News round-up 11/10: Hunt - years until care reform
Your daily media round up of all the key stories affecting local government
Health secretary Jeremy Hunt has “dashed hopes of any early reform of the social care funding system”, the Guardian reports. It says the minister told a fringe meeting at the Conservative party conference that the £1.7bn annual cost of the Dilnot commission’s proposals would have to be cut. Mr Hunt also said it might take years to get “the right solution” to the social care funding crisis, the newspaper reports.
In response, David Rogers (Lib Dem), chair of the LGA’s community wellbeing board, said: “All too soon we are going to be faced with a funding crisis that we are no longer going to be able to tackle. The challenge of reforming adults social care is set to fall off a cliff edge and politicians need to act now or risk severely impacting on the services councils can provide for generations to come.”
Six arrests have been made over allegations that elderly residents were mistreated at a care home near Lancaster, the Daily Telegraph reports. It says five nurses and a former matron have been arrested after a police investigation at Hillcroft nursing home in Slyne-with-Hest, Lancashire.
Conservative Party Conference
Prime minister David Cameron singled out welfare, education and attacking Labour’s plans for borrowing as the battle lines for the next election, during his speech to the Conservative Party conference yesterday, reports the Guardian. In response to Labour’s claim to the ‘One Nation’ mantle, Mr Cameron claimed the Conservatives were not the party of the better off, but the “want to be better off”. However, the paper claimed Mr Cameron’s central call for an “aspiration nation” ignored underlying social issues.
The Daily Telegraph writes that Mr Cameron sought to address privilege in his own background, saying he wanted everyone to experience the type of upbringing he had.
Meanwhile, the Independent described Mr Cameron’s speech as “statesmanlike, resolute and human”, but also warned the Prime Minister was “beset by perils”.
The New Schools Network, which works with aspiring free schools to help meet standards, has claimed that finding sites is proving a major stumbling block. The charity is working with 30 potential schools according to a list seen by the Times.
Meanwhile, 450,000 pupils will re-sit their GCSE English exams, following an outcry over marking, the Guardian reports. More than one in fourteen pupils will re-sit their exams in November, with students in England, Wales and Northern Ireland given the opportunity to retake part or all of their exam after complaints that results had been downgraded. The row broke out as national GCSE results were published in August. Exam regulator Ofqual concluded that January’s GCSE English assessments were “graded generously” but that the June boundaries were properly set and candidates’ work was properly graded.
The government is facing calls to lower the voting age across the UK, after it dropped its opposition to 16 year olds voting in the forthcoming referendum on Scottish independence, the Independent reports. Whilst supporters felt the concession will revive the debate about the participation of teenagers in general elections, senior Conservatives are reported to be hostile to the notion.
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