I WAS glad to see Cllr Paul Andrews’ comments on the proposed local government reform (Gazette & Herald letters, August 26) and also Cllr Keane Duncan’s assurance that we will be fully consulted to find out what people want.

I do think that the government has gone about the matter in a very high-handed manner, proposing a solution before they have even established the need. Also, the extremely rapid timetable.

The matter needs to be considered carefully, and why the unseemly haste?

I would have thought that with Covid-19 is still a major threat, there are more pressing matters to attend to.

Michael Gwilliam, Norton

Solutions on facts

SO the Government has tied devolution, and the funding and freedom that go with it, to the creation of unitary authorities.

That being the case, the key is to get the best possible reorganisation for the people and economy of North Yorkshire.

The options need investigation, analysis and comparison to obtain the best model.

I am sure, that like me, all the regions elected representatives want the best solution based on facts and evidence.

Cllr Will Oxley, Malton

We’re here to help

THE pandemic has changed our lives this year, and we’re all aware of the things we miss from before lockdown.

But as the situation changes and children go back to school, suddenly we’re not looking back at what we miss, but ahead to brand new experiences.

Ordinarily, children who are about to move into primary school for the first time will have spent some time visiting their new school ahead of time to get used to how they’ll be spending their weekdays, but the pandemic and school closures meant that wasn’t a possibility this year.

To help families, our NSPCC-led Blackpool Better Start, funded by the National Lottery, created a great guide for pupils and parents around the town – it was full of great ideas on how to help children get ready for their first term, so I’d like to share a few below.

First, and most important, make sure they can wash their hands with soap without your help – that’s going to be essential going forward.

Next, have your children practice taking off their coats and shoes and putting them back on. Their uniform too – it’ll help them get used to their new outfits, and can help save time in the morning before school.

If you bring your child’s food to the table or their tray, it’s also worth having them practice carrying their food on a plate, ahead of spending time in the dinner hall.

Also, why not have them try new fruits or vegetables, so they’re more willing to try them at school? Make it fun, have them make their own fruit kebab using a wooden skewer and chunks of fruits they like and fruits they haven’t tried yet.

Lastly, but importantly, encourage your child to practice sharing – whether that’s sharing books with you and practicing their reading, taking turns while playing a board game, or sharing toys with a friend or sibling, it’s all great experience for them to take forward as they begin to make new friends in class.

There’s always advice and support available online too, at nspcc.org.uk or for children at childline.org.uk, so remember, we’re still here on the frontline for children, but we’re here to help you too.

Helen Westerman, NSPCC head of local campaigns