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Letter to the Registrar of Independent Schools

2 Atholl Gardens

Dunkeld

Perthshire

PH8 0AY

Tel: 01350 727537

Mob: 07714 472423

clcconsultancy@btinternet.com

Dear Ms Brock

The New School, Butterstone

As the former Head of the above school, I am currently representing staff, parents and pupils, in their efforts to understand why the school closed in November, 2018.

As you will appreciate, the closure at a time when school numbers were increasing rapidly, has caused a lot of confusion and considerable personal suffering for many vulnerable children and their families. It has also resulted in 51 members of staff losing their jobs, and in some cases their homes.

It is clear that the school closure was directly related to the actions of the Care Inspectorate.

In Mr Hyslop’s emailed letter to Sir Andrew Cubie on 5 November 2018, she makes a number of statements which require clarification;

1. Para 1

“The Registrar understands that, despite these allegations apparently being known to the head of school..”

Could you please clarify what “allegations” are being referenced, given that DS Lee who conducted a child protection investigation had concluded on 2 November that there were no allegations, and that the head of school was correct in his interpretation of a note written by a staff member.

2. Para 1

“It appears from the information provided to the Registrar, the school may not have engaged its child protection policy”

Please confirm that there was a child protection issue that required the ‘policy to be engaged’, and if indeed any breach of that policy has occurred. Please be specific about the ‘breach’ and which part of the policy was not adhered to. You will be aware that DS Lee had concluded that there was no child protection issue being raised by the staff member.

3. Para 2

“instigated by similar alleged failures”

Please clarify that there were previous failures in the implementation of the school’s child protection policy with specific reference to the policy in place at that time, and the incidents/issues being addressed. You will be aware that the Care Inspectorate concluded after investigation that there had been no breach of policy in concerns raised by Perth & Kinross Council in January 2018.

4. Para 4

“This latest apparent failure to notify the authorities”

Please clarify what previous failures had occurred.

Please also confirm that a concern raised about working practice would not be notifiable, and that on the date you communicated with Sir Andrew, it had already been established that there were no child protection concerns.

5. Please confirm the name and position of the professional who provided your office with the information above and the date on which this information was passed on.

I would be grateful if you could provide me with your conclusions regarding the validity of the matters raised with your office in the letter of concern lodged by Rodger Hill of Perth & Kinross Council in January 2018.

It appears from your comments in your letter of 5 November that you had indeed formed a judgement, but that this has not been passed on to me, fellow school managers, or the Board of Governors. I would be grateful for an explanation as to why we were not informed that you had upheld any aspect of that ‘complaint’ as it would have informed our operations in school.

Yours sincerely,

Bill Colley

Bill Colley