Just words

50 Key Questions

What We Need To Know:


1.      Why was the school considered unsafe by the Care Inspectorate when nothing had happened?

2.      Why did they refuse to allow staff cleared completely of any wrongdoing to return to school to support vulnerable young people who needed them?

3.      Why did they insist on a second investigation when the police had proved, and the pupils themselves had agreed, that nothing had happened?

4.      Why was the Head of School suspended at such a crucial time when it was clear that no wrongdoing had taken place? Had he remained in post, the school would still be open.

5.      Why did the Care Inspectorate impose an improvement notice on the school when the only possible consideration might be certain aspects of working practice and NOT child protection?

6.      Why did the Board of Governors not challenge the improvement notice by requesting a judicial review? They would have won and the school would still be open.

7.      Why did the Board consider Witherslack to be an appropriate body to conduct an 'independent' investigation when it was already clear that they were looking for an excuse to pull out of the takeover deal?

8.      Exactly what did the Care Inspectorate tell Witherslack in early October that made them re-consider their position?

9.      Why did the link inspector fail repeatedly to respond to queries raised by the Head of Care over the last 11 months?

10.  Why did the Care Inspectorate fail to respond in March when the school asked for its child protection policy to be endorsed?

11.  Why did the link inspector take 5 weeks to respond to a request for information about the working practices of the employee who subsequently raised a (non-CP related) concern?

12.  What communications took place between Karen Reid (Chief Executive of P&K) and her former employers (The Care Inspectorate)?

13.  Why have P&K insisted that the Head of Care and Head of School be reported to their respective professional organisations when it is clear that there has been no wrongdoing?

14.  Why has the Board failed to respond to communications from the Head of School over the past 6 weeks?

15.  Why did the Head of School discover via a parent that the administration was to commence rather than the Board of Governors?

16.  Why did the Board advise that employees should be told that they would be guaranteed their redundancy and notice pay when this now appears to be uncertain?

17.  Why has the Board failed to publically endorse the professionalism and skills of the school staff to counter the spurious claims made by the Care Inspectorate?

18.  Why did the Board claim that the school had, "shot itself in the foot again" when there have been no significant errors made by senior managers over the past 18 months (or prior to that)

19.  Why, when speaking to parents in December, did the Board state that a child protection investigation had taken place but not that the school had been cleared of any wrongdoing?

20.  Why did the Board fail to provide the child protection training requested by the Head of Care over 18 months?

21.  Why, if staffing levels were 'too low' to operate the school safely (disputed) did they not assess this as a priority in the past?

22.  Why was there no business plan in place at the school until the new Head took over in April 2018?

23.  Why did the Board allow the school to operate with such a small management team for such a prolonged period of time, if this has been identified by others as a risk?

24.  Why were senior managers not permitted to see a crucial Witherslack report prior to it being presented to the Care Inspectorate?

25.  Why was this report allowed to be presented when it contained so many errors?

26.  Why during his period of suspension did the Head of School receive no support from the Board?

27.  Why has there been no apology to staff suspended pending an investigation that has ultimately proved their innocence?

28.  What evidence is there that any harm has come to a child/young person at the school?

29.  Why was the school closed down by the Care Inspectorate and Board of Governors when it was clear that pupils felt happy, safe, and well-supported?

30.  Why did the Governors permit the Care Inspectorate, Education Scotland, and P&K officers to do so much harm to children during the final week by failing to follow national transitions guidance? (see staff account)

31.  Who was in charge of the school between August and November; Witherslack or the Board?

32.  Why, despite repeated requests, did neither organisation provide a clear communications and decison-making protocol to the Head of School?

33.  If WG did have concerns about aspects of safeguarding in the school, why did they wait until they announced that they were pulling-out of the takeover before informing the school?

34.  Why did they inform the Head of Care prior to this that they had no concerns about safeguarding?

35.  Why if there were weaknesses or gaps in some written policies did WG not make this known when they had oversight of them in August 2018

36.  Why were such alleged weaknesses not identified by the Care Inspectorate at any inspection?

37.  Why was TNS the only school in Scotland with a requirement to write a separate young adults protection policy for 16-18 year olds when this should automatically apply to all similar schools?

38.  Why did the Care Inspectorate refuse to explain what differences there would be between a child protection policy and a young adult protection policy?

39.  Why did the Care Inspectorate fail to provide clarity on the threshold levels for child protection/concerns when addressing issues with pupils affected by autism/learning disability?

40.  Why have the views of staff, pupils and parents been ignored in key decision-making?

41.  Why has there been no investigation following closure if it was stated that pupils were not safe at the school?

42.  Why is the Scottish Government refusing staff and parent demands for an independent inquiry?

43.  Why, since there have been calls for an independent inquiry have the Care Inspectorate stated that they did not have concerns for pupil safety at the school?

44.  Why is John Swinney not supporting calls for the school to be re-opened when so many pupils have still to find an educational provision?

45.  Why did PKC submit a letter of concern to the Registrar of Independent Schools in January 2018 rather than to the Board of Governors?

46.  Why did the RoIS refuse to make any judgement about the validity of the issues raised?

47.  Why did Education Scotland and the Care Inspectorate refuse to discuss the PKC complaint during their May 2018 inspections?

48.  Why did the First Minister state that the majority of pupils had alternative placements on 14.01.2019 when this was not true?

49.  Why did a PKC inclusion manager state that TNS staff were not considered, “safe to work with children”, when this was clearly untrue?

50. Why is the Care Inspectorate now stating that they did not have concerns for pupil safety at the school and had begged the board of governors to keep it open?