Positive reports for Seaview & Tealing Primary Schools

At last week’s Children & Learning Committee, Monifieth & Sidlaw Councillor Ben Lawrie welcomed positive reports for Seaview Primary School, Tealing Primary School and their respective nursery classes following inspections from Education Scotland.

Speaking at Committee, Councillor Lawrie said:

“I attended Seaview Primary School in my youth and it was a fantastic time for me which set me up for life. I remember it being a great learning environment with some really amazing staff who were very patient with my classroom antics.
I left Seaview 12 years ago but it’s very heartening to see those same standards being upheld today and knowing that the pupils there are in just as good hands now as I was all that time ago.

It’s also good to read the very positive comments about the children, the staff and the Headteacher of Tealing Primary School and their Nursery class. Whilst some areas of improvement have been outlined for both schools, I have full confidence that this feedback will be taken on board and that these schools are only going to get better.”

Information about the Seaview Primary School & Nursery Class inspection can be found here.

Information about the Tealing Primary School & Nursery Class inspection can be found here.

Cllr Lawrie has welcomed positive reports for local Primary Schools

Year of Young People 2018: Reflections

Over the years I’ve heard people say negative things about young people.

They cause trouble.

They’re on their phones too much.

That they’re too soft, or easily offended.

So it was a refreshing change of tone when as a nation we decided that 2018 was the year that we were going to put young people on the pedestal.

To celebrate their achievements, their contributions to our communities & the potential they each have in transforming our society.

As part of the Year of Young People, Angus Council developed a Youth Engagement Strategy and one of the impressive things about this strategy is that it was co-designed with young people. One important element of democracy is that change happens with people, not to them so it’s absolutely common sense that young people are involved in designing a strategy for engaging with young people.

I was also really impressed by the ‘Power of Youth’ Participatory Budgeting event (funded by the European Interreg Programme). This event had different projects put forward and voted on by young people with the winning projects receiving funding. This put power in to the hands of young people and let them decide what their own priorities are.

We did a lot of good things for the Year of Young People but I’m keen to keep the ball rolling. On top of the legacy work that the Council has planned there are things that us elected members can be doing to make sure our young people are represented.

We have local Members of Scottish Youth Parliament (or MSYPs) and I’ve had frequent contact with them where they’ve told me about the campaigns they’re involved in and where we’ve worked together on common goals.

Last year, by collaborating with our MSYPs, the Monifieth & Sidlaw Councillors managed to organise surgeries in Monifieth High School. This was a great opportunity to talk to local young people and find out what matters to them, it was certainly worth doing.

Young people are never short of ideas and hopefully with the Year of Young People, we’ve started something that won’t end any time soon.

You can find more information on Angus Council’s Year of Young People Projects here.

Young people receiving their Saltire Awards at ‘The Power of Youth’ event.

Cllr Ben Lawrie Welcomes Interreg Funding for Angus Health & Social Care

The Angus Council Scrutiny & Audit Committee met this morning in Forfar.

Commenting on the Angus Integration Joint Board Annual and Strategic Performance Report at this mornings Scrutiny & Audit Committee, Cllr Ben Lawrie said:

“I noticed that the [Angus Health & Social Care] Partnership accessed funding through the Interreg programme, allowing them to work with European Partners on digital innovation and improving service design.

This is a really good example of how the Interreg programme benefits Angus and I hope that the UK Government will continue participation in the programme after Brexit so we can continue to reap these benefits.

I’m also heartened to see all the work that’s being done around substance misuse.

I see there’s been some collaboration with the Tayside Council on Alcohol who do a lot of outstanding work around drugs and alcohol abuse so it’s good to see their involvement.

Also, the report lists a lot of training which has been overseen by the Alcohol & Drugs Partnership. I think there’s a good focus here on education, harm reduction and preventing deaths and this is something I welcome.”

Angus IJB Chief Officer Vicky Irons responded to Cllr Lawrie’s comments on the Interreg programme saying:

“We’ve had huge benefit from the Interreg project… We’ve learned so much from that partnership that will benefit us in the future.”

Monifieth Recycling Centre Closure Put on Hold

This afternoon, the newly-formed Angus Administration passed a motion which “defers implementation of the closures and changes to hours for the recycling centres” in Angus.

A member/officer group will be established to review the proposed changes to opening hours with the aim of bringing forward a report on the conclusions of this review in September.

The motion was proposed by leader of the council Bob Myles and seconded by Councillor for Monifieth & Sidlaw, Ben Lawrie.

Speaking at the meeting of the council this afternoon, Cllr Lawrie said:

“It’s incumbent upon all of us to foster a culture of recycling.

As well as our responsibility as individuals to do our bit, there is also a responsibility at all levels of government, whether it’s national, international, or in our case, local.

To promote this culture of recycling, we need to make recycling as easy as possible for as many people as possible rather than creating extra barriers.

With that in mind I’m pleased that this motion has been put forward. Whilst protecting our environment becomes ever more important, it may not be prudent to reduce the opening hours of recycling centres across Angus.”

I’m particularly pleased that the motion puts on hold the impending closure of the Monifieth Recycling Centre.

Monifieth residents do not want to lose the centre and as an environmentalist I share that sentiment.

Whilst the motion can’t guarantee the long-term future of the recycling centre, I’m convinced that this is the best first step. I hope that fellow members will join me in supporting this motion so that Angus can play its full role in protecting our environment.”