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Wednesday, 3 August 2011

Manor Green School's Respite Unit To Close Due To Funding Withdrawal

A multi-million pound respite care unit has announced it will close its doors indefinitely after opening less than a year ago.

Manor Green Residence, which provides respite care for children with severe learning disabilities, will shut on Friday, July 22.

A letter sent to parents and staff members on Monday from Manor Green School headteacher Ania Hildrey said the unit will close 'as a result of withdrawal of funding for the provision by two of the three local authorities funding the service.'

The letter also states that the school in Elizabeth Hawkes Way, Cox Green, is in talks with the Royal Borough about the 'possibility of a future service provision'.

"But what is clear is that there will be no service provision for the autumn term and highly unlikely for the spring term," she adds.

Staff at the unit, which is the only one of its kind in the borough, have been told there is a 'high risk' of compulsory redundancies and to look for other positions within the school or borough.

The 24-bed respite unit, which is managed by Manor Green School, provides short-term overnight accommodation for children with learning disabilities. It is used to teach pupils how to live independently.

It forms part of the £26 million specialist school which replaced Holyport Manor last September as a result of a 10 year campaign.

An investigation into the standards of care at the unit is still ongoing. The Royal Borough suddenly closed the unit in February following the suspension of three staff members. It was re-opened in March under an interim management team.

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