- Councillors surgery- Chruch councillors will be holding their regular monthly surgery on Saturday 4th Febraury from 10.30am at Whitley cafe.
- Childrens centre consultation- Due to severe Government budget cuts the Council is having to consult on the future of children’s centres across the town. To have your say come to South Reading Youth and community centre on Thursday 16th February at 10am-12pm
- Full Council meeting- the public meeting of Readings Counciilors including Church Ward Councillors takes place on February 21st at 6.30pm at the Civic centre.
- Reading Banner delivery- The Labour party Reading wide Banner newsletter will be delivered to residents at the end of the month. This edition will focus on the savage Governemnt cuts the Council is facing.
Monthly Archives: January 2017
Reading Council is facing unfair and unprecedented cuts in its budget in the next few years. The revenue support grant that funds Councils from central Government is to be cut by 92% over the next 4 years. This leaves the Council over £5m worse off than expected, and with £100m slashed from the budget from 2011-2020, this is around a third of the Council’s overall budget. Meanwhile inflation has raised Council costs, National insurance contributions have gone up and demand for many statutory services has risen.
Reading’s Labour Council has continued to strive to improve the lives of residents despite these cuts. A School expansion programme has provided desperately needed new school places, the award winning Council owned and run Reading buses continue to provide low cost transport and the Council will soon be building the first new Council houses in years to add much needed housing to the town.
But these things are becoming increasingly difficult to do. Services the Council has to legally provide such as schools, adult social care and refuse collection take up around ¾ of the Councils budget. The lower the Government funding to Council’s goes, the less money we have for things we’d like to provide for residents such as parks, leisure and pot holes. Reading’s two MP’s consistently vote for these cuts, it’s about time they stood up for Reading residents and not their own parties interests.
Schools in Reading are improving, but this progress is now at risk with big cuts in central government grants about to be handed down by the Tory Government. The number of GCSE passes at Grade A*-C, including English and Maths has risen, Reading retains its top spot in the national table of ‘A’ Level achievement and Reading’s primary school children are performing above the national average.
There is significant improvement in outcomes for students at Key Stage 2 (Primary), Key stage 4 (GCSE) and Key Stage 5 (A Level) in 2016. In particular: 64.1% of students achieved A*-C in both English and Mathematics, the Attainment 8 progress figures ranks Reading at 39th out of 152 Local Authorities and Reading’s key stage 2 results ranks us at 50th out of 152 local authorities compared to 103rd last year.
But these improvements are at risk, with the Local Government Association warning that the Tory Government intend to cut the £450 million budget covering school improvement work to just £50 million later this year. In addition, schools are facing massive cuts to their budgets with some schools in Reading facing a cut of up to £920 per pupil, which could fund 18 teachers. Reading’s MPs consistently vote for these cuts, they must now stand up for Reading’s schools and demand that no school in Reading faces a cut to its funding.
The popular South Reading calendar has started to drop through letter boxes in Church Ward. The calendar has lots of local events and listings in one place from many local organisations. It will be delivered to over 4000 homes and updated for the second half of the year.
Two notice boards that have been unused for the past few years have recently been brought back into use after pressure from Councillors. The disused notice boards both off of Linden Road have been revamped thanks to Affinity housing and Reading Council and will now hold relevant local information to help keep residents informed. If you would like any information to be displayed please contact Ashley to let him know.