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(1)With the requisite consent, the members of the Parent Forums of two or more schools in the area of an education authority may decide that a body (to be known as a “Combined Parent Council”) should be established for both, or as the case may be all, of the schools (in this section and in section 17 referred to as the “represented schools”).
(2)In subsection (1), “requisite consent”–
(a)is consent obtained after each member of the Parent Forum in each of the represented schools has been given written notice of the proposed decision with an invitation to the member in question to indicate, within such reasonable time as the proposer may specify in the invitation, whether the member agrees that the decision be taken, and
(b)is the consent of, in each of those schools, the majority of such members of the parent forum as respond timeously to that invitation.
(3)It is immaterial, for the purposes of this section, whether as respects any of the represented schools a scheme for the establishment of a Parent Council is being, or has been, prepared or a Parent Council has been established.
(4)Except that any such Parent Council ceases to exist when the Combined Parent Council is established.
(5)Where by virtue of subsection (4) a Parent Council ceases to exist, any property belonging to it passes to the Combined Parent Council.
(6)If a decision is made under subsection (1), the education authority are–
(a)to prepare a scheme for the establishment, by the Parent Forums, of the Combined Parent Council,
(b)to send a copy of that scheme to each of the members of the Parent Forums, and
(c)to make such arrangements as are necessary to implement the scheme.
(7)The arrangements mentioned in subsection (6)(c) must include the preparation of a constitution for the Combined Parent Council.
(8)A Combined Parent Council is established when first constituted by virtue of arrangements made under subsection (6); and is, as soon as practicable thereafter–
(a)to intimate to–
(i)the headteachers of the represented schools,
(ii)the members of the Parent Forums,
(iii)pupils in attendance at the represented schools, and
(iv)such other persons as it appears to the council appropriate to include for the purposes of this subsection,
that it has been established,
(b)to provide them and the education authority with information as to who the members of the council are and as to how to communicate with it, and
(c)to provide each of the headteachers of the represented schools with a copy of that constitution.
(9)The Combined Parent Council is itself to determine the name by which it is to be known.
(10)Intimation under subsection (8)(a)(ii) or (iv) is to include a note of the functions of a Combined Parent Council as set out in section 8(1) and applied by subsection (12) (of this section).
(11)Where one or more of the represented schools is a primary school, intimation under subsection (8)(a)(ii) or (iv) is also to include a note of the functions of a Combined Parent Council as set out in section 8(2) and applied by subsection (12) (of this section).
(12)Sections 2(4)(c), 7(1) and (4), 8(1) to (15), 9 to 11 and 14 apply, with the necessary modifications, in relation to a Combined Parent Council and the represented schools, as they apply in relation to a Parent Council and the school for which the Parent Council is established.
(13)Subsection (14) applies where a Combined Parent Council is being established and one or more of the represented schools is a denominational school (within the meaning given by section 7(3)).
(14)The constitution of the Combined Parent Council must provide for–
(a)the church or denominational body in whose interest a represented school is conducted, or
(b)where there is more than one such church or denominational body, each church or body,
to nominate at least one person to be a co-opted member of the council.
(15)Sections 5(3) and 6(1) to (9) cease to apply in relation to any school on the making of a decision under subsection (1) by the members of Parent Forums which include the Parent Forum of the school but apply again to the school (either or both)–
(a)on its withdrawing from the represented schools,
(b)on the Combined Parent Council established by virtue of that decision ceasing to exist.
(16)A Combined Parent Council ceases to exist when, by virtue of a school–
(a)being discontinued or amalgamated with another school, or
(b)withdrawing from the represented schools,
the “represented schools” no longer comprise more than one school.
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