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Council to consider new regional relationship for school improvement

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CARMARTHENSHIRE County Council’s Executive Board will meet next week to discuss the authority’s future as part of the regional school improvement consortium ERW (Educational Regional Workforce).

The council, along with authorities in Ceredigion, Neath Port Talbot, Pembrokeshire, Powys and Swansea, has been a part of the consortium since it was established in 2014.

However, the Executive Board could decide to withdraw from the consortium to support a new arrangement for school improvement services based on the footprint of the Swansea Bay Region.

Neath Port Talbot Council has already served notice to withdraw.

Cllr Emlyn Dole, Leader of Carmarthenshire County Council, has recognised the many positive achievements of the consortium in recent years, but said it was right to discuss what was best for Carmarthenshire going forward.

“ERW has achieved many positive things, however it is fair to say that it has also navigated through some difficult times with changes in political and managerial leadership,” he said. “The large geographical area of the ERW footprint has added to these challenges.

“We truly value working with our neighbours, but it is timely to review the regional arrangements and potentially look to realign with other partnerships across the Swansea Bay City Region which could have bigger benefits for Carmarthenshire’s children and young people.”

The Executive Board will meet on March 16 (2020) to review the authority’s position, but has promised to work with partners to ensure a seamless and robust transition should members decide to withdraw.

Cllr Glynog Davies, the council’s Executive Board Member for education and children’s services, added: “We are committed to working in partnership and across local authority boundaries where this delivers benefits for our communities.

“It’s right to acknowledge the significant progress of ERW over the last 12 months, in terms of staffing and organisation, but we must be confident that we are providing the very best support for our schools and it’s timely to look at how this can best be achieved.”

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Community

Youth Support Service recognised

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CARMARTHENSHIRE COUNTY COUNCIL YOUTH SUPPORT SERVICE has been awarded the National Participation Charter for Children and Young People.

The service which supports young people aged 8-25 across Carmarthenshire reach their full personal, social and educational potential was given the accreditation for its commitment to the participation standards.

The National Children and Young People’s Participation Standards are a tool to help measure the process of children and young people’s participation in the work undertaken by a service supporting young people. And that they are working in line with the National Participation Standards which are underpinned by the Well-being of Future Generations (Wales) Act 2015.

The service also provides support and opportunities to access employment, education or training for ages 16-25.

The council’s director of education and children services, Gareth Morgans, said: “This is an essential and exciting part of our journey as a service in realising our vision of being a service that provides a robust range of support from open access to specialised support, enabling children, young people and young adults from 8-25 years of age to access what they need, when and where they need it so that they can reach their full personal, social and educational potential.

“The voice of children and young people is important to us as a service and being awarded the Charter demonstrates our strong commitment to children and young people’s participation within our work in Carmarthenshire.

“The Charter will allow us to use the National Participation Standards as a tool to measure the process of the participation of children and young people in decision making processes within our local authority. It will also help us to identify current areas of good practice, as well as areas for development.”

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Community

Carmarthenshire County Council Chair’s charity swim

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THE CHAIR of Carmarthenshire County Council has fulfilled his promise to do a seaside swim to raise money for his two charities.

Cllr Ieuan Davies had vowed to take part in the traditional Walrus Dip at Cefn Sidan beach on Boxing Day, but the event was cancelled due to Covid restrictions.

Instead, Cllr Davies took to the waves at Pendine beach during a chilly Easter weekend.

Cllr Davies is fundraising for two charities close to his heart, Prostate Cancer and St Peter’s Church in Llanybydder. 

As well as the swim, he is also undertaking a sponsored walk and has so far walked over 60 miles.

“It has been a difficult year for so many people and I have deeply regretted being unable to undertake the usual duties of Chair, meeting as many Carmarthenshire residents and groups as possible over the year.  I am so pleased to have been able to do a seaside swim which is an important date in the civic calendar,” said Cllr Davies.

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Community

Easter Cheer at the Food Hub

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RED DOT FINANCIAL PLANNING is bringing seasonal cheer to the recipients of food parcels from the Llandeilo Food Hub.

Stephanie Jones and Dyfed Lloyd-Jones brought bags full of Easter Chocolates to be given to the families currently looked after by the Food Hub.

“Our office is just around the corner and we’ve been meaning to contribute to the community for a while,” said Stephanie. “A recent Facebook post about the food hub reminded me. Seeing the great set up we know we will be back.”

Volunteers Urszula Haines and Christoph Fischer received the donation on behalf of the Food Hub.

“It’s great that the families get to enjoy that bit of seasonal luxury and we can’t thank our donors enough,” said Urszula.

Donations for the Food Hub can be dropped off at the Llandeilo Rugby Club every day between 2 and 4 pm. For deliveries out of hours contact LlandeiloCovid19@mail.com

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