Agenda item

Discussion of Future Topics for the Education, Children and Young People (ECYP) Scrutiny Panel

The Education, Children and Young People (ECYP) Scrutiny Panel

members are asked to suggest and give consideration to potential review

topics for submission to the next meeting of the Scrutiny Management Panel

(which is due to meet on 25 July 2014).

Suggestions so far include:

(i) Pupil Premium

(ii) Home to School Transport

(iii)Child Sexual Exploitation

(iv)Troubled Families Programme

(v) School Catchment Areas


Any other areas of interest members would be interested in looking into that

are within the panel's remit are welcomed.

RECOMMENDED that the ECYP Scrutiny Panel makes prioritised

suggestions of suitable review topics for consideration by the Scrutiny

Management Panel.


The panel was advised that the Scrutiny Management Panel were due to meet on 25 July 2014 to allocate and prioritise review topics for this scrutiny panel.  Julian Wooster had put forward some suggested topics on the agenda, some of which had been topics the panel had considered last year. 

The chair of the panel, Councillor Purvis invited the panel to put forward any additional topics for review. 

Councillor Godier suggested that a review into school induction days for children moving to new schools might be an interesting area for the panel to review.  The panel agreed to put this forward to the Scrutiny Management Panel (SMP) as a topic.  Councillor Godier also suggested that the panel may wish to review the EMAS service as he had been advised there were a limited number of staff to provide support for the whole city.  Julien Kramer advised he could circulate a briefing note to the panel on the service. 


Councillor Purvis suggested that the provision of special education needs in the city might also be a topic to review.  He said this was touched upon within the school governance review last year and Councillor Stagg added that this was topical in particular with the future relocation of the Harbour School.  Julien Kramer said that there was an incomplete pattern of special education provision in the city and the panel could review how children with special educational needs are provided for in special schools compared to those in main stream schools.  The Panel agreed to put this forward to the SMP. 

Julien Kramer added that the panel might wish to review school improvement as a topic. 


Julien Kramer, Interim Head of Education and Kelly Nash, Corporate Performance Manager were invited to comment on the proposed topics put forward on the agenda:

(1)  Pupil Premium - this was a topical theme and officers advised the panel may wish to consider outcomes, best practice and how schools are making the best use of this money. The panel agreed this was a relevant topic to put forward.  Councillor Purvis suggested this review could initially consist of a workshop style format inviting head teachers to share how they are using the money.  This could be followed up by two or three meetings for the panel to form their recommendations.  Schools could be asked to submit a report on what they are spending the money on.  Julien Kramer added that this information is available and he could provide this for the panel. 

(2)  Home to School Transport - Officers advised that the new policy comes into effect in September so any processes and any potential savings will not be embedded/realised at the moment.  The panel agreed that it would not be appropriate to review this at this time and this could be a topic for next year. 

(3)  Child SexualExploitation - Kelly Nash advised the panel that the Safer Portsmouth Partnership were finalising the Child Exploitation Strategy.  Therefore their aspirations would not yet be firmly embedded and it would not be appropriate to review this at this stage.  Kelly advised that she would ask the Partnership for a written report and timeline to give to the panel.  The panel said this could always be reviewed next year if appropriate. 

(4)  Troubled Families Programme - Officers advised that this area had been drawn into several recent scrutiny reviews.  The cross cutting nature of the agenda also provides this area of work with governance links to the three key partnerships in the city so it is heavily governed.  Councillor Stagg added that James Hill, Troubled Families Co-ordinator regularly reports to the Safer Portsmouth Partnership and the Children's Trust Board.  The Panel agreed not to put this topic forward. 

(5)  School Catchment Areas - Julien Kramer advised that due to the population in the city increasing these would need to be reviewed in due course.  The City of Portsmouth Boy's School is due to become an Academy which would mean the school no longer has a catchment area.  This would have a major impact on the catchment for Mayfield School.  The panel also raised the issue of schools in Portsmouth considering moving to all through schools.  It was agreed that this topic be considered next year once the proposals have been implemented.

RESOLVED that the suggested review topics be put forward to Scrutiny Management Panel for agreement in the following order:

1.    Pupil Premium

2.    The provision of Special Educational needs in the city. 

3.    School induction days for pupils