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Parents concern that Northampton children’s centre ‘could lose services’ in management takeover

Governers, parents and Cllr Gareth Eales at Camrose Sure Start Children's Centre NNL-141106-092859001

Governers, parents and Cllr Gareth Eales at Camrose Sure Start Children's Centre NNL-141106-092859001

Parents and staff at a Northampton children’s centre are concerned they will lose valuable services if its management changes hands this summer.

From August this year, Camrose Sure Start Children’s Services Centre, in Tenby Road, Dallington, is expected to be taken over by national Christian charities, Spurgeons and Action for Children, as Northamptonshire County Council bids to make children’s service centres more focussed on social care.

At a meeting with staff and parents at the centre, Annie Clouston, chairman of the School Company and a Camrose governor, said: “We don’t know what changes will be made, but what is certain is that the county council focus will be on social care.

“But we provide families with so many more important services and we achieve excellent results with Ofsted and for child development within our nursery facilities.”

As well as a fully comprehensive nursery department, the centre provides families with financial advice, links to support services and a range of learning courses for parents.

Parent governor, Becky Walker, said that concerns included children’s safety if the centre became a “dumping ground” for troubled families.

One mother said: “The uncertainty is scary. I have a child here and use many of the adult services. Myself and others would be left isolated if Camrose had to stop providing these services.”

Another parent, Gillian Tysoe, said: “The support my family received from Camrose has turned my life around and I wouldn’t be where I am today if it wasn’t for the staff here.”

 

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