Tagged with: Big Lottery Fund Finance Olympics 70 total views, 2 views today AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to EmailEmailShare to WhatsAppWhatsAppShare to MessengerMessengerShare to MoreAddThis5 About Melanie May Melanie May is a journalist and copywriter specialising in writing both for and about the charity and marketing services sectors since 2001. She can be reached via www.thepurplepim.com. AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to EmailEmailShare to WhatsAppWhatsAppShare to MessengerMessengerShare to MoreAddThis5 Melanie May | 12 May 2016 | News “It is astonishing that the Treasury deems it acceptable to repay the Big Lottery Fund after 2020, almost eight years after the Olympics.” Government sparks more criticism with further delays to £425m Olympic repayment 69 total views, 1 views today The Labour Party and charities have spoken out against the government over its delayed repayment of the £425m it borrowed from the Big Lottery Fund to pay for the construction of the Olympic Park.The latest criticism is in response to a letter from the Treasury to the Directory of Social Change (DSC) in which Gregg Hands MP, chief secretary to the Treasury, says the National Lottery Distribution Fund ‘is expected to start receiving funds from the early 2020s’, that it is a ‘robust commitment’ and that ‘the Government maintains its position that this deal is fair’.In 2007, when the government borrowed the funds, it committed to repaying after the Olympics, and this commitment was reaffirmed by David Cameron’s government in 2010.In the wake of the Olympics, charities began working through the Big Lottery Refund campaign to have the money returned with interest.The DSC criticised the government’s delay in repaying the £425m a year after the London Olympics took place, in 2013, with a video message to the Prime Minister from DSC chief executive Debra Allcock Tyler, in which she said that the Government had ignored the pleas of over 3,000 charities who had already added their support to the Big Lottery Refund campaign.The campaign is now supported by over 3800 charities and members of the public, and last year successfully fought off a second potential diversion of Big Lottery funds. The campaign argues that instead of waiting to sell off assets from the Olympic Park, the Government can repay Lottery distributors now against revenue from the future sale of assets.Ciaran Price, policy officer at DSC, which leads the campaign, said:“It’s clear that campaign supporters and charities across the UK are being fobbed off by the government in the hope that the money will be forgotten about. It is bizarre that the government thinks a repayment sometime in the next decade, after the next election, represents a ‘robust commitment’. The extent of the Government’s attempt to shirk its responsibility is made all the more apparent by revelations of the century-long lease agreement with West Ham United which will see the club pay just £2.5m per year for a stadium that was built using money intended to help society’s most vulnerable people.”The Labour Party has demanded the immediate return of the money to the Big Lottery Fund. In a statement, Anna Turley, Shadow Minister for Civil Society said: Advertisement
Thousands of new school places are being created for children with special educational needs or those facing additional challenges in mainstream education, providing tailored support to help children thrive.Every region in the country will benefit from a new school, which include 37 special free schools and two alternative provision free schools. This will create around 3,500 additional school places, boosting choice for parents and providing specialist support and education for pupils with complex needs such as autism, severe learning difficulties or mental health conditions, and those who may have been or are at risk of being excluded from mainstream schools.It follows a commitment from the Education Secretary Damian Hinds to give the green light to all high-quality special free school bids last December when he announced an additional £250 million for local authorities for their high needs budget. This builds on an additional £100m of capital funding for local authorities to invest in additional places and better facilities for pupils with special educational needs and disability at mainstream schools, special schools and colleges, taking total investment from 2018 to 2021 to £365 million.Education Secretary Damian Hinds said: three will be in the North East, providing over 200 places in total mostly for children with social, emotional and mental health needs (SEMH); six will be in the North West, providing over 400 places including for children with SEMH, Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD), Severe Learning Difficulty (SLD) and speech, Language and Communication Needs (SLCN); five will be in Yorkshire and the Humber, providing over 500 places including for children with SEMH, ASD, SLD, Profound and Multiple Learning Difficulties (PMLD) and SLCN; one will be in the East Midlands, providing 50 places for children with SEMH; four will be in the West Midlands, providing over 400 places including for children with SEMH, ASD and Multiple Learning Difficulties (MLD); four will be in the East of England, providing over 300 places including for children with SEMH, ASD and SLCN; five will be in London, providing over 400 places including for children with SEMH, ASD and SLCN; three will be in the South East, providing over 300 places including for children with SEMH and ASD; six will be in the South West, providing 500 places including for children with SEMH, ASD, Complex Learning Difficulties (CLD) and SLCN; and two AP free schools will provide over 100 places in the West Midlands for children who have been, or are at risk of being, excluded from mainstream education. Competitions will now open in the 39 successful local authorities to find providers – including community groups, teachers, charities, existing education providers and other organisations – that will run them.Of the 37 new special free schools: We are pleased to welcome the new wave of special free schools and the extra choice they will bring to the system for children with special educational needs. We look forward to seeing them working in partnership with parents, children and local agencies to deliver the best outcomes for children. Dame Christine Lenehan, Director of the Council for Disabled Children, said: Leora Cruddas, Chief Executive of the Confederation of School Trusts, said: Parents rightly want choice of where their child goes to school and to know that the education and support they receive will ignite that spark of potential that exists in all of us, so they can go on and succeed. We want every school to be a school for children with special educational needs and disabilities. That’s why we are investing significant funding into Special Education Needs units attached to mainstream schools and in additional support so children with education, health and care plans can access mainstream education. But we recognise some children require more specialist support. These new special free schools and alternative provision schools will make sure that more complex needs can be provided to help support every child to have a quality education. These additional school places will enable children with special needs and those facing difficulties to have access to high quality education provision. Over the past week, there has been much debate in the media about children and young people whose social, emotional and behavioural needs make them vulnerable. Today’s announcement of a range of specialist provision in every region of the country is hugely welcome. The 39 new free schools will offer an extra 3,459 extra places for pupils. The schools add to the 34 special and 42 AP free schools already open, and come on top of a further 54 special and 12 AP free schools approved in a previous application rounds, which will open in future. The total number of special free schools will come to 125 upon completion.