I will be answering two questions at this weeks Council meeting on School capacity and school exclusions. Both answers can be read below:
Monthly Archives: February 2020
Waiting restrictions: Shinfield Road has become a problem area for parking in recent months and has now been replaced on the waiting restrictions review list. This will be heard at March’s transport committee meeting where if passed, Council officers will undertake further investigations into what actions we can take.
Speeding: on the same agenda at the March transport meeting as the above is potential speeding restrictions on Northcourt Avenue and the surrounding roads. If passed the same process of further investigation by the Council will take place.
Road resurfacing: the Council will soon put into place the biggest investment into repairing our roads ever. This includes many roads in Church Ward to be repaired in the next 3 years. Roads in most need will be prioritised and the full list of roads will be available soon.
Local CIL spending: a small pot of money is available to spend on local projects every couple of years from Community Infrastructure Levy payments. At the end of this year we expect the crossing to Ridgeway School on Whitley Wood Road and on Northumberland Avenue by Reading Girls School to be completed. The next round of funding will be discussed soon and I’m happy to hear from residents. Currently improvements to Shinfield Rec park off Linden Road and improving the Christchurch Road shops area are high on the priority list.
Councillor’s advice surgery: Church Ward Councillors will be available to discuss any issues with residents on Saturday 7th March at 10.30am-12pm at Ridgeway School on Hillbrow.
Reading Families Forum Fun day: RFF will be holding an SEND information and fun day event at South Reading Leisure centre on Saturday 7th March from 2.30pm-5pm.
Full Council meeting: Church Ward Councillors will be in attendance at the Full Council meeting on Tuesday 24th at 6.30pm at the Civic Centre where the Council’s budget for next year will be discussed.
Policy Committee meeting: Ashley will be present in his role as Lead member for education on Monday 9th at 6.30pm at the Civic Centre.
Labour party Preston model meeting: Martyn Rawlinson the co-founder of the Preston community wealth building model will be in Reading to discuss how this was achieved on Thursday 12th (venue the).
Whitley logo judging: The winners of the Shift youth and community Whitley logo competition will be announced after judges including Ashley decide on the winner on Monday 23rd March.
Reading University community forum: Church Ward Cllrs will be in attendance to discuss how Reading University can work more closely with the local community on Thursday 26th at 6.30pm.
ROC conversation Whitley: community engagement charity ROC will be at John Madejski Academy on Monday 30th from 7-9pm to discuss ways local organisations can work together for the good of the local community.
Canvassing: Councillors and activists will be out speaking to residents on Saturday 7th on Holberton Road and Exwick Square (am), Thursday 19th on Brybur Close and Winton Road (later afternoon), and on Saturday 21st on Whitley Wood Road (am).
At tomorrow’s policy committee meeting I will be asked a question about teacher starting salaries. My response is below:
A School Street is a road outside a school with a temporary restriction on motorised traffic at school drop-off and pick-up times. The restriction applies to school traffic and through traffic. The result is a safer, healthier and pleasant environment for everyone.
School Street schemes offer a proactive solution for school communities to tackle air pollution, poor health and road danger reduction. A School Street scheme will encourage a healthier lifestyle and active travel to school for families and lead to a better environment for everyone.
A traffic management order is applied to a street around a school, temporarily restricting access to motorised vehicles. That street will in, effect, become a pedestrian and cycle only zone. Times for the restrictions are determined in agreement with the school. These can be for between 30-45 minutes and only on weekdays and term times.
At a recent Clean Air Safer Transport forum meeting the issue of School Streets was discussed and pilot schools have been sought to test the scheme. Two of our local schools in Whitley have expressed an interest in becoming an area this could be implemented. Discussions with these schools will continue and our ambition to introduce this scheme is also clear in the new transport plan.
Reading’s John Madejski Academy has been praised by Ofsted in a recently published inspection report.
Following a visit in January, Ofsted’s inspectors noted that “the academy is improving” and identified many areas of progress at the secondary school.
Camilla Thornalley, principal at John Madejski Academy, said: “There has been no better time for young people at JMA. We are undergoing a rapid rate of growth and improvement, which is underscored by feedback we are receiving from pupils, parents, and the wider community.”
Among the ongoing improvements highlighted by Ofsted was the relationship between staff and students, with the report reading: “pupils feel safe and well supported”. It also states that: “pupils and staff get along well together and there is a friendly feeling to the school.”
John Madejski Academy offers both girls’ and boys’ elite sports performance programmes in conjunction with Reading Rockets basketball and Reading Football Club. These initiatives are commended in the report, which reads: “Pupils on elite sports programmes appreciate the opportunity they have to develop into high-level athletes.”
The programmes also received support from a parent, who is quoted in the report as saying: “my child’s confidence has grown and both his academic and sports progress shows.”
The report marks Ofsted’s first visit to John Madejski Academy since the school joined The White Horse Federation multi-academy trust in February 2018.