Southwark Council spent more than half a million pounds on agency staff at nurseries it says it can’t afford to keep running, according to new figures.
A total of £542,324 was paid out for agency workers at four council-run children’s centres since April 2011 – an average of £32,000 a month,
But the amount seems to be growing.
Almost half the sum was spent on one particular nursery – South Bermondsey Children & Parents Centre in Tenda Road
– which was given a temporary stay of execution just last month thanks to the parents’ campaign.
Why is so much is being spent on agency fees when the nurseries are under threat of closure?
The council told us it can’t afford to keep running these nurseries, and then we find out ludicrous amounts of money are being spent on agency staff and fees.
Labour councillors in charge say the nurseries need to make savings, but at the same time they’ve been signing off tens of thousands of pounds in agency costs.”
The figures were revealed in response to Freedom of Information requests.
The amount paid out in agency costs for each centre are:
Centre Name 2011-12 Expenditure Agency 2012-13 Expenditure Agency (to date) Total
Aylesbury EYC 67,649 22,970 90,618
Bishops House EYC 58,855 30,783 89,639
Camberwell Grove EYC 71,098 31,742 102,839
South Bermondsey CPC 164,383 94,845 259,228
Total Expenditure 361,984 180,340 542,324
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