Agenda, decisions and minutes

Cabinet Member for Education
Wednesday, 20th March, 2019 5.00 pm

Venue: The Executive Meeting Room - Third Floor, The Guildhall. View directions

Contact: David Penrose 02392 834870  Email: david.penrose@portsmouthcc.gov.uk

Webcast: View the webcast

Items
No. Item

13.

Apologies for Absence

Minutes:

Apologies were received from Councillor Hockaday.

14.

Declarations of Members' Interests

Minutes:

Councillor Horton declared a personal non-prejudicial interest as the Vice Chair of Governors at Craneswater Junior School.

 

Councillor Coles declared a personal non-prejudicial interest as a member of the Local Advisor Board of Penhale Infant School (thinking Schools Academy Trust).

15.

Willows Centre for Children - end of statutory consultation to close and reopen the Centre under Solent Academies Trust pdf icon PDF 142 KB

Purpose of report

                

The report sets out the outcome of the statutory consultation which was undertaken between 18th January 2019 and 15th February 2019 on the proposal to close Willows Centre for Children and to continue to deliver the specialist provision provided by Willows as part of an expanded Cliffdale Primary Academy, operated by Solent Academies Trust.

 

Recommendations:

 

It is recommended that the Cabinet Member:

 

a)        Consider the response to the statutory consultation carried out on the proposal to close Willows Centre for Children

 

b)        Authorise the Director for Children, Families and Education to implement the proposal so that Willows Centre for Children closes at midnight on 31st August 2019 provided that the application to make significant changes to Cliffdale Primary Academy from 1st September 2019 is approved by the Secretary of State.

Additional documents:

Decision:

Recommendations

 

The Cabinet Member:

 

a)      Considered the response to the statutory consultation carried out on the proposal to close Willows Centre for Children.

 

b)      Authorised the Director for Children, Families and Education to implement the proposal so that Willows Centre for Children closes at midnight on 31stAugust 2019 provided that the application to make significant changes to Cliffdale Primary Academy from 1st September 2019 is approved by the Secretary of State.

Minutes:

The Head of Sufficiency, Participation and Resources presented the report and highlighted the following areas:

 

·      Willows Centre for Children was a maintained special school offering specialist early years and primary phase education to SEN children from a site next to Cliffdale Primary Academy (a special academy school for pupils aged 5 to 11). The Willows Centre for Children has 48 specialist places for nursery, reception and year 1 pupils. Pupils are placed at the Willows by the Local Authority.

 

·      The Council and the Governors of the Centre had undertaken a pre-statutory consultation on a proposal to close the Centre and to deliver the specialist provision as part of an expanded Cliffdale Primary Academy, operated by Solent Academies Trust.

 

·      The Centre was a good school, but as a very small one it faced increasing financial uncertainty.

 

·      There was a continuing need for specialist nursery places in Portsmouth and the proposal would safeguard the future of the provision which would be provided going forward. Staff from the Centre would transfer to Solent Academies Trust under TUPE legislation.

 

RESOLVED:

 

The Cabinet Member:

 

a)      Considered the response to the statutory consultation carried out on the proposal to close Willows Centre for Children.

 

b)      Authorised the Director for Children, Families and Education to implement the proposal so that Willows Centre for Children closes at midnight on 31stAugust 2019 provided that the application to make significant changes to Cliffdale Primary Academy from 1st September 2019 is approved by the Secretary of State.