Agenda and draft minutes

Schools' Forum
Thursday, 24th January, 2019 4.00 pm

Venue: Casterton College Rutland, Ryhall Road, Great Casterton, Stamford PE9 4AT

Contact: Jane Narey  01572 758311

Items
No. Item

1.

Minutes and Actions from the Previous Meeting pdf icon PDF 176 KB

To confirm the minutes and actions of the meeting of the Schools’ Forum held on Thursday, 20th September 2018

Minutes:

The minutes of the meeting of the Schools’ Forum held on the 20th September 2018 were confirmed as a true and accurate record of the meeting.

 

Action 1

DSG 2018/19 Budget Forecast

It was agreed that specific budget numbers for each school would be sent as soon as possible.  Mr Della Rocca to contact Dawn Greaves and Andrew Merry for an update regarding the action

Action had been completed but was then superseded by an email from Mr Della Rocca that explained that historic losses would be held by the Council and recovered over a period of time.

 

Action 2

The DSG 2018/19 Budget Forecast

Mr Della Rocca to circulate to members of the Schools Forum the link to the F40 minutes

The link to the F40 website was: http://www.f40.org.uk/executive-meetings/

 

Action 3

0.5% Transfer to High Needs Block

Mr Della Rocca agreed that he would speak with Ms Greaves to detail how the money should be allocated to each school and that an explanation letter (for information, not consultation) be sent to all schools with all the details as early as possible.      

Mr Della Rocca confirmed that an email had been sent to all schools.

 

Action 4

Teachers’ Pay

It was agreed that Ms Narey would circulate the email sent to Mr Smith by Ms Greaves to all School Forum members for their attention.

Action completed

 

Action 5

Teachers’ Pay

Dr O’Neill to share the two union letters he had received with Mr Smith for his agreement to share them with other members of the Schools Forum

Dr O’Neill had left Rutland County Council.  Action obsolete.

 

Action 6

Terms of Office

Ms Curtis to produce a briefing paper regarding which academies would have a 3 year term of office and which academies would have a 4 year term of office.

Action ongoing        

ACTION: Ms Curtis

Action 7

Forward Plan for 2019

Mr Smith and Ms Curtis to review and update the draft forward plan for 2019 and re-send it to members for their approval.          

Action completed and updated forward plan on agenda for approval.

2.

Declarations of Interest

In accordance with the Regulations, Members are invited to declare any personal or prejudicial interests they may have and the nature of those interests in respect of items on this Agenda and/or indicate if Section 106 of the Local Government Finance Act 1992 applies to them.

 

Minutes:

No declarations of interest were made. 

3.

Petitions, Deputations and Questions

To receive any petitions, deputations and questions received from Members of the Public in accordance with the provisions of Procedure Rule 217.

 

The total time allowed for this item shall be 30 minutes.  Petitions, declarations and questions shall be dealt with in the order in which they are received.  Questions may also be submitted at short notice by giving a written copy to the Committee Administrator 15 minutes before the start of the meeting.

 

The total time allowed for questions at short notice is 15 minutes out of the total time of 30 minutes.  Any petitions, deputations and questions that have been submitted with prior formal notice will take precedence over questions submitted at short notice.  Any questions that are not considered within the time limit shall receive a written response after the meeting and be the subject of a report to the next meeting.

(5 MINUTES for items 1, 2, 3)

 

 

Minutes:

No petitions, deputations or questions had been received.

4.

Funding Update

Minutes:

Reports from Ms Greaves were presented by Mr Della Rocca. During discussion the following points were noted:

4a

The DSG 2018/19 Budget Forecast pdf icon PDF 82 KB

To receive a report from Dawn Greaves, Accountant

Additional documents:

Minutes:

 

i.          Additional funding of £84k had been received from the DfE for the High Needs Block. Similar funding was also planned to be received in the 2019/20 budget.  The over-spend would be reduced by the additional funding but it would not be removed. 

ii.         If a local authority had an overall cumulative DSG deficit of 1% then an official recovery plan must be produced. 

 

AGREED: 

a.         The Schools Forum noted the forecast position for the 2018/19 Dedicated Schools Grant.

4b

The DSG 2019/20 Budget pdf icon PDF 81 KB

Briefing regarding next year’s budget

Minutes:

 

i.          Extra funding would be received in next year’s budget but only £440k and this would not be enough.

ii.         Information regarding the allocation of funding would be issued to schools by the end of January.

iii.        It would appear that the additional funding for early years would not be recouped as originally expected.

iv.        Concern was expressed regarding the impact on future funding from DfE because of  potentially lower census figures which did not include the  2 new nurseries, one which has just opened and one due to open (Oakham & Cottesmore) and there would be the movement of military families to consider which could further increase numbers to be funded.

v.         Extra funding of £50k would be received for SEND facilities.  Additional places were being processed.  The aim would be to improve our high needs offer in order to provide a better offer and a good quality service.  However, funding was not the only issue as the lack of qualified staff, equipment and facilities also gave concern. 

vi.        The financial situation continued to remain demanding especially with the DfE not acknowledging the full extent of the funding crisis. 

vii.      A whole schools approach was required in order to resolve the ongoing issues.

 

AGREED: 

a.         The Schools Forum noted the DSG allocations

4c

High Needs

Minutes:

 

i.          The question was raised regarding the basis of the extra High Needs funding.  ‘The allocation to local authorities of £125 million [was made] on the basis of Office of National Statistics’ projections of the 2 to 18 aged population for mid-2019 in each local authority’.

 

4d

Recovery Plan pdf icon PDF 141 KB

To receive a report from Saverio Della Rocca and Kevin Quinn (FOR INFORMATION AND DISCUSSION)

 

(30 MINUTES FOR ALL ITEMS)

Minutes:

A report from Mr Della Rocca and Mr Quinn was presented to the group.  During discussion the following points were noted:

 

x.         Based on the forecast position, the Council would not need to submit a formal Recovery Plan to the DfE as our overall cumulative DSG deficit would be 0.5%.

xi.        However, the Council would need to produce a local Recovery Plan to address the indicated further overspends.

xii.      It was agreed that the Recovery Plan would be better discussed at a Headteachers’ Conference specifically arranged to discuss High Needs, SEND and Early Years. 

 

AGREED: 

a.         Ms Curtis, Mr Quinn, Mrs Milner and Mr Smith would meet to discuss how the LA should arrange the Headteachers’ Conference to specifically discuss High Needs, SEND and Early Years.

ACTION: Miss Narey

b.         Invitations to the Headteachers’ Conference would be issued from the Schools’ Forum, not the LA.

5.

EYFS Working Party: Update

To receive an update from Sharon Milner, Chair of the EYFS Working Party (FOR INFORMATION)

(5 MINUTES)

Minutes:

A verbal update was received from Mrs Milner.  During the discussion the following was noted:

 

i.          There was consensus around the need to maintain the early years’ offer.

ii.         Training had been working well with funding from a central budget and positive feedback had been received from attendees.

iii.        Level 3 and 4 training was being provided by RALSS

iv.        Rutland currently had 20% capacity but this would increase with the introduction of a new nursery at Kendrew Barracks, Cottesmore.

v.         The financial situation was not ideal but seemed more positive. 

 

6.

School Capacity (SCAP) Returns

To receive a verbal update on pupil place planning assessment returns from Gill Curtis, Head of Lifelong Learning. FOR INFORMATION ONLY

(5 MINUTES)

Minutes:

A verbal update was received from Gill Curtis, Head of Service.  During the discussion the following points were noted:

 

i.           The Rutland Learning Trust had applied for permission from the DfE for Cottesmore Academy to reduce its class size to 30 pupils in each year group.  Ms Curtis confirmed that the LA had no objections to this proposal.

ii.          More SCAP data would be available in June/July 2019.

 

7.

Election Results - Autumn 2018 pdf icon PDF 41 KB

To receive a verbal report from Gill Curtis, Head of School Improvement (FOR INFORMATION)

(5 MINUTES)

Minutes:

A discussion was held regarding the recent membership elections and the current attendance of members.  The following points were noted:

 

i.          All those members whose membership had been up for renewal in autumn 2018 had been successful in retaining their membership:

 

Name

Representing

Term of Office Starting

Mr C Smith (Chair)

Academies

Nov 2018 

Mrs S Milner (Vice Chair)

Academies

Nov 2018 

Mr S Cox

Special Schools

Nov 2018 

Mrs M Darlington

PVI

Nov 2018 

Mr B Gale

Trade Unions

Nov 2018 

Mr R Gooding

Academies

Nov 2018 

Mr R Shore

Post 16 Provision

Nov 2018 

Mr S Williams

Academies

Nov 2018 

Mr J Woodhead

Dioceses

Nov 2018 

 

 

ii.         Ms Curtis also confirmed that Mr John Harrison, Head of School at Harington School had been appointed as the deputy representative for the Post 16 Provision. 

iii.        Mr Woodward reported that Mr Andreas Menzies would be the deputy for the Dioceses.

 

AGREED:

a.         The Schools’ Forum should increase and strengthen its deputy membership and that attendance by members had to improve (attendance record attached).

b.         Mrs Johnstone would become the deputy for Special Schools once a replacement Maintained Schools deputy was found.

c.         Once a member had not attended two consecutive Schools’ Forum meetings, a reminder letter would be sent from the Strategic Director for People and the Forum would vote at the next quorate meeting to remove or retain the member. 

 

8.

CHANGE IN LEADERSHIP

To receive a verbal update from Gill Curtis (FOR INFORMATION ONLY)

(5 MINUTES)

Minutes:

A verbal update regarding the recent structure change in the Council’s People Directorate was received from Ms Curtis, Head of Service.  During the discussion the following points were noted:

 

i.          Dr Tim O’Neill left the Council at the end of December 2018 for a new position at Birmingham City Council.

ii.         Mr Mark Andrews had been appointed as the new Strategic Director for People (DCS, DASS) and would attend future meetings of the Schools’ Forum.

iii.        Mr John Morley had been appointed as the new Deputy Director for Adults Services and recruitment was ongoing for his equivalent for Childrens Services.

 

9.

Any Urgent Business

(5 MINUTES FOR FINAL AGENDA ITEMS)

9a

Letter from the Education and Skills Funding Agency pdf icon PDF 79 KB

Minutes:

A letter regarding funding for school admission appeals was distributed to attendees.  The letter was deemed not relevant to this LA as school admission appeals were not funded from the central block.

 

FOR INFORMATION

The appeals service provided by Peterborough Legal Services, for schools where RCC is the admission authority, is included within the wider Service Level Agreement that RCC has with Peterborough.

10.

Review of Forward Plan and Dates of Next Meeting

10a

Forward Plan for 2019 pdf icon PDF 76 KB

Minutes:

The Forward Plan for 2019 was formally approved.

10b

Meeting Dates for 2019

·         Thursday, 11th April 2019, 4.00 – 5.00 p.m., Council Chamber

·         Thursday, 13th June 2019, 4.00 – 5.00 p.m., Council Chamber

·         Thursday, 10th October 2019, 4.00 – 5.00 p.m., Council Chamber

Minutes:

The meeting dates for 2019 were confirmed as follows:

 

·         Thursday, 11th April 2019, 4.00 – 5.00 p.m., Council Chamber

·         Thursday, 13th June 2019, 4.00 – 5.00 p.m., Council Chamber

·         Thursday, 10th October 2019, 4.00 – 5.00 p.m., Council Chamber

 

11.

Summary of Actions

Minutes:

 

No.

Ref.

Action

Person

1.     

2

Terms of Office

Ms Curtis to produce a briefing paper regarding which academies would have a 3 year term of office and which academies would have a 4 year term of office.

Ms G Curtis

2.     

4 c.

Ms Curtis, Mr Quinn, Mrs Milner and Mr Smith would meet to discuss how the LA should arrange the Headteachers’ Conference to specifically discuss High Needs, SEND and Early Years.

 

Miss J Narey