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Ministry says new school heads will be named when paperwork is signed

The new principals at Clearwater and Dellwood Middle Schools are “just completing the necessary paperwork” and will be announced before the start of the school year.

The Ministry of Education has confirmed that the new principals will be named once they have signed off on paperwork to confirm their acceptance.

It comes after

The Royal Gazette yesterday reported that parents, teachers and students at the two middle schools were still in the dark just a week before the start of term.

The Ministry of Education said it had “no comment” to make when asked a series of questions by

The Royal Gazette reporter.

But when the story was printed on the front page, Education Permanent Secretary Warren Jones issued a statement saying: “There is a process to be followed.”

Shadow Education Minister Grant Gibbons was quoted in yesterday’s story suggesting a lack of accountability on the part of the Ministry. This newspaper found out about the situation from other sources and contacted Dr Gibbons for his comments.

Mr Jones said in his statement: “Dr Gibbons is well aware that it is not the Ministry of Education that appoints principals to schools and that there is a process to be followed. “As opposed to adding to the concern of parents by making uninformed comments in the press, Dr Gibbons could have called the Ministry himself to seek a response to his concern.

“If he had done so, he would have been advised that we have followed all processes and just await sign-off on documentation to confirm their acceptance and that this will be in-hand prior to the opening of school.

“As correctly noted in the story, the posts were advertised in June, interviews conducted and recommendations made to the Public Service Commission.

“However, naming these individuals can only occur once they have officially accepted the posts and completed the necessary paperwork.”

Dr Gibbons said he stood by his statement. He said: “I am well aware of the processes involved in appointing civil servants, having spent a number of years closely involved with the Government myself. As a result, I know exactly who is accountable if appointments are not made in a timely fashion.

“The Ministry of Education knows the process, knows the lead-time, and knows exactly what to do and when to do it in order to get a satisfactory result.

“In this case, the appointments are late, so the Ministry of Education, which has the responsibility for shepherding these appointments through the system, has not done what it should have done.

“Consequently appropriate preparations by these principals for the start of the school year are not where they should be at this late stage and I can appreciate why parents would have concerns”.

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Published August 26, 2011 at 10:21 am (Updated August 26, 2011 at 10:21 am)

Ministry says new school heads will be named when paperwork is signed

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