having a special cabinet meeting on September 4 to consider the outcome of the consultation exercise so I can't give a commitment now that will say it will stay open.

"It is important to maintain an open mind around all of the options to do with Lyndale and come back to that special meeting on September 4 to make a decision.

"I think it would be completely wrong and would negate the whole consultation exercise if we just made a decision now."

Cllr Davies added: "We promised people we would do a proper consultation exercise looking at all of the options on the table and I just think it would be unfair to all the people who have put a huge amount of time and effort into that to just give an answer now.

"To make a decision now I think would create all sorts of issues on the legality of that."

Julia Hassall, Wirral’s director of children’s services, added: "We are currently considering the options available in relation to the Lyndale School.

"We would like to reassure parents that we are aiming to resolve the long term future of Lyndale as expediently as possible, to avoid any more doubt and uncertainty than is necessary.

"A report will go to cabinet in September once we have had a chance to look at all the options."

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What has happened since the closure threat was first announced in December?

December 12: Wirral Council announced it was “minded” to close the school.
December 16: A petition to save the school reaches 3,000 signatures (it now has 6,443).
December 20: Parents ask the council for more time before a report is submitted to cabinet.
January 16: Wirral’s ruling cabinet agrees to consult on the closure of Lyndale.
January 21: Tory lead describes closing Lyndale as an "act of educational vandalism".
January 29: Opposition councillors “call-in” the decision and ask for it to be reviewed.
February 4:  Call-in meeting cancelled after bureaucratic bungling means council is in breach of its own constitution.
February 11: Education Secretary Michael Gove pledges his support for the school.
February 14: Wirral South MP Alison McGovern chairs a public meeting over Lyndale’s future.
February 27: Co-ordinating committee uphold cabinet’s decision in rearranged call-in meeting.
April 2: Wirral Council launches 12-week consultation.
April 4: Lyndale parents brand closure consultation 'misleading'.
May 16: Lyndale parents' dismay at Wirral's stay-away councillors.
June 17: Parents beg Wirral Council to keep Lyndale open.
June 20: Petition signed by 10,598 people presented to Graham Burgess.

Comments (11)

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12:32pm Tue 1 Jul 14

Llamedos 1 says...

Could somebody explain to me how a decision now to keep Lyndale open would be illegal ahead of the closing date for the consultation bearing in mind that a huge majority believe the school should be kept open. And when the time comes please dont forget which councillors showed a interest in supporting Lyndale and which councillors couldnt give a ****.
Could somebody explain to me how a decision now to keep Lyndale open would be illegal ahead of the closing date for the consultation bearing in mind that a huge majority believe the school should be kept open. And when the time comes please dont forget which councillors showed a interest in supporting Lyndale and which councillors couldnt give a ****. Llamedos 1
  • Score: 14

1:10pm Tue 1 Jul 14

WirralAl says...

To Wirral Councillors!

Does it not matter that these people have sufficient hardships that they should be left hanging on for another 2 months ?

Consultations with the council only ever seem to go in favour of the council as they are managed by the council. Will you make another decision behind closed doors and then make out that it was the consultations choice?

Time to grow a set and make the decision to keep Lyndale open. It is the right thing to do ! It is not a political opportunity it is what the people want and it is what any normal human would do.

To make these families wait 10 months is wrong.
To Wirral Councillors! Does it not matter that these people have sufficient hardships that they should be left hanging on for another 2 months ? Consultations with the council only ever seem to go in favour of the council as they are managed by the council. Will you make another decision behind closed doors and then make out that it was the consultations choice? Time to grow a set and make the decision to keep Lyndale open. It is the right thing to do ! It is not a political opportunity it is what the people want and it is what any normal human would do. To make these families wait 10 months is wrong. WirralAl
  • Score: 18

3:27pm Tue 1 Jul 14

Joeblogg85 says...

Consultation! There's a word to cunjure with.

My understanding of consulting with people was to listen to their views. If you are going to consult and then ignore the views given, then can what is the point of the exercise?

Consulting has now become the Councils growth industry. If you are in this department then fear not, your job is safe as it seems not a decision is made these days without consulting with the people.

My understanding of local government is that Council Officers are paid to make decisions and these are ratified by Elected Members. When did we reach the point where no-one wants to make a decision?

In this particular matter more people have responded than the whole of the last Council consultation What Really Matters?, so what's the problem?

My gut feeling is that the Council clearly want to close the school but are struggling to find a way around the result of the consultation. To say it would be illegal to reverse the decision is clearly nonsense. Just another stalling tactic by Davies.

You can bet your bottom dollar that if 10,000 people wanted to close it down then the a Council would have already done so.
Consultation! There's a word to cunjure with. My understanding of consulting with people was to listen to their views. If you are going to consult and then ignore the views given, then can what is the point of the exercise? Consulting has now become the Councils growth industry. If you are in this department then fear not, your job is safe as it seems not a decision is made these days without consulting with the people. My understanding of local government is that Council Officers are paid to make decisions and these are ratified by Elected Members. When did we reach the point where no-one wants to make a decision? In this particular matter more people have responded than the whole of the last Council consultation What Really Matters?, so what's the problem? My gut feeling is that the Council clearly want to close the school but are struggling to find a way around the result of the consultation. To say it would be illegal to reverse the decision is clearly nonsense. Just another stalling tactic by Davies. You can bet your bottom dollar that if 10,000 people wanted to close it down then the a Council would have already done so. Joeblogg85
  • Score: 7

3:42pm Tue 1 Jul 14

JohnON says...

How is it that the Council can announce that it is "minded" to close the school with no prior consultation but can't, apparently, rescind the announcement without one?
How is it that the Council can announce that it is "minded" to close the school with no prior consultation but can't, apparently, rescind the announcement without one? JohnON
  • Score: 5

4:08pm Tue 1 Jul 14

johnhardaker says...

God forbid if one of the councillors children were disabled then the school would have remained. It is typical of this couuncil to pick on the vunerable,the sick & needey ,by overcharging people with learning difficulties viz Martin Morton/AKA to the tune of nearly £750k Then pay AKA £370k for the report with wirral council having no case to answer, then the 4 week delay implementing social care,stoping meal on wheels to elderly residents,are you getting the picture, if you cant answer back or you are old or disabled the the council will pick on you.
The people in Brighton Street are souless & they forget they are "PUBLIC SERVANTS" & therefore should act in the public's interest & not their own self interest.
God forbid if one of the councillors children were disabled then the school would have remained. It is typical of this couuncil to pick on the vunerable,the sick & needey ,by overcharging people with learning difficulties viz Martin Morton/AKA to the tune of nearly £750k Then pay AKA £370k for the report with wirral council having no case to answer, then the 4 week delay implementing social care,stoping meal on wheels to elderly residents,are you getting the picture, if you cant answer back or you are old or disabled the the council will pick on you. The people in Brighton Street are souless & they forget they are "PUBLIC SERVANTS" & therefore should act in the public's interest & not their own self interest. johnhardaker
  • Score: 2

5:15pm Tue 1 Jul 14

Joeblogg85 says...

johnhardaker wrote:
God forbid if one of the councillors children were disabled then the school would have remained. It is typical of this couuncil to pick on the vunerable,the sick & needey ,by overcharging people with learning difficulties viz Martin Morton/AKA to the tune of nearly £750k Then pay AKA £370k for the report with wirral council having no case to answer, then the 4 week delay implementing social care,stoping meal on wheels to elderly residents,are you getting the picture, if you cant answer back or you are old or disabled the the council will pick on you.
The people in Brighton Street are souless & they forget they are "PUBLIC SERVANTS" & therefore should act in the public's interest & not their own self interest.
Hey John,

I support your views but vent my anger on the senior officers and politicians. The junior officers of the Council are just ordinary people just trying to get on. They most probably joined the Council with the best of intentions and unfortunately are now managed by this lot we are all currently burdened with.

There needs to be a wholesale clear out of senior managers and politicians and fresh blood bringing in before things begin to change. Just saying it doesn't make it so!
[quote][p][bold]johnhardaker[/bold] wrote: God forbid if one of the councillors children were disabled then the school would have remained. It is typical of this couuncil to pick on the vunerable,the sick & needey ,by overcharging people with learning difficulties viz Martin Morton/AKA to the tune of nearly £750k Then pay AKA £370k for the report with wirral council having no case to answer, then the 4 week delay implementing social care,stoping meal on wheels to elderly residents,are you getting the picture, if you cant answer back or you are old or disabled the the council will pick on you. The people in Brighton Street are souless & they forget they are "PUBLIC SERVANTS" & therefore should act in the public's interest & not their own self interest.[/p][/quote]Hey John, I support your views but vent my anger on the senior officers and politicians. The junior officers of the Council are just ordinary people just trying to get on. They most probably joined the Council with the best of intentions and unfortunately are now managed by this lot we are all currently burdened with. There needs to be a wholesale clear out of senior managers and politicians and fresh blood bringing in before things begin to change. Just saying it doesn't make it so! Joeblogg85
  • Score: 7

7:16pm Tue 1 Jul 14

keen gardener says...

Joeblogg85 wrote:
johnhardaker wrote:
God forbid if one of the councillors children were disabled then the school would have remained. It is typical of this couuncil to pick on the vunerable,the sick & needey ,by overcharging people with learning difficulties viz Martin Morton/AKA to the tune of nearly £750k Then pay AKA £370k for the report with wirral council having no case to answer, then the 4 week delay implementing social care,stoping meal on wheels to elderly residents,are you getting the picture, if you cant answer back or you are old or disabled the the council will pick on you.
The people in Brighton Street are souless & they forget they are "PUBLIC SERVANTS" & therefore should act in the public's interest & not their own self interest.
Hey John,

I support your views but vent my anger on the senior officers and politicians. The junior officers of the Council are just ordinary people just trying to get on. They most probably joined the Council with the best of intentions and unfortunately are now managed by this lot we are all currently burdened with.

There needs to be a wholesale clear out of senior managers and politicians and fresh blood bringing in before things begin to change. Just saying it doesn't make it so!
As I have said before regardless of what political party is voted in (local and national) and then gains majority, those that are in a post remain and they then 'cow tow' to those that they are answerable to. I am sorry but you cannot put 100% blame on those that are required to respond to whom you, I and others voted for. The Councillor I voted for did not retain his post - he and I have to live with that. So my view: what is occurring on Wirral is not just a local issue it is "national". Just think of how many Civil Servants are hiding behind ? whilst they collect their mega salaries. So may I ask that you look beyond the boundaries of Wirral. PS Yes, the majority did not vote recently..."shame on them".
[quote][p][bold]Joeblogg85[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]johnhardaker[/bold] wrote: God forbid if one of the councillors children were disabled then the school would have remained. It is typical of this couuncil to pick on the vunerable,the sick & needey ,by overcharging people with learning difficulties viz Martin Morton/AKA to the tune of nearly £750k Then pay AKA £370k for the report with wirral council having no case to answer, then the 4 week delay implementing social care,stoping meal on wheels to elderly residents,are you getting the picture, if you cant answer back or you are old or disabled the the council will pick on you. The people in Brighton Street are souless & they forget they are "PUBLIC SERVANTS" & therefore should act in the public's interest & not their own self interest.[/p][/quote]Hey John, I support your views but vent my anger on the senior officers and politicians. The junior officers of the Council are just ordinary people just trying to get on. They most probably joined the Council with the best of intentions and unfortunately are now managed by this lot we are all currently burdened with. There needs to be a wholesale clear out of senior managers and politicians and fresh blood bringing in before things begin to change. Just saying it doesn't make it so![/p][/quote]As I have said before regardless of what political party is voted in (local and national) and then gains majority, those that are in a post remain and they then 'cow tow' to those that they are answerable to. I am sorry but you cannot put 100% blame on those that are required to respond to whom you, I and others voted for. The Councillor I voted for did not retain his post - he and I have to live with that. So my view: what is occurring on Wirral is not just a local issue it is "national". Just think of how many Civil Servants are hiding behind ? whilst they collect their mega salaries. So may I ask that you look beyond the boundaries of Wirral. PS Yes, the majority did not vote recently..."shame on them". keen gardener
  • Score: 1

8:54pm Tue 1 Jul 14

Llamedos 1 says...

Joe, I totally agree with your comments on junior officers and the administrative staff, in fact I sincerely sympathise with them having to bow ,scrape and try to sort out the mess their incompetent muppet masters have created .The few junior staff I know well are totally demoralised and dont even know if they will have jobs by the end of the year unlike the top boys and girls who will continue to milk the cash cow in jobs they will continue to have as long as they want them or until they want the golden handshake.
Joe, I totally agree with your comments on junior officers and the administrative staff, in fact I sincerely sympathise with them having to bow ,scrape and try to sort out the mess their incompetent muppet masters have created .The few junior staff I know well are totally demoralised and dont even know if they will have jobs by the end of the year unlike the top boys and girls who will continue to milk the cash cow in jobs they will continue to have as long as they want them or until they want the golden handshake. Llamedos 1
  • Score: 5

10:20am Wed 2 Jul 14

WirralAl says...

keen gardener wrote:
Joeblogg85 wrote:
johnhardaker wrote:
God forbid if one of the councillors children were disabled then the school would have remained. It is typical of this couuncil to pick on the vunerable,the sick & needey ,by overcharging people with learning difficulties viz Martin Morton/AKA to the tune of nearly £750k Then pay AKA £370k for the report with wirral council having no case to answer, then the 4 week delay implementing social care,stoping meal on wheels to elderly residents,are you getting the picture, if you cant answer back or you are old or disabled the the council will pick on you.
The people in Brighton Street are souless & they forget they are "PUBLIC SERVANTS" & therefore should act in the public's interest & not their own self interest.
Hey John,

I support your views but vent my anger on the senior officers and politicians. The junior officers of the Council are just ordinary people just trying to get on. They most probably joined the Council with the best of intentions and unfortunately are now managed by this lot we are all currently burdened with.

There needs to be a wholesale clear out of senior managers and politicians and fresh blood bringing in before things begin to change. Just saying it doesn't make it so!
As I have said before regardless of what political party is voted in (local and national) and then gains majority, those that are in a post remain and they then 'cow tow' to those that they are answerable to. I am sorry but you cannot put 100% blame on those that are required to respond to whom you, I and others voted for. The Councillor I voted for did not retain his post - he and I have to live with that. So my view: what is occurring on Wirral is not just a local issue it is "national". Just think of how many Civil Servants are hiding behind ? whilst they collect their mega salaries. So may I ask that you look beyond the boundaries of Wirral. PS Yes, the majority did not vote recently..."shame on them".
This pathetic council have been duly elected by a small majority of people.

Total electorate 239,935

People who voted Labour 33983

People who voted for others 55227

People who did not vote 150725

So this Labour council only have about 15 % support of the people of Wirral. Which gives them the power to do what ever they want and implement any screw ball plans they want and without question????

This is not democracy 150,000 people did not vote as the system is floored in favour of the majority of the minority.

Give the people more say in what they vote for instead of some X on a slip of paper. We have to complete the census to tell them what they want to know. How about a census to tell them what we the People of Wirral want!! (The "what really matters" was a sham!)
[quote][p][bold]keen gardener[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Joeblogg85[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]johnhardaker[/bold] wrote: God forbid if one of the councillors children were disabled then the school would have remained. It is typical of this couuncil to pick on the vunerable,the sick & needey ,by overcharging people with learning difficulties viz Martin Morton/AKA to the tune of nearly £750k Then pay AKA £370k for the report with wirral council having no case to answer, then the 4 week delay implementing social care,stoping meal on wheels to elderly residents,are you getting the picture, if you cant answer back or you are old or disabled the the council will pick on you. The people in Brighton Street are souless & they forget they are "PUBLIC SERVANTS" & therefore should act in the public's interest & not their own self interest.[/p][/quote]Hey John, I support your views but vent my anger on the senior officers and politicians. The junior officers of the Council are just ordinary people just trying to get on. They most probably joined the Council with the best of intentions and unfortunately are now managed by this lot we are all currently burdened with. There needs to be a wholesale clear out of senior managers and politicians and fresh blood bringing in before things begin to change. Just saying it doesn't make it so![/p][/quote]As I have said before regardless of what political party is voted in (local and national) and then gains majority, those that are in a post remain and they then 'cow tow' to those that they are answerable to. I am sorry but you cannot put 100% blame on those that are required to respond to whom you, I and others voted for. The Councillor I voted for did not retain his post - he and I have to live with that. So my view: what is occurring on Wirral is not just a local issue it is "national". Just think of how many Civil Servants are hiding behind ? whilst they collect their mega salaries. So may I ask that you look beyond the boundaries of Wirral. PS Yes, the majority did not vote recently..."shame on them".[/p][/quote]This pathetic council have been duly elected by a small majority of people. Total electorate 239,935 People who voted Labour 33983 People who voted for others 55227 People who did not vote 150725 So this Labour council only have about 15 % support of the people of Wirral. Which gives them the power to do what ever they want and implement any screw ball plans they want and without question???? This is not democracy 150,000 people did not vote as the system is floored in favour of the majority of the minority. Give the people more say in what they vote for instead of some X on a slip of paper. We have to complete the census to tell them what they want to know. How about a census to tell them what we the People of Wirral want!! (The "what really matters" was a sham!) WirralAl
  • Score: 1

2:51pm Fri 4 Jul 14

Llamedos 1 says...

I have it on good authority that Lyndale has a stay of execution until the start of the 2015 new school year term. If this is the case thank you to all the people that have supported this fantastic special needs school. The battle is won but the war is not over. Pressure must be kept on the council.
I have it on good authority that Lyndale has a stay of execution until the start of the 2015 new school year term. If this is the case thank you to all the people that have supported this fantastic special needs school. The battle is won but the war is not over. Pressure must be kept on the council. Llamedos 1
  • Score: 2

3:17pm Fri 4 Jul 14

WIrral_Bloke says...

This council takes a lot WIrral taxpayers money in members allowances etc . They are elected to make decisions yet seem incapable of doing so without spending more public funds on consultants and legal advisers! They seem immune to the wishes of the public and the heartache they compound by not doing what they were voted in to do and MAKE A DECISION (I hope in favour of keeping Lyndale open), If they continue to defer and hesitate for god's sake vote them out in 2015 and tell your family, friends & colleagues to do the same,
This council takes a lot WIrral taxpayers money in members allowances etc . They are elected to make decisions yet seem incapable of doing so without spending more public funds on consultants and legal advisers! They seem immune to the wishes of the public and the heartache they compound by not doing what they were voted in to do and MAKE A DECISION (I hope in favour of keeping Lyndale open), If they continue to defer and hesitate for god's sake vote them out in 2015 and tell your family, friends & colleagues to do the same, WIrral_Bloke
  • Score: 1

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