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Sefton Council agrees to consider closure procedure for St Teresa’s Catholic Infant & Nursery School

In line with a request from the school’s Governing Body, Sefton Council is starting procedures to propose the closure of St.Teresa’s Catholic Infant and Nursery School in Southport.

After being advised by the Governing Body that they have exhausted all options available to increase pupil numbers, the Local Authority has agreed to consider instigating the procedure for closing the school.

To avoid any speculation or rumour, the school’s headteacher has written to all pupils’ families and has held a meeting with all staff. An announcement will also be made to parishioners at St Teresa’s R C Church on Sunday.

The letter tells parents that Sefton Council will progress the matter at the next Cabinet meeting, which will be held on Thursday 4th November.

Calendar of Council meetings.

Reminder: Taxi driver licence auto-renewals have now ended

The auto-renewal period for all taxi driver’s licences has now come to an end.

All taxi licence holders that are due for renewal will be invited into Bootle One Stop Shop for an appointment.

Letters will be sent out confirming the date and the time of your appointment, it will also include detailed information about the evidence that will be required to be submitted to renew your licence.

Failure to attend your appointment or to provide all the necessary information will result in your licence being lapsed. 

There is no need to contact the licensing team to enquire about your appointment, they will contact you when you are due for renewal.

To find out more read through the taxi licencing page of the Council website: https://www.sefton.gov.uk/business/licensing-registration/taxi-licensing/

Liverpool City Region leaders launch new £8.1m scheme to support Covid-hit businesses

Having successfully distributed more than £44m in emergency funding to more than 4,000 businesses across the city region, the Liverpool City Region has secured a further £8.1m to support local businesses.

The original £44m from the government’s Additional Restrictions Grant scheme was secured by Metro Mayor Steve Rotheram, following negotiations with government when the city region was first put into Tier Three restrictions in October 2020.

Funds to be shared under ‘Trading On Scheme’

This further £8.1m in funding – to be known as the Trading On Scheme – will be allocated to the city region’s six local authorities, proportionate to population. This latest support scheme will specifically support small or medium-sized businesses, with between 10 and 249 employees.

This further £8.1m in funding – to be known as the Trading On Scheme – will be allocated to the city region’s six local authorities, proportionate to population. This latest support scheme will specifically support small or medium-sized businesses, with between 10 and 249 employees.

Businesses across Sefton will benefit from the £1.4million allocation for the local authority area. 

The scheme will open for applications at 10am on Monday 25th October and will close at 5pm on Friday 12th November 2021.

In a joint statement, Liverpool City Region Metro Mayor Steve Rotheram, Cllr Mike Wharton, Leader, Halton Borough Council, Cllr Graham Morgan, Leader, Knowsley Borough Council, Joanne Anderson, Mayor of Liverpool, Cllr Ian Maher, Leader, Sefton Borough Council, Cllr David Baines, Leader, St. Helens Borough Council and Cllr Janette Williamson, Leader, Wirral Borough Council said:

“Throughout the past 18 months, we have worked together to protect our region from the biggest challenge it has faced since the war. That collaboration, creativity and hard work resulted in millions of pounds of support that helped sustain thousands of businesses in all parts of our region through the worst of the pandemic.

“More than £44m was distributed to more than 4,000 businesses, saving many more thousands of jobs and livelihoods in the process. We start our recovery from a much stronger position as a result.

“That recovery is already well underway and received a massive boost in May, with the launch of Mayor Steve Rotheram’s £150m Covid Recovery Fund, which has allowed our region to get a headstart on the rest of the country.

“Today, we’re launching another £8.1m of funding for SMEs, who make up a massive chunk of the local economy. Together, we are making sure that the Liverpool City Region has the fastest and strongest recovery possible, with no one left behind.”

Grants to be administered by each local authority

The government requires each council to exercise its local knowledge and judgment in devising a grant scheme that aligns best with the particular economic characteristics of its area by funding those businesses that have been severely impacted by Covid-19. Because of this and the limited amount of funding available, the amounts of grant funding for individual businesses will vary across different local authority areas.

Sefton based businesses can find guidance and further details about the application process on the Sefton Council website.

The application form will go live on the website at 10am on Monday 25th October.

How Sefton Council has supported its local businesses since the start of the pandemic

Sefton Council has administered 23,000 grant payments through local, regional and national financial support packages and schemes totalling £97.7 million in payments to businesses right across the Borough – from taxi drivers to childminders to pub landlords.

A total of £41.8 million in Business Rates retail discounts were awarded in 2020/21 with a further £22.5 million awarded in 2021/22.

 

To administer this latest grant scheme, Sefton Council is utilising its Business Rates, InvestSefton, Tourism and Environmental Health business relationships to contact as many eligible businesses as is possible.

Anyone who has not been contacted can still check their eligibility and submit an application before the closing date of 5pm Friday 12th November 2021.

Dwayne Johnson, Sefton Council’s CEO, shares message for Black History Month 2021

Black History Month, which runs throughout October, is an opportunity to celebrate the incredible history and contributions of our Black and ethnically diverse communities. I am really proud of the fantastic work that is going on across our Borough to promote equality, inclusion and empowerment within the Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic community.

I want to reiterate that as a Council we are completely committed to driving forward the race equality agenda, as an employer, service provider and as a partner both locally and regionally.

I would also like to take this opportunity to give an update about some of the strategies and projects we are currently involved in that will enable us to tackle race inequalities.

Sefton has a Corporate Equalities Group made up of representatives from across the organisation. The Group, which is chaired by a member of our Senior Leadership team, supports the Council in making sure equality and diversity is at the top of our agenda, internally and externally.

In addition to this, Sefton has established its own Black and Ethnically Diverse Staff Group. As well as providing a confidential space where members can share experiences, this Group plays a vital role in helping the Council to identify and address issues relating to race inequality.

Feeding back into Sefton’s Corporate Equalities Group, members offer solutions and recommendations about the issues that affect them and the organisation. This includes improving employee progression and empowerment through training and development opportunities, as well as consulting in new or existing policies, practices, procedures and strategies in areas such as Employment and Human Resources.

With the involvement of our Black and Ethnically Diverse Staff Group, Sefton is currently developing a ‘Race Equality Declaration of Intent’, which cements our commitment to ensure we promote equality within our organisation and across the borough. The Declaration outlines areas of focus including employment, retention and development to leadership within the Council. It also sets priorities, targets and timescales highlighting how we will monitor progress and achieve the actions agreed.

We are proud to be part of a new programme led by the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority, which brings together leaders from Merseyside Councils, community organisations, businesses and the public sector, to tackle race inequality.

As part of our involvement, Sefton’s Learning and Development team are playing an active role in the establishment of a £3.2 million Liverpool City Region Race Equality Hub.

One of the first of its kind in the country, the Hub, will focus on training, employment and support for people from Black, Asian, and Minority Ethnic backgrounds. It will target employment inequalities and remove barriers in the labour market.

As part of the Hub’s development Sefton is currently in the planning stages of a project which will see the roll-out of a programme of race equality training to the 22,000 people employed by the Combined Authority and all staff at the six Local Authorities.

As well as this, our Learning and Development team continue to offer a comprehensive mandatory Equality and Diversity training programme to all staff at Sefton. This includes Equality and Diversity Awareness, Equality and Diversity for Managers as well as Unconscious Bias.

This programme of work is so important in tackling racial injustice and inequality across the City Region. There is still a lot of work to be done locally and nationally but working together with our partners across the whole City Region, we will be committed to being proactive in our fight to overcome racial discrimination.

Hugh Baird College makes commitment to support students and staff with their mental health and wellbeing

Hugh Baird College has reaffirmed its commitment to staff and students by signing up to a national mental health and wellbeing charter – created by the Association of Colleges (AoC) in conjunction with mental health experts.

Commitments

The 11-point document includes commitments to:

  • Promoting equality of opportunity and challenging mental health stigma
  • Providing appropriate mental health training for staff
  • Providing targeted individual mental health support where appropriate

Colleges across England teach and train 2.2 million people each year – including 685,000 young people. Every year, 1 in 10 young people experience a mental health problem and 1 in 5 young people aged 16-24 experience a common mental illness such as anxiety or depression at any one time. Add to these facts, 75% of adults with a diagnosable mental health problem experience their first symptoms before the age of 24 means Hugh Baird College plays a vital role in supporting the mental health and wellbeing of its students and staff.

Wellbeing

Rachael Hennigan, Principal at Hugh Baird College, said: “The mental wellbeing of our students and staff is an absolute priority for Hugh Baird College. Every learner and staff member deserves to work, study and train in an environment that supports them to be healthy, happy and secure. That is why we are proud to join the AoC Mental Health and Wellbeing Charter.”

“Whilst the College has comprehensive and effective support systems in place for those experiencing mental wellbeing challenges, we are always keen to do more. This charter provides a clear direction of travel for the College as we continue to work together to support the health and wellbeing of our students and staff.”

World-class

Richard Caulfield, Mental Health Lead at the Association of Colleges, said: “Every single day colleges like Hugh Baird College provide a world-class education and transform the lives of millions of people. This includes providing support for both staff and student wellbeing at the right time, in the right place. This charter gives colleges the chance to publicly state their commitment to the mental health agenda.”

Find out more about Hugh Baird College.

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