Details emerge over which North Somerset education services could be outsourced

PUBLISHED: 13:00 22 April 2017

Some education services could be outsourced.

Some education services could be outsourced.

Archant

School services for children with autism and for those who need additional welfare support in North Somerset could soon be provided from outside the district.

Child counselling and psychology services are set to be outsourced.Child counselling and psychology services are set to be outsourced.

North Somerset Council is losing its education grant from the Government, and is therefore investigating how its services can be run by other organisations.

The authority’s executive will decide next week whether officers should start negotiating with Somerset County Council so some education services can be delivered by its not-for-profit traded service called Support Services for Education.

A final decision will not be made until October, but, if it is agreed, Somerset County Council may run some services as soon as April 2018.

Somerset County Council was chosen as the preferred option over South Gloucestershire Council, although this decision will also be put before councillors on Tuesday.

The report to be presented to the executive says: “The preferred alternative has been to transfer staff and service delivery to another local authority with a larger and more resilient continued education services function.”

It says Somerset County Council provides educational support on a ‘significantly’ larger scale than in North Somerset.

Services including education welfare and psychology, governor services and teachers which help with mental health could be offered outside North Somerset.

In some cases, North Somerset would not be involved in those services from September 2018 onwards. It would, however, monitor the quality of support for autistic children and certain aspects of education welfare and psychology.


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