Agenda and minutes

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No. Item




Apologies for absence were received from Councillor Alan Collins, Alison Regester (Pre-School Settings and Early Years Representative), and Mary Capon (Church of England Representative). 




There were no additional declarations of interest.



Additional documents:


In advance of the meeting the Chairman had circulated a draft report for the Committees consideration.  At the start of the meeting the Chairman explained that the majority of the draft report was descriptive, reflecting the statistical, written and verbal evidence that had been gathered at the meeting on 23rd March 2017.


In addition to the minutes of the meeting held on 23rd March 2017, and the skeleton draft report, the Select Committee also had before it two further documents: (1) written evidence from Bromley Youth Council setting out the Youth Council’s view on why young people were not attending school; and (2) a report from the Head Teacher, Bromley Virtual School detailing information surrounding the 16+ CLA NEET Cohort.


The Education Select Committee considered the recommendations that it would like to put forward following its meeting on 23rd March 2017.


Turning to page 2, Paragraph 3.3, in relation to caseloads within the Youth Offending Service (YOS), a Member queried whether 12-15 cases per practitioner was considered to be a suitable caseload.  The Executive Director for Education, Care and Health Services responded that in his opinion, this level of caseload was very good.  The YOS had recently undergone an inspection and the Inspectors had not raised caseloads as an issue.  In response to a question from the Chairman surrounding the quality of staff employed within the YOS the Portfolio Holder for Education and Children’s Services explained that following the previous Inspection in 2015, when the YOS had been judged inadequate, there had been a process of churn however the quality of staff within the Service was now improving and the Service was once again travelling in the right direction.


Members noted that the Education, Children and Families Select Committee would receive an update on the YOS at its meeting on 17th October 2017.


In relation to paragraph 6.8, timescales for reporting poor attendance and the removal of pupils from school rolls, the Chairman queried whether there should be a recommendation that the Local Authority was alerted more quickly when levels of absence initially caused schools concern.  It was noted that the current requirement was for absences to be reported when they reach 10 consecutive days or at the end of the year when attendance was below 90%.  One of the problems with these timescales was that a pupil could have a significant number of days off throughout the year, well below 90%, without actually reaching 10 consecutive days trigger meaning that the Local Authority may not be made aware of any potential safeguarding or child protection issues.  Whilst agreeing with the points raised by the Committee, the Executive Director for Education Care and Health Services (ECHS) stressed that any recommendation would carry with it a resource implication in terms of ensuring that there was sufficient capacity to respond to and follow up on the likely increase in referrals to the Local Authority if timescales were shortened.


Members felt that it was important that data surrounding poor  ...  view the full minutes text for item 50.




Report CSD17070


The Committee considered a report seeking recommendations from Members for items for consideration by the Education, Children and Families Select Committee in 2017/18.


The Terms of Reference for the Education, Children and Families Select Committee, which was due to be constituted at the Annual Council Meeting on 10th May 2017, were circulated to the Members present.  In addition to this, the Executive Director (ECHS) tabled a document setting out suggested areas for scrutiny.


The Committee agreed to recommend to Council that the Education Budget Sub-Committee be renamed Education, Children and Families Budget & Performance Monitoring Sub-Committee.  It was agreed that the membership of the Sub-Committee should comprise:


Cllr N. Bennett

Cllr A. Collins

Cllr N. Reddin

Cllr A. Wilkins

Mr Emmanuel Arbenser (Co-opted Member – Special Schools Parent Governor)


(Cllr N. Dykes to be approached regarding membership following the meeting)


It was also agreed that it be recommended that a representative from the Living in Care Council be sought as a Co-opted Member of the Education, Children and Families Select Committee.


Turing to the Work Programme for the Education, Children & Families Select Committee for the 2017/18 municipal year the Committee agreed to recommend the following:


At each meeting the Portfolio Holder for Education and Children’s Services to be scrutinised along with one of the following:


The Deputy Chief Executive and Executive Director for ECHS (bi annually)

The Director for Education (annually)

The Director for Children’s Social Care (annually)


Quarterly Monitoring Report and Monitoring Visits by Ofsted to be standing items on every agenda.


The following issues to form Substantive Items for scrutiny:


SEND Strategy – short breaks, SEN transport

Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAHMS)

Troubled Families/Early Intervention/Child Poverty

Early Years, Child minding and the 30 hour challenge


The following issues to form Short Items for scrutiny:


Permanent Exclusions: Prevention Strategy

Adult Education: Follow up to Ofsted

YOS/Youth Service Developments (in October 2017)


The following items to be delegated to the Education, Children and Families Budget and Performance Monitoring Sub-Committee:


Annual Adoption Agency Report

Annual Corporate Parenting Report

Annual Complaints Report

Sufficiency and commissioning of Children`s Services Placements

Private Fostering Annual report

Annual assurance report of the Statutory Director of Children`s Services

Audit report

Budget monitoring


Business plan and portfolio plan monitoring

Risk management

Business continuity


In addition to this, Pupil Place Planning would be dealt with by the  Pupil Place Planning Executive Working Group if required. 


Finally, the General Purposes and Licensing committee to be asked to undertake an annual review of Licensing – participation issues relating to children.


The Committee agreed that the Chairman and Vice-Chairman of the Education, Children & Families Select Committee, once formally appointed at Annual Council on 10th May 2017, should liaise with the Executive Director ECHS and the Clerk to the Select Committee to schedule items for specific meetings.


A Member queried whether there had been any further follow up of the response provided by Lord Nash to the concerns expressed by the Education Select Committee surrounding Elective  ...  view the full minutes text for item 51.

Prior to the close of the meeting, the Portfolio Holder for Education and Children’s Services reported that Ofsted were currently undertaking their Second Monitoring Visit.  The Portfolio Holder and the Committee expressed their thanks to the staff and management team for their tireless work in driving and delivering ongoing improvements within the Service.



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