Agenda and minutes

Cabinet Member for Education
Monday, 10th July, 2017 4.00 pm

Venue: Conference Room A - Civic Offices. View directions

Contact: Lisa Gallacher 02392 834056  Email: lisa.gallacher@portsmouthcc.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

14.

Apologies for absence

Minutes:

There were no apologies for absence.

15.

Declarations of interest

Minutes:

Councillor Suzy Horton declared a personal interest as she is a governor at Craneswater Junior School.

 

16.

Targeted Short Breaks pdf icon PDF 435 KB

 

Purpose of report

                 

The purpose of the report is to share the findings of the Targeted Short Breaks consultation which ran between 9th January and 20th March 2017, and make a recommendation in light of the feedback and the findings of the corresponding Equalities Impact Assessment.

 

RECOMMENDED

     

(1)  It is recommended that the Cabinet Member for Education approves the decision not to pursue savings through making cuts to the Targeted Short Breaks budget at this stage on the basis that:

 

                                          i.    The consultation feedback and the Equalities Impact Assessment did not conclusively identify a way in which savings could be realised without it having a detrimental impact on the children and young people and their parents/carers who access these services

 

                                        ii.    The process did reveal the need to undertake a broader review of the targeted short break offer and the range of services commissioned in the future as part of the re-tendering process. This will be completed so that contacts can be in place by 1st April 2018, if possible delivering savings at the same time. 

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The report was introduced by Julia Katherine, Head of Inclusion. 

 

Councillor Horton thanked officers for the report and considered that this was a very pragmatic solution following the outcome of the consultation.  She also considered it very encouraging that Enable Ability was willing to discuss the outcome of the consultation with the council to explore a realistic way forward. 

 

The Cabinet Member endorsed these comments and was happy to approve the recommendations.

 

 

DECISION: The Cabinet Member for Education agreed not to pursue savings through making cuts to the Targeted Short Breaks budget at this stage on the basis that:

 

(1)  The consultation feedback and the Equalities Impact Assessment did not conclusively identify a way in which savings could be realised without it having a detrimental impact on the children and young people and their parents/carers who access these services

 

(2)  The process did reveal the need to undertake a broader review of the targeted short break offer and the range of services commissioned in the future as part of the re-tendering process. This will be completed so that contacts can be in place by 1st April 2018, delivering at the same time the level of saving required. 

 

17.

Home to School/College Transport pdf icon PDF 282 KB

Purpose of report

                 

The purpose of the report is to consider responses to the home to school/college transport consultation and identify areas for change to the Home to School Transport Policy and Post 16 Learners Statement in order to further address the continuing overspend of this budget. The proposed changes relate only to discretionary support and do not affect the council's delivery of its statutory responsibilities for home to school/college transport.

 

RECOMMENDED

     

It is recommended that the Cabinet Member for Education agree the following changes to the Home to School Transport Policy and Post 16 Learners Statement:

 

(i)            That the age range is lowered for eligible post 16 students (those with significant and exceptional needs) from 16-25 years to 16-19 years, in line with other Local Authorities, as from 1st September 2018. For those in Year 14 who meet the exceptional circumstances criteria and who start their college course in September 2017, the council will continue to provide transport assistance until July 2019.

 

(ii)          That the council ceases to provide transport for new placements of nursery age students who attend specialist nursery schools as from 1st September 2018.  All those children who currently receive transport assistance and who continue to meet the criteria will continue to be able to make an application for each year that they attend specialist nursery provision.  Applications are made on an annual basis.

 

(iii)         That the cost of privilege places on a minibus or taxi is increased from £495 per annum to £750 per annum as from 1st September 2018.

 

(iv)         That a two tier financial contribution of £495 per annum for low income families of post-16 students and £600 per annum for families of post-16 students who do not meet the criteria for low income, is introduced as from 1st September 2018.

 

(v)          That the points threshold for automatic entitlement to home to school/college transport is raised from 60 points to 70 points as from 1st September 2018. For those who are currently in receipt of this entitlement, this will continue until the end of their Key Stage or end of post-16 education, if they continue to meet criteria.

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The report was introduced by Julia Katherine, Head of Inclusion.  She clarified the proposed changes affected level 1 targeted short breaks only. 

 

In response to questions the following matters were clarified:

·        With regard to the transport for nursery age children who attend specialist nursery schools, Julia said that when respondents were presented with the 6 options this was the least favoured option, however, the trend is that parents increasingly want their children to attend local mainstream nurseries, so we need to look at how we can support those nurseries to meet children's special educational needs, where this is the parental preference.  The recommendation is to introduce this change from September 2018 so that parents will have all of the information they need before they consider placement preference. 

·         Councillor Horton raised concerns that option 5, raising the points threshold for automatic entitlement to home to school/college transport, would have an impact on a large number of students.  Julia explained that the points system is about automatic entitlement and parents can still appeal if they do not meet the points threshold.  The council are keen to promote young people's independence in their transition to adulthood. The recommendation is that this change is introduced for young people starting new college course from September 2018 to ensure that young people have all the information they need when they are considering college placements. The impact on young people accessing college placements will continue to be closely monitored.

 

                  The Cabinet Member said that it was important to note that the changes would not be made until September 2018.  She thanked officers for the through report. 

 

DECISIONS: The Cabinet Member for Education agreed the following changes to the Home to School Transport Policy and Post 16 Learners Statement:

 

(i)  That the age range is lowered for eligible post 16 students (those with significant and exceptional needs) from 16-25 years to 16-19 years, in line with other Local Authorities, as from 1st September 2018. For those in Year 14 who meet the exceptional circumstances criteria and who start their college course in September 2017, the council will continue to provide transport assistance until July 2019.

 

(ii)That the council ceases to provide transport for new placements of nursery age students who attend specialist nursery schools as from 1st September 2018.  All those children who currently receive transport assistance and who continue to meet the criteria will continue to be able to make an application for each year that they attend specialist nursery provision.  Applications are made on an annual basis.

 

(iii)That the cost of privilege places on a minibus or taxi is increased from £495 per annum to £750 per annum as from 1st September 2018.

 

(iv)That a two tier financial contribution of £495 per annum for low income families of post-16 students and £600 per annum for families of post-16 students who do not meet the criteria for low income, is introduced as from 1st September 2018.

 

(v)  That the points  ...  view the full minutes text for item 17.

18.

Maintained School Balances as at 31 March 2017 pdf icon PDF 458 KB

Purpose of report

To inform the Cabinet Member of the level of maintained schools' revenue and capital balances as at 31st March 2017.

 

 

RECOMMENDED that the Cabinet Member notes the level of maintained schools' revenue balances and capital balances as at 31st March 2017 as shown in Appendices 2 & 3 and the monitoring action taken by the council.

 

Minutes:

The report was introduced by Alison Egerton, Group Accountant.

 

 

DECISION: The Cabinet Member noted the level of maintained schools' revenue balances and capital balances as at 31st March 2017 as shown in Appendices 2 & 3 and the monitoring action taken by the council.

 

19.

2016-17 Dedicated Schools Grant Outturn Report for 2016-17 and Revised Budget 2017-18 pdf icon PDF 175 KB

Purpose of report

To inform the Cabinet Member of the year-end outturn position as at the end of March 2017 for the Dedicated Schools Grant (DSG) and to propose revisions to the DSG budget for 2017-18.

 

RECOMMENDED that the Cabinet Member:

 

a.         Note the year-end outturn budget position for the Dedicated Schools Grant as at the end of March 2017 and the variance explanations contained within this report.

 

b.        Approve the revised DSG budget for 2017-18 as set out in Appendix 1.

 

Minutes:

The report was introduced by Richard Webb, Finance Manager. 

 

 

DECISIONS: The Cabinet Member

a.      Noted the year-end outturn budget position for the Dedicated Schools Grant as at the end of March 2017 and the variance explanations contained within this report.

 

b.     Approved the revised DSG budget for 2017-18 as set out in Appendix 1.

 

20.

Education Budget Monitoring Outturn report for 2016-17 pdf icon PDF 315 KB

Purpose of report

To inform the Cabinet Member of the revenue expenditure position within the Education portfolio cash limit, together with the capital programme for the financial year 2016-17. This report sets out the budget position and contributing factors to the final portfolio underspend at the end of the financial year.

 

RECOMMENDED that the Cabinet Member:

 

(1)  Note the Education Portfolio outturn position for 2016/17 of £211,000 under the approved cash limit provision and the capital programme position at the end of the financial year.

 

(2)  Note the potential cash limit pressure for the 2017/18 financial year; and that this will continue to be monitored and reported regularly during the year.

 

Minutes:

The report was introduced by Richard Webb, Finance Manager.

 

 

DECISIONS: The Cabinet Member:

(1)  Noted the Education Portfolio outturn position for 2016/17 of £211,000 under the approved cash limit provision and the capital programme position at the end of the financial year.

 

(2)  Noted the potential cash limit pressure for the 2017/18 financial year; and that this will continue to be monitored and reported regularly during the year.

 

21.

SEND capital funding to support special school places pdf icon PDF 159 KB

Purpose of report

 

The purpose of this report is to provide an update on the progress and costs of the works required to adapt the accommodation at both Redwood Park Academy and Cliffdale Primary Academy to support the remodelling of the Special Schools and to support children with more complex needs.

 

RECOMMENDED that:

 

a)    the project at Cliffdale Primary Academy be completed in full. This recommendation would enable Cliffdale Academy to be fully equipped with sufficient and appropriate provision for primary aged pupils with more complex needs. The completion of the Cliffdale project will also enable modern modular accommodation to move to Redwood Park Academy, providing a medium-term temporary solution addressing the majority of the phase 1 requirements at Redwood Park Academy.

 

b)    £896,000 of capital funding is re-allocated from Redwood Park Academy to Cliffdale Primary in order to provide the necessary funding (of £3.096m) to complete the Cliffdale project and relocate the modular buildings.

 

c)    power be delegated to the Deputy Director of Children, Families and Education - Education, to approve the entering into contract for capital works set out in this report.

 

Minutes:

The report was introduced by Caroline Corcoran, Head of Sufficiency, Participation and Resources. 

 

In response to a question from Councillor Horton, Caroline confirmed that both schools were on board with this proposal and they are both under the same multi academy trust.

 

DECISIONS:

a)               That the project at Cliffdale Primary Academy be completed in full. This recommendation would enable Cliffdale Academy to be fully equipped with sufficient and appropriate provision for primary aged pupils with more complex needs. The completion of the Cliffdale project will also enable modern modular accommodation to move to Redwood Park Academy, providing a medium-term temporary solution addressing the majority of the phase 1 requirements at Redwood Park Academy.

 

b)              That £896,000 of capital funding is re-allocated from Redwood Park Academy to Cliffdale Primary in order to provide the necessary funding (of £3.096m) to complete the Cliffdale project and relocate the modular buildings.

 

c)               That power be delegated to the Deputy Director of Children, Families and Education - Education, to approve the entering into contract for capital works set out in this report.

 

22.

The Harbour School pdf icon PDF 141 KB

Purpose of report

 

(1)  To update the Cabinet Member for Education on the progress that has been made to address the financial and structural issues at The Harbour School (THS); whilst ensuring the educational offer to pupils is maintained and enhanced.

 

(2)  A similar report will be presented to Schools Forum on 12th July 2017 prior to a further report in the Autumn which will recommend that financial support is provided from the Dedicated Schools Grant to THS in order to pave the way for a transfer of THS to a Multi Academy Trust during 2018.

 

RECOMMENDED that the Cabinet Member notes the significant progress that has been made to address the financial and structural issues at The Harbour School and endorses the next steps that are now being taken as set out in section 4 of the report.

 

Minutes:

The report was introduced by Julia Katherine, Head of Inclusion. 

 

In response from a question from the Cabinet Member, Mike Stoneman, Deputy Director of Children Services - Education advised that Delta Education Trust were the preferred sponsor and they are the MAT for two other special schools in Poole and Basingstoke.

 

A further decision will come to the Cabinet member in the autumn to address the deficit position of the school.  

 

DECISION: The Cabinet Member noted the significant progress that has been made to address the financial and structural issues at The Harbour School and endorsed the next steps that are now being taken as set out in section 4 of the report.