Although control of Anglesey Council is slowly being returned to elected councillors following a takeover by Welsh Government Commissioners, a new team has been appointed to 'challenge and support' the way the county's schools are run.
The Education Minister, Leighton Andrews says he's taking action following a highly critical report from Estyn, the schools inspectorate. It found multiple problems including sub-standard performance by pupils at all key stages and unacceptably low attendance rates in secondary schools.
Anglesey is of course already run by Welsh Government Commissioners who were appointed in March 2011 to address fundamental failures of corporate leadership and governance. The role and remit of these Commissioners is purely at that corporate level. They were not appointed to recover education or any other specific service. Recovery in education needs to go hand in hand with the corporate recovery which the Commissioners are leading. On 25 September the Minister for Local Government and Communities announced that he intends to start bringing his intervention to an end.
– Education Minister Leighton Andrews AM
However this does not detract from the intervention I intend to put in place in relation to the local authority’s education functions. With the full support of the Minister for Local Government and Communities, I am announcing today the establishment of a Recovery Board to sustain and advise the Welsh Government Commissioners and to challenge and support the Council’s officers and members in respect of Anglesey’s education services. The Commissioners will be able to step in directly if the Council is not taking adequate, or prompt action to put things right.