Agenda and minutes

Agenda and minutes

Venue: Council Chamber, Priory House, Monks Walk, Shefford

Contact: Paula Everitt  0300 300 4196

No. Item


Minutes pdf icon PDF 72 KB

To approve as a correct record the Minutes of the meeting of the Children’s Services Overview and Scrutiny Committee held on 18 October 2016 and to note actions taken since that meeting.





RESOLVED that the Minutes of the meeting of the Children’s Services Overview and Scrutiny Committee held on 18 October 2016 be confirmed and signed by the Chairman as a correct record, subject to the following amendments:-

That Cllrs Berry and Bowater were recorded as in attendance at the last meeting.

That an item on the Bedfordshire Police Effectiveness 2015, vulnerability revisit report for autumn 2016, be included in the forward plan at the appropriate time.



Members' Interests

To receive from Members any declarations of interest and of any political whip in relation to any agenda item.








Chairman's Announcements and Communications

To receive any announcements from the Chairman and any matters of communication.









To receive petitions from members of the public in accordance with the Public Participation Procedure as set out in Annex 2 of Part A4 of the Constitution.








Questions, Statements or Deputations

To receive any questions, statements or deputations from members of the public in accordance with the Public Participation Procedure as set out in Annex 1 of part A4 of the Constitution.









To consider any decision of the Executive referred to this Committee for review  in accordance with Procedure Rule 10.10 of Part D2.  








Requested Items

To consider any items referred to the Committee at the request of a Member under Procedure Rule 3.1 of Part D2 of the Constitution.








Executive Members' Updates


To receive a brief verbal update from the Executive Members for:-


·                Social Care and Housing

·                Education and Skills and

·                Health



The Executive Member for Social Care and Housing updated the Committee regarding the calendar of award and volunteering events which had recently been held across the region. Members were informed that there would be a briefing in relation to the Children’s Services Transformation Programme with a particular focus on Special Educational Needs and Disabilities, with a briefing on the budget on 6 January 2017.


The Executive Member for Education and Skills informed the Committee that the partnership vision for education was underway following recent locality workshops and would be submitted to the Committee in the near future. Local MP’s had been contacted with regards to the position in relation to grammar schools and parents would be supported in their understanding of recent changes to exam structures.


The Executive Member for Health highlighted that Sustainability and Transformation Plans had recently been announced by the NHS which were designed to fix gaps within the health system and all partners were working closely to progress this initiative.



Regional Schools Commissioner


The Regional Schools Commissioner will outline his role and how this fits with Children’s Services to bring about improved outcomes for children.




The Chairman welcomed the Regional Schools Commissioner (RSC) and colleagues from the Department of Education, who then delivered a presentation which highlighted the role of the RSC and regions of jurisdiction that explained that areas of focus were intervention and improving educational standards.


In light of the presentation Members discussed the following:-

·           Clarity regards DfE classification of the three tier education system for which it was confirmed that middle schools were deemed secondary schools.

·           Figures that the RSC agreed to provide regarding academy schools by sector.

·           There were no imminent changes proposed to the national curriculum.

·           The importance of ensuring a broad curriculum for all students, with a strong focus on apprenticeships and skills.

·           The importance of accountability in relation to the role of the RSC, a close working relationship with all partners and clarity around the complaints process for parents.

·           A report that would be published by the National Schools Commissioner in January 2017, which would detail the effectiveness of the RSC and recent outcomes.

·           The need to better anticipate when a school may be failing and the ability to hold the school and Trusts to account and encourage outstanding schools to support improvement locally.

·           Clarity regarding the definition of ‘coasting schools’ and the importance of external challenge and effective change at an early stage.

·           The importance of parent’s knowledge and expectations regards the role and performance of schools.

·           The role of Faith Schools within Multi Academy Trusts.


RECOMMENDED that the Executive Member engage with the Secretary of State for Education in order to strengthen school’s accountability within the Academy model, ensuring active engagement with parents.



Commissioning of New School Places in Barton-Le-Clay and Marston Moretaine for September 2018 pdf icon PDF 59 KB

This report seeks support for the proposed consultation by Arnold Academy (middle), Barton Le Clay, to expand by 1 form of entry (30 places in each middle school year group) by September 2018.


The Committee’s support is also sought for the publication of the official proposal for the proposed expansion of Church End Lower School (Forest End campus) Marston Moretaine, to expand by 1 form of entry (30 places in each lower school year group) by September 2018.


Additional documents:



The Executive Member for Education and Skills introduced a report which highlighted proposals in relation to the requirement of additional school places.


In light of the report Members discussed the following:-

·           Funding had been ring fenced for this initiative and was included within the Medium Term Financial Plan (MTFP).

·           Temporary accommodation could be provided for pupils if there was an identified need.

·           The need to secure Section 106 contributions to offset possible parking problems around schools, which could be exacerbated by further expansion and whether there was a need to amend current policy to allow greater control over this element.

·           An indication that the number of pupils per housing allocation was increasing, creating additional pressure.



1.         That the Committee support the 3 recommendations as set out within the Executive report.

2.         That the Committee recognises the occasions when school expansions may lead to problems relating to parking outside of schools

3.         That the Committee support, where appropriate and in line with current policy, the requirement to work closely with developers and planning to secure Section 106 contributions, enabling a broad range of mitigations to be introduced with regard (2) above.

4.         That the Executive recognise the increasing pupil yield from new housing developments and additional levels of young families settling in Central Bedfordshire was creating a pressure on existing school places.


Councillor Berry abstained from recommendation 2 and 3 in light of his Membership on the Development Management Committee.



Work Programme 2014/15 & Executive Forward Plan pdf icon PDF 66 KB


The report provides Members with details of the currently drafted Committee work programme and the latest Executive Forward Plan.


Additional documents:



That the Children’s Services Work Programme be agreed subject to the following amendments:-

·           Partnership Vision for Education – Date TBC

·           The 9 Principles of Pupils Places Planning – Date TBC

·           To identify coasting schools’ attainment – March 2017.

·           To clarify whether Retaining Key Workers be delivered to CS OSC or SC OSC and include within the relevant work programme.