Agenda and minutes

Scrutiny Board (Children and Families)
Wednesday, 24th April, 2019 10.00 am

Venue: Civic Hall, Leeds, LS1 1UR

Contact: Angela Brogden (0113 37 88661)  Email: Angela.brogden@leeds.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

CO-OPTED MEMBERS (VOTING)

 

Mr E A Britten – Church Representative (Catholic)

Mr A Graham – Church Representative (Church of England)

Mrs K Blacker – Parent Governor Representative (Primary)

Ms J Ward – Parent Governor Representative (Secondary)

 

CO-OPTED MEMBERS (NON-VOTING)

 

Ms C Foote – Teacher Representative

Mrs A Kearsley – Early Years Representative

 

88.

Appeals Against Refusal of Inspection of Documents

To consider any appeals in accordance with Procedure Rule 25* of the Access to Information Procedure Rules (in the event of an Appeal the press and public will be excluded).

 

(* In accordance with Procedure Rule 25, notice of an appeal must be received in writing by the Head of Governance Services at least 24 hours before the meeting).

Minutes:

There were no appeals.

 

 

89.

Exempt Information - Possible Exclusion of the Press and Public

1.  To highlight reports or appendices which officers have identified as containing exempt information, and where officers consider that the public interest in maintaining the exemption outweighs the public interest in disclosing the information, for the reasons outlined in the report.

 

2.  To consider whether or not to accept the officers recommendation in respect of the above information.

 

3.  If so, to formally pass the following resolution:-

 

RESOLVED – That the press and public be excluded from the meeting during consideration of the following parts of the agenda designated as containing exempt information on the grounds that it is likely, in view of the nature of the business to be transacted or the nature of the proceedings, that if members of the press and public were present there would be disclosure to them of exempt information, as follows:

 

No exempt items have been identified.

Minutes:

There were no exempt items.

 

 

90.

Late Items

To identify items which have been admitted to the agenda by the Chair for consideration.

 

(The special circumstances shall be specified in the minutes.)

Minutes:

There were no formal late items, however there was some supplementary information circulated prior to the meeting in relation to Item 7 – Annual Standards Report 2017-18 (Minute 94 refers).

 

 

91.

Declaration of Disclosable Pecuniary Interests

To disclose or draw attention to any disclosable pecuniary interests for the purposes of Section 31 of the Localism Act 2011 and paragraphs 13-16 of the Members’ Code of Conduct.

Minutes:

There were no declarations of disclosable pecuniary interests.

 

 

92.

Apologies for Absence and Notification of Substitutes

To receive any apologies for absence and notification of substitutes.

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received from Councillors J Lennox and K Renshaw, with no substitutes in attendance. Apologies were also received from Co-opted Members Helen Bellamy, Debbie Reilly and Claire Hopkins.

 

 

93.

Minutes of the previous meeting pdf icon PDF 307 KB

To approve as a correct record the minutes of the meeting held on 6th March 2019 and the Call In meeting held on 8th April 2019.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

RESOLVED – That the minutes of the meetings held 6th March 2019 and 8th April 2019 be approved as a correct record of the meetings.

 

 

94.

Annual Standards Report 2017-18 pdf icon PDF 113 KB

To receive a report from the Head of Governance and Scrutiny Support presenting the Annual Standards Report for 2017-18.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Head of Governance and Scrutiny Support submitted a report presenting the Annual Standards Report for 2017-18.

 

Members were informed that the supplementary information distributed prior to the meeting was a corrected version of Key Stage 2 data on page 44 of the report, along with an additional data chart in relation to the percentage of Key Stage 2 pupils reaching the expected standard in Reading, Writing and Maths (RMW).

 

The following were in attendance:

 

-  Councillor Jonathan Pryor, Executive Member for Learning, Skills and Employment

-  Phil Mellen, Deputy Director for Learning

-  Sal Tariq, Deputy Director of Children and Families

-  Anne Fell, Area Lead Primary Learning Improvement

-  Kevin Paynes, Leadership and Management Lead

-  Erica Hiorns, School Improvement Adviser

 

Councillor Jonathon Pryor, Executive Member for Learning, Skills and Employment, introduced the item. In doing so, he apologised for the errors in earlier versions of the report. Councillor Pryor also highlighted some areas where Leeds was improving at a faster rate than nationally. The Deputy Director for Learning added that much of the work to tackle the 15 priorities set out in the report, would be addressed by the new 3 A’s Strategy.

 

Members discussed a number of matters, including:

 

·  Early years performance. Members commented that Early Years progress was behind national, despite the increasing number of providers with ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’ OfSTED judgements, and sought more information as to why this was the case. The Board were informed that this was largely due to the increase in population, along with an increase in the complexity of needs of early year’s children, particularly in relation to SEND and SEMH.

·  Take-up of free early years hours. Members were informed, in relation to the above point, that around 10% of children eligible for free early years hours were not accessing the provision. This was reported to be due to a number of reasons, including disparity in quality of provision across the city, complexity around mobility, and the need for better engagement with private providers. Members were assured that the new 3 A’s Strategy would provide a clear focus for overcoming this issue. The Chair requested more information on this matter to be submitted to a future meeting.

·  Increase in children and young people with SEMH needs and SEND. Members sought more information in regards to the effectiveness of the current training offer to staff in early years settings, considering the higher threshold for EHCPs. In response, the Board was informed that SENCOs in each school were responsible for supporting other teachers within the school, and that early identification comes as part of the generic training package for early years teachers.

·  Presentation of data within the report. Members requested that maps be incorporated into the design of the report for 2018/19, to illustrate differences in outcomes across the city. Additionally, there were some comments about misdirection of the data to show a more positive picture.

·  Internal Exclusions. Members sought clarity about the steps taken to address the prevalence of  ...  view the full minutes text for item 94.

95.

Scrutiny Inquiry into Children's Centres - recommendation tracking update pdf icon PDF 390 KB

To receive a report from the Head of Governance and Scrutiny Support and Director of Children and Families presenting an update on the implementation of the recommendations arising from the previous Scrutiny inquiry into Children’s Centres.

Minutes:

The Head of Governance and Scrutiny Support and Director of Children and Families submitted a report presenting an update on the implementation of the recommendations arising from the previous Scrutiny inquiry into Children’s Centres.

 

The following were in attendance:

 

-  Councillor Lisa Mulherin, Executive Member for Children and Families

-  Sal Tariq, Deputy Director of Children and Families

-  Phil Mellen, Deputy Director for Learning

-  Andrea Richardson, Head of Service, Learning for Life

-  Amanda Ashe, Children’s Centre & Early Start Lead

 

The status of recommendations were agreed as follows:

 

-  Recommendation 1 – Not fully implemented (Progress made acceptable. Continue monitoring.)

-  Recommendation 2 – Not fully implemented (obstacle). Scrutiny Board to determine appropriate action.

-  Recommendation 3 – Not fully implemented (Progress made acceptable. Continue monitoring.)

-  Recommendation 4 – Not fully implemented (Progress made acceptable. Continue monitoring.)

-  Recommendation 5 – Not fully implemented (Progress made acceptable. Continue monitoring.)

-  Recommendation 6 – Not fully implemented (Progress made acceptable. Continue monitoring.)

-  Recommendation 7 – Not fully implemented (Progress made acceptable. Continue monitoring.)

-  Recommendation 8 – Not fully implemented (Progress made acceptable. Continue monitoring.)

-  Recommendation 9 – Not fully implemented (Progress made acceptable. Continue monitoring.)

 

 

The following key points were also raised during consideration of this item:

 

·  Cluster Partnership Support to Children’s Centres. Members expressed some concerns about the consistency of the relationships between the Clusters and the Children’s Centres, particularly in relation to the Children’s Centres participation in formal governance. The Chair noted that there was a lack of representation from the Children’s Centres at the JCC in his ward, and queried whether this was an isolated incident. Members were assured that this would be investigated.

·  Buildings and Facilities. Members were informed that a few Children’s Centres within the city were currently being refurbished, including Burley Park Children’s Centre that the Board visited as part of the original inquiry. Members requested a visit to be arranged to the Children’s Centre once the refurbishment was complete and prior to the next inquiry tracking session.

·  Financial Sustainability. The Chair requested evidence of benefits from current funding, and comment from the Director of Resources and Housing regarding the financial sustainability of the budget.

·  GP Services. Members were advised that various attempts had been made in relation to forming relationships between children’s centres and their local GP practices, however there was still not a consistent approach to working in partnership. GPs had reported that they find it difficult to obtain current information about local communities as they do not have the time to conduct the research, and in response officers acknowledged that a way of sharing data needed to be established. The Board noted that there was a clear obstacle to progress, and that a further meeting would be facilitated to endeavour to understand the challenges associated with establishing partnership working between local GP services and Children’s Centres. The Chair noted that the Executive Member for Health and Wellbeing, the Director of Public Health and the relevant lead  ...  view the full minutes text for item 95.

96.

Scrutiny Inquiry - Is Leeds a child friendly city? pdf icon PDF 439 KB

To receive a report from the Head of Governance and Scrutiny Support presenting additional information in response to requests made by the Board during the course of its inquiry this year.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Head of Governance and Scrutiny Support submitted a report presenting additional information in response to requests made by the Board during the course of its inquiry this year.

 

The following was appended to the report:

 

-  Leeds Youth Council Open Spaces Questionnaire Results

-  Regional Youth Voice & Bus18 Meeting, Notes and Summary of Actions

-  Youth Voice Summit Event Report, March 2019

 

The following were in attendance:

 

-  Councillor Lisa Mulherin, Executive Member for Children and Families

-  Sal Tariq, Deputy Director of Children and Families

-  Phil Mellen, Deputy Director for Learning

-  Sue Rumbold, Chief Officer, Partnerships and Health

-  Jane Walne, Head of Programmes and Projects, City Development

-  Hannah Lamplugh, Voice and Influence Lead

-  Kathryn Holloway, Team Leader, City Development

-  Jenny Fisher, Principal Officer, Planning and Sustainable Development, City Development

-  Richard Cracknell, Voice and Influence Coordinator

-  Vicki Marsden, Play Strategy Officer

 

Parental engagement and influence on educational outcomes

 

·  Members were informed that most schools in the city are now keen to engage with parents around strategic plans, but further progress was needed. Members queried how this could be achieved, and were informed that there was an opportunity to share best practice. Members were also advised that the Voice, Influence and Change (VIC) Team had developed a model and guidance for Parent Councils across primary schools in the city.

·  Members commented on the likelihood for more engagement in primary schools, but challenges within secondary schools. Members queried whether there were varied approaches taken by Multi Academy Trusts (MATs) depending on whether they were local or national bodies. In response, the Board was informed that despite the type of MAT, all parental engagement activities tend to be devised and delivered locally.

·  The need for engagement with parents who do not take-up free pre-school hours that they are entitled to, to understand the barriers to access and how to encourage enrolment.

 

The voice and influence of young people surrounding the development of child friendly spaces through planning and City Development processes

 

·  There was some discussion surrounding the extent to which young people had been consulted during the recent Core Strategy and Site Allocation Plan examinations. Linked to this, Members were informed that consultation workshops in relation to the initial development stages of the Core Strategy had took place back in 2006 with the Leeds Youth Council.

·  Whilst acknowledging that there are clear legislative and external considerations linked to the way in which formal public hearings are undertaken, Members felt that more consideration was needed to enable young people’s voices to be heard, such as use of video links and holding meetings at more convenient times.  Whilst it was suggested that the Scrutiny Board may wish to raise such matters directly with the Planning Inspectorate, it was noted that the scope of opportunity to bring in the voice of young people could also be linked to the Council’s own forthcoming review of the Core Strategy, including a refresh of the Council’s Statement of Community Involvement.  ...  view the full minutes text for item 96.

97.

Work Schedule pdf icon PDF 309 KB

To consider the report of the Head of Governance and Scrutiny Support regarding the Scrutiny Board’s work schedule for the 2018/19 municipal year and outline proposals for the 2019/20 municipal year.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Head of Governance and Scrutiny Support submitted a report regarding the Scrutiny Board’s work schedule for the 2018/19 municipal year and outline proposals for the 2019/20 municipal year.

 

The Principal Scrutiny Adviser introduced the report and outlined the areas within the report and associated work schedule.  In relation to the Scrutiny Board’s Inquiry this year, Members were informed that the Board’s draft  Inquiry report would be circulated for approval during May, and then presented formally to the successor Board at the first meeting of the 2019/20 municipal year in June 2019.  Whilst acknowledging that the Inquiry report will be used as a key reference document to help shape the work programme of the successor Board, the Chair highlighted that the proposed work schedule set out in Appendix 3 will be amended to also reflect the suggested areas of work raised during this meeting. Linked to this, a Board Member put forward a further suggestion that internal exclusions also be added to the proposed work schedule for 2019/20.

 

The Chair thanked all Board Members and the officers for their contributions and support throughout the year.

 

RESOLVED –

 

a)  That the overall work schedule as presented at Appendix 1 be agreed.

b)  That the draft work schedule as presented at Appendix 3 be agreed, subject to the amendments set out above.

 

 

98.

Date and Time of Next Meeting

To be confirmed.

Minutes:

The precise time and date of the June 2019 meeting was to be confirmed at a later date.

 

(The meeting concluded at 1.20 pm)