The West Dunbartonshire question

25th June 2004 at 01:00
First there was the West Lothian question. Now it is the West Dunbartonshire question that is gaining popular notoriety.

The question is simple: who wants an pound;80,000 job as director of education and cultural services in West Dunbartonshire?

Brian McCafferty, a senior adviser for vocational education with the Office for Standards in Education south of the border, was selected over six weeks ago but this week turned down the post "owing to a sudden change in his domestic circumstances".

No official confirmation of his appointment was released after the selection meeting on May 11, although schools were notified of his impending arrival. The initial delay was said to be due to thorough background checks. Mr McCafferty, a native of Clydebank, was picked on the second trawl after the previous choice, Carol McAlpine, also pulled out for personal reasons after a furore over her estranged husband's criminal past.

The authority was apparently unaware when it made the appointment that her husband had been jailed for 10 years for sexual offences against a girl.

Mrs McAlpine is also a Scot working in England and is a former secondary head.

In a statement this week, Jim McCallum, West Dunbartonshire's education convener, said: "We are naturally disappointed at this sudden turn of events but we respect Mr McCafferty's decision and his reasons for it.

"The council will move rapidly to consider our options. The bottom line is for this council to ensure that we are well placed to take forward the important agenda of school regeneration over the coming months and years."

The last director, Ian McMurdo, took early retirement in April after 10 years in post.


Subscribe to get access to the content on this page.

If you are already a Tes/ Tes Scotland subscriber please log in with your username or email address to get full access to our back issues, CPD library and membership plus page.

Not a subscriber? Find out more about our subscription offers.
Subscribe now
Existing subscriber?
Enter subscription number


The guide by your side – ensuring you are always up to date with the latest in education.

Get Tes magazine online and delivered to your door. Stay up to date with the latest research, teacher innovation and insight, plus classroom tips and techniques with a Tes magazine subscription.
With a Tes magazine subscription you get exclusive access to our CPD library. Including our New Teachers’ special for NQTS, Ed Tech, How to Get a Job, Trip Planner, Ed Biz Special and all Tes back issues.

Subscribe now