Why Won’t Council Sever All Links With School?

The father of murdered Tayport teenager Karen Dewar has condemned Fife Council for choosing not to sever links with the residential school which was criticised over failings in its handling of his daughter’s killer.

Despite the management of Geilsland School in Ayrshire allegedly being criticised in a Strathclyde Police report — and claims being made that it did nothing to address Colyn Evans’ behavioural problems prior to the murder — the local authority has not ruled out sending troubled youngsters to the school.

Mr Dewar said he was disgusted the council’s social work department has not made it policy to formally stop sending children displaying social, behavioural and emotional difficulties to a place which “clearly failed to do anything to help him” (Evans).

He said, however, that as well as pointing the finger at the school for not helping Evans address his problems, social workers in Fife must take their share of the blame. “Once he was in that place it was like they forgot about him, said Mr Dewar.

“Social workers were told umpteen times about his behaviour in the school and they should have contacted the police. The people dealing with him knew what he was like, but Fife’s social workers chose to ignore it and let him out a year later.”

Kenny Leinster, Fife Council’s senior social work manager, said: “The last planned placement of a child in Geilsland School ended in December 2005.
“Since then Geilsland has been used on only one occasion for one overnight period.”