Agenda and minutes

Informal, Children & Families Scrutiny Committee
Wednesday, 16th June, 2021 6.00 pm

Venue: Webcast - Remote Meeting. View directions

Contact: Charles Yankiah  (0161 474 3206)

Note: The face-to-face meeting of the Scrutiny Committee will no longer be taking place. It has been replaced with a meeting of members of the committee which will be held remotely. Members of the public are asked not to attend the Town Hall and to click on the link below to view the live webcast. 

Media

Items
No. Item

Chair's Announcements

On behalf of the Committee the Chair: -

 

·         Thanked the Councillors who had served on the Committee for 2020/2021 and expressed the Committee’s gratitude for all their hard work including the two Scrutiny Reviews that were held and for their contributions to the final report.

 

·         Welcomed the new and returning members to the Committee for 2021/22 and was looking forward to working with the Committee and the continued scrutiny and holding the Cabinet to account.

 

·         Congratulated Chris McLoughlin (Director of Children’s Services) who received an OBE in the Queen’s honours list.

 

·         Welcomed the new Director of Education, Tim Bowman to the meeting.

Additional documents:

1.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 145 KB

To approve as a correct record and sign the Minutes of the meeting held on 14 April 2021.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Minutes (copies of which had been circulated) of the meeting held on 14 April 2021 were approved as a correct record.

2.

Declarations of Interest

Councillors and officers to declare any interests which they have in any of the items on the agenda for the meeting.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Councillors and officers were invited to declare any interest which they had in any of the items on the agenda for the meeting.

 

No interests were declared.

3.

Call-In

To consider call-in items (if any).

Additional documents:

Minutes:

There were no call-in items to consider.

4.

Exclusion of the Public and the Public Interest Test

To consider whether it is in the public interest to exclude the public during consideration of Agenda Item 7 -  Health Visiting and School Nurses and Family Nurse Partnership which contains information ‘not for publication’ in the appendices by virtue of Category 5 ‘Information in respect of which a claim to legal professional privilege could be maintained in legal proceedings’ as set out in the Local Government Act 1972 (as amended)

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

RESOLVED – That in order to prevent the disclosure of information which was not for publication, the disclosure of which would not be in the public interest, the public be excluded from the meeting during consideration of any of the exempt information in Agenda Item 7 – ‘Health Visiting and School Nurses and Family Nurse Partnership’ should it be necessary for the Scrutiny Committee to consider and comment on these aspects of the report.

5.

Portfolio Performance and Resources - Annual Report 2020/21 pdf icon PDF 205 KB

To consider a joint report of the Corporate Director (Place) & Deputy Chief Executive and Corporate Director (Corporate & Support Services) & Deputy Chief Executive. 

 

The report provides a summary of progress in delivering the portfolio priorities, reform programme and other key projects since the final update report, with a focus on the fourth quarter of the year (January to March). It includes out-turn performance and financial data (where this is available) for the Portfolio, along with updates on the portfolio savings programme

 

The Scrutiny Committee is recommended to:-

 

·         Consider the Annual Portfolio Performance and Resource Report;

·         Review the progress against delivering key projects, priority outcomes, targets and budgets for 2017/18;

·         Highlight key areas of and responsibility for taking forward corrective action to address any performance or resource issues;

·         Highlight any significant issues or changes to be fed back to the Cabinet alongside the Corporate Performance and Resource Report;

·         Identify how areas of strong performance and good practice can be shared in other services.

 

Officer contact: Gaynor Ward, Strategy and Performance Manager

gaynor.ward@stockport.gov.uk  (474 3186)

 

Gill Dixon, CSS Manager (Specialist) Finance – Children’s Social Care

gill.dixon@stockport.gov.uk   (474 3886)

 

Peter Hughes, CSS Manager (Specialist) Finance – Education & Schools

peter.hughes@stockport.gov.uk   (474 3947)

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Corporate Director (Place) & the Deputy Chief Executive and the Corporate Director (Corporate & Support Services) and Deputy Chief Executive submitted a report (copies of which had been circulated) providing a summary of progress in delivering the portfolio priorities, reform programme and other key projects since the final update report, with a focus on the fourth quarter of the year (January to March). It includes out-turn performance and financial data (where this is available) for the Portfolio, along with updates on the portfolio savings programme.

 

The Cabinet Member for Children, Family Services & Education (Councillor Colin Foster) attended the meeting to respond to questions from the Scrutiny Committee.

 

The following comments were made/issues raised: -

 

Priority One

·         It was noted that in Priority One – Social and Emotional pathway development, that parents had reported a stigma regarding asking for help. In response, it was stated that most families felt embarrassed about asking for help as there was a stigma attached. Stockport was clear about building respectful relationships with children and families and helping with the universal provisions. Ongoing work continued with health visitor visits with every child and baby with a number of examples from last year due to the pandemic where parents have now asked for help due to the environment and relationships being created.

 

Priority Two

·         A further subset of information was requested relating to SEND pupils in Priority Two (CFSE 25 – CFSE 29) to be shared with the Committee for future monitoring purposes.

·         Clarification was sought on the ‘catch up money’ from Government referred to in Priority Two – “School Effectiveness” and when and how much was expected. In response it was noted that most of the ‘catch up money’ was directed to the school’s and it was up to the school’s within the Government framework to spend that money accordingly. It was also stated that the monies were paid twice last year, with any monies that was leftover being rolled over to this year due to the timeframes involved during the pandemic. Work was currently underway with schools to define the priorities for the borough going forward for the next 3-5 years and feedback from schools would be sought relating to the priorities and its framework.

·         Clarification was sought regarding the borough’s preparations for reception children. In response, it was stated that lots of work had been done across Greater Manchester to help schools think about the Year 1 curriculum and approach. It was noted that last year there was a huge effort in terms of transition to secondary schools and has now risen to the top of the agenda for transitional situation for children.

 

 

 

Priority Four

·         Regarding Priority Four – CFSE50, the Children in Care per 10,000, 0-17 year olds has provided a figure of 59, can this be explained. In response, it was stated that this figure was the actual rate and not the actual figure, but in future the actual figure would also be included.

 

RESOLVED – That the report be noted.

 

6.

Portfolio Performance and Resources - Draft Portfolio Agreement 2021/22 pdf icon PDF 271 KB

To consider a joint report of the Corporate Director (Place) & Deputy Chief Executive and Corporate Director (Corporate & Support Services) & Deputy Chief Executive. 

 

Policy priorities for 2021/22 were set out within the Council Plan, which was adopted at the Budget Council Meeting in February. This incorporates the shared outcomes from the Borough Plan alongside specific priorities of the Cabinet.  

 

These priorities, re-shaped to take account of One Stockport and Building Back Better (building on Covid19), are articulated within the Portfolio Agreements, which form the basis for regular in-year reporting. Portfolio and Corporate Performance and Resource Reports (PPRRs and CPRRs) will assess progress against key objectives, priorities, outcomes and budgets, enabling Scrutiny Committees to hold the Cabinet to account and for the Cabinet to identify current and future risks to delivery. 

 

This report presents the draft 2021/22 Agreements for the Citizen Focus and

Engagement and Resources, Commissioning and Governance Portfolios for

consideration and comment by the Committee.

 

The Scrutiny Committee is recommended to review and comment on the draft Portfolio Agreements.

 

Officer contact: Gaynor Ward, Strategy and Performance Manager

gaynor.ward@stockport.gov.uk  (474 3186)

 

Gill Dixon, CSS Manager (Specialist) Finance – Children’s Social Care

gill.dixon@stockport.gov.uk   (474 3886)

 

Peter Hughes, CSS Manager (Specialist) Finance – Education & Schools

peter.hughes@stockport.gov.uk   (474 3947)

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Corporate Director (Place) & Deputy Chief Executive and Corporate Director (Corporate & Support Services) & Deputy Chief Executive submitted a report (copies of which had been circulated) detailing the draft 2020/21 agreements for the Citizen Focus and Engagement and Resources, Commissioning and Governance portfolios for consideration by the Scrutiny Committee.

 

The agreements articulated the policy priorities for 2021/22 that were set out within the adopted Council Plan , incorporating the shared outcomes from the Borough Plan alongside specific priorities of the Cabinet. These priorities, re-shaped to take account of One Stockport and Building Back Better (building on Covid19), are articulated within the Portfolio Agreements, which form the basis for regular in-year reporting.

 

The Cabinet Member for Children, Family Services & Education (Councillor Colin Foster) attended the meeting to respond to questions from the Scrutiny Committee.

 

The following comments were made/issues raised: -

 

·         Clarification was sought regarding ‘Earmarked Reserves’ and the ‘Balance of Reserve’ figure of £794,000 for SEND – Written Statement of Action. In response, it was stated that this amount was drawn down to respond to the actions following the CQC Inspection and the SEND area inspection. It was to do the strategic work e.g. the formation of the single point of access for wellbeing and the work undertaken to establish it in April 2021.

·         Clarification was also sought regarding ‘Performance Measures and Targets’ – CFSE11 and how it compared to regional and national targets and how attainable was the 78.8%. In response, it was stated that three secondary schools which had been inspected in September 2019 and were categorised as being ‘Inadequate’ under the new Ofsted regime. However, since March 2020 there have been no other inspections due to the pandemic and the inspections being frozen. It was also stated that the figures and percentage was a reflection of two or three schools improving that would affect the overall target. There would also have been some incremental changes had the Ofsted regime continued. It was also noted that the comparative information would be provided to the Committee.

·         Clarification was sought regarding ‘Performance Measures and Targets’ – CFSE12(ii) and what the reasons were for the reduction. In response, it was noted that a written response would be provided to the Committee.

 

RESOLVED – That the report be noted.

7.

Health Visiting and School Nurses and Family Nurse Partnership pdf icon PDF 170 KB

To consider a report of the Director of Children’s Services.

 

The report provides details to ensure the Committee are sighted on the extension until 31 March 2022 of the contract between the Council and Stockport NHS Foundation Trust in relation to the provision of health visiting, school nursing and Family Nurse Partnership services and also describes an indicative timeline of the next steps, to ensure that Stockport continues to receive a high quality service, new policy guidance is incorporated into the service and disruption to business is minimised.

 

(NOTE: This item included a ‘not for publication’ appendix that had been circulated to members of the Scrutiny Committee only).

 

 

The Scrutiny Committee is asked to note the report.

 

Officer contact: Carolyn Anderson, Carolyn.anderson@stockport.gov.uk

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Director of Children’s Services submitted a report (copies of which had been circulated) providing details to ensure the Committee were sighted on the extension until 31 March 2022 of the contract between the Council and Stockport NHS Foundation Trust in relation to the provision of health visiting, school nursing and Family Nurse Partnership services and also describes an indicative timeline of the next steps, to ensure that Stockport continues to receive a high quality service, new policy guidance is incorporated

into the service and disruption to business is minimised.

 

The Cabinet Member for Children, Family Services & Education (Councillor Colin Foster) attended the meeting to respond to questions from the Scrutiny Committee.

 

The Chair commented that the work done by the Family Nurse Partnership was quite impressive and prevented a number of young people from going into care.

 

RESOLVED – (1) That the report be noted.

 

(2) Cabinet be recommended to approve the extension to 2022.

8.

Woodford Development - New School Governance Decision pdf icon PDF 369 KB

To consider a report of the Deputy Chief Executive and Director of Children's Services.

 

The report outlines the 2 options available to the local authority regarding the management and governance of the new school.

 

The Scrutiny Committee is asked to note the report and to make recommendations to the Cabinet as appropriate.

 

Officer contact: Geraldine Gerard, 0161 474 3837, geraldine.gerrard@stockport.gov.uk

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Deputy Chief Executive and Director of Children's Services submitted a report (copies of which had been circulated) outlining the two options available to the local authority regarding the management and governance of the new school.

 

The Cabinet Member for Children, Family Services & Education (Councillor Colin Foster) attended the meeting to respond to questions from the Scrutiny Committee.

 

The following comments were made/issues raised: -

 

·         There was a discussion regarding the draft report previously circulated to the Governors of Queensgate School before local ward councillors and the Scrutiny Committee.

·         Clarification was sought regarding the number of children that had applied to Queensgate in 2021 and how many places were offered. In response, it was stated that 176 applications for Queensgate were made and 30 places were allocated up to national offer day. In the lead up to national offer day discussions with the Governing Body and Headteacher had taken place regarding flexible arrangements to take the offer up to 45. It was also stated that further work was being undertaken regarding pupil projections across the borough while ensuring the commissioning of new places would not undermine existing schools or places.

·         Clarification was sought regarding the costs of the highway mitigation to get children from Bramhall to Woodford. It was commented that the work had not been done in the process as the considerations at this time were only the options contained in the report.

·         It was commented that the Woodford Garden Village was not geared up for the highway network that would be generated twice a day. In response, it was stated that there would need to be a travel impact assessment for both options that would be provided in due course. It was also noted that in the Section 106 agreement that the developer has agreed to employ a person to look at the needs and the infrastructure.

·         It was noted that in order to make the area safe for the children who would be walking and/or taking a bus or car would be quite costly and needs to be considered.

·         There was a discussion regarding the 750 houses being proposed by Redrow and the 920 houses included in the report. It was noted that certain information could not be included in the report regarding any further developments.

·         Clarification was sought on the length of the consultation and when it could be opened in 2022. In response, it was reported that it was not a long consultation relating to the importance of the decision to be made, but will take it into account.

·         It was commented that there was a planning decision taken in 2014 with comments made by the then Head of Education. In response, it was noted that a school will be opened on the site and would be delivered and it was important to listen to local councillors, officers, local community and schools.

·         Clarification was sought regarding paragraph 4.19 and the reference to “a small number of current pupils will have to travel over 3 miles to get to the new site”. In response, it was stated that a written response would be provided to the Committee.

·         It was commented that the report provided a start of the formal process with the options being established and what needs to be worked through. It was also stated that once it is established what Queensgate want to do, that engagement should involve local councillors going forward.

·         Clarification was sought regarding paragraph 2.1 and the reference to “the Section 106 agreement to ensure that the school is available in for the academic year when the 450th unit is occupied”. In response, it was stated that the school would be available from June 2022.

·         Clarification was sought regarding when the decision was taken relating to Queensgate and the two options. In response, it was stated that a decision had not been taken as there were only two options and  ...  view the full minutes text for item 8.

9.

Update on Children's Services Transformation pdf icon PDF 433 KB

To consider a report of the Director of Children’s Services.

 

The report provides an update on the progress and implementation of the children’s services transformation and integration programme.  This is a programme of transformational change to put children and families at the heart of service delivery; to realise the Stockport One borough plan with an emphasis on prevention, early help, strengths and asset-based approaches, community capacity building and neighbourhood working and as such draw demand downstream giving the greatest potential for meeting needs earlier and resultant reduction in spend.

 

The Scrutiny Committee is asked to note the report.

 

Officer contact: Carolyn Anderson, Carolyn.anderson@stockport.gov.uk

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Director of Children’s Services submitted a report (copies of which had been circulated) providing an update on the progress and implementation of the children’s services transformation and integration programme.

 

The Cabinet Member for Children, Family Services & Education (Councillor Colin Foster) attended the meeting to respond to questions from the Scrutiny Committee.

 

The following comments were made/issues raised: -

 

·         Clarification was sought regarding paragraph 3.6 and the plans for the shared services and how the Pupil Referral Unit would be re-framed. In response, it was stated that to date a Working Group has been established to look at the shared services and the Committee would be kept up to date with any developments. It was also noted that there was a public consultation in 2020, following which work has been undertaken with headteachers and stakeholders on the options going forward.

·         It was commented that the proposed changes to the Pupil Referral Unit should be reported back to the Scrutiny Committee at a future meeting.

 

RESOLVED – (1) That the report be noted

 

(2) That a report relating to the proposed changes to the Pupil Referral Unit be submitted to a future meeting of the Scrutiny Committee.

10.

Update on Leisure and Sports Activities available for Children and Young People with a Disability or Specific Need in Stockport pdf icon PDF 346 KB

To consider a report of the Director for Children’s Services.

 

The report provides an update on recent and planned support for SEND children, young people and families to access leisure and sports provision. It also outlines the developmental support to enable SEND families to be more active within their daily routines.

 

The Scrutiny Committee is asked to –

 

·         Note the report

·         Endorse the ongoing support to children and young people with SEND, and their families, to be more active and therefore also contribute to the wider Preparing for Adulthood core outcomes.

·         Endorse the proposed recommendations to both further improve the access to, and experience of, engagement and participation for children and young people with SEND.

 

Officer contact: Russ Boaler, 0161 474 3941, russ.boaler@stockport.gov.uk

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Director for Children’s Services submitted a report (copies of which had been circulated)  providing an update on recent and planned support for SEND children, young people and families to access leisure and sports provision and also outlined the developmental support to enable SEND families to be more active within their daily routines.

 

The Cabinet Member for Children, Family Services & Education (Councillor Colin Foster) attended the meeting to respond to questions from the Scrutiny Committee.

 

The Committee welcomed the report and reflected on the level of activities, the development of activities for SEND and young people to access and the level of details contained within the report.

 

RESOLVED – (1) That the report be noted.

 

(2) That the proposed recommendations be endorsed.

11.

Work Programme and Agenda Planning pdf icon PDF 134 KB

To consider a report of the Strategic Head of Service & Monitoring Officer (Legal & Democratic Governance).  

 

The Scrutiny Committee is invited to give consideration to possible topics for further consideration during the 2021/22 municipal year. Suggestions will be considered and subject to a further decision at the next meeting in July 2021 when the Scrutiny Committee will be invited to make a formal recommendation to the Scrutiny Co-ordination Committee as part of the Scrutiny Work Programme.

 

The Scrutiny Committee is invited to consider the information in the report and put forward any agenda items for future meetings of the Committee.

 

Officer contact: Charles Yankiah on 0161 474 3206 or email: Charles.yankiah@stockport.gov.uk  

Additional documents:

Minutes:

A representative of the Strategic Head of Service & Monitoring Officer (Legal & Democratic Governance) submitted a report (copies of which had been circulated) setting out the planned agenda items for the Scrutiny Committee’s next meeting and any Forward Plan items.

 

The Chair proposed that an update on the improvements and plans to address the concerns raised relating to accessing information for those with  ‘mental health issues’ raised by the Stockport College – Equalities Council and the recommendations proposed by the Scrutiny Review be submitted to a future meeting of the Committee.

 

Councillor Senior proposed that the ‘Bullying Update’ also include information and an analysis relating to the situation in Stockport regarding ‘sexism and misogyny in schools’ and also an update on Post 16 routes into apprenticeships and the destination of young people and what the authority was doing.

 

RESOLVED – (1) That the report be noted.

 

(2) That the Strategic Head of Service & Monitoring Officer (Legal & Democratic Governance) be recommended to programme the following items into the Scrutiny Committee’s work programme for the 2021/22 Municipal Year:-

 

·         A report on the improvements and plans to address the concerns raised relating to accessing information for those with  ‘mental health issues’ raised by the Stockport College – Equalities Council and the recommendations proposed by the Scrutiny Review Panel.

 

·         That the ‘Bullying Update’ or a separate report be submitted to include information and an analysis relating to the situation in Stockport regarding ‘sexism and misogyny in schools.

 

·         An update on Post-16 routes into apprenticeships and the destination of young people and what the authority was doing to support this process.