Schools improvement service facing £160,000 budget gap
THE school improvement service in South Wales is facing a budget gap of more than £160,000 next year.
The Central South Consortium Joint Education Service has identified that it needs to save £166,000 in 2019/20.
The service, which represents Bridgend, Cardiff, Merthyr Tydfil, Rhondda Cynon Taf and the Vale of Glamorgan has already approved £100,000 worth of savings from its total saving requirement of £266,000.
It will will need to find £195,000 in savings just to address the 5% reduction in contributions from the five councils which form part of the region.
The teacher’s pay award will cost the consortium £36,000, other factors such as the removal of the business support vacancy factor will cost £30,000 and non-pay factors such as licenses and employer and public liability insurance will cost £5,000.
The consortium has agreed to look at several ways in which to address the remaining £166,000 budget gap.
One is to release two vacant positions (business support officer and data analyst officer) which should save £62,000.
Eligible salaries will be covered by the Regional Consortia School Improvement Grant saving £66,000 and senior challenge adviser responsibilities will also be charged to a grant saving £31,000.
Combined with savings of £7,000 in other areas, the consortium hopes this will address the budget gap still to be filled.
Chief executives, directors of education and the managing director say they believe these proposals can be delivered without impacting on the direct school improvement activities provided by the consortium.
But they say the scale of potential budget savings required over the medium term will not be fully deliverable from back-office areas or through efficiency savings and will mean the CSC needs to propose changes to its school improvement model.
There is set to be an independent review of the future shape and activities of Central South Consortium.
These are the amounts that each council will contribute to the consortium this year and how much they are reducing from last year...
■■Bridgend: £570,792 a reduction of £35,106
■■Cardiff: £1,343,202 a reduction of £70,296
■■Merthyr Tydfil: £234,781 a reduction of £11,818 ■■Rhondda Cynon Taf: £1,014,204 a reduction of £51,903 ■■Vale of Glamorgan: £547,874 a reduction of 26,185