A CAMPAIGN group will take BCP Council to the High Court if it does not release details of its Safety Valve plan it has submitted to the government, it says.

The campaign group BCP Alliance for Children and Schools instructed Sinclairslaw to write to the council demanding details of its proposals sent to the Department for Education.

This follows a unanimous vote from councillors for them to debate and vote on any Safety Valve plan, before it is put in place.

The letter to the council set out the context of its questions, including the background to the authority’s moves towards joining the Safety Valve programme.

Read more on the Safety Valve programme:

However, it questioned why information on this process has been withheld from the public.

The letter said the council had taken steps to ‘prevent interested parties from fully participating in the debate in respect of this strategy’.

“The critical document which should have been put before the LA [local authority] but which has never come into the public domain is the BCP’s DSG deficit management plan,” it said.

The letter suggests that by not putting these plans in the public domain, the authority has not complied with the law.

The letter has asked for a response from the authority within seven days from its submission on March 7.

It demanded to know the date upon which the council submitted its Safety Valve plan, who made this decision, and to release the deficit management plan along with any further documents submitted to government, along with what date this plan was approved by a council.

If this was not approved by a council, the letter asks the authority to explain its reasoning and the process it followed to authorise the submission.

If the information is not received within the set timeframe, the letter puts the authority on notice that it intends to apply to the High Court for a judicial review.

It will ask for a declaration that the council ‘is acting and intends to act unlawfully’ along with an order to quash the decision to refuse disclosure of the deficit management plan.

It concluded: “Our client has children with SEN and plainly they have an interest in the outcome of these proceedings and we sincerely hope common-sense will prevail to enable transparent disclosure and a full and proper explanation to be given to the public in relation to the LA’s conduct.”

The full letter can be found on the BCPACS website.