Agenda, decisions and minutes

Schools Forum
Wednesday, 15th September, 2021 8.00 am

Contact: Asad Shah - 01274 432280 

Items
No. Item

571.

APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE

The City Solicitor will report the names of alternate Members who are attending the meeting in place of appointed Members.

 

 

Minutes:

 

Note: These minutes are subject to approval as a correct record at the next meeting of the Schools Forum on 13 October 2021

Schools Forum meeting held remotely on Wednesday 15 September 2021

 

To view the archived recording of this meeting, please see here:

https://bradford.public-i.tv/core/portal/webcast_interactive/599941


Commenced 0805, Adjourned 0940

Reconvened 0950, Concluded 1020

 

RECORD OF MEETING ATTENDEES, APOLOGIES AND ABSENCES

 

Schools & Academies Members

 

IN ATTENDANCE

Member

Membership Group

Dianne Richardson (Chair)

Maintained Primary Schools - Headteacher

Ian Morrel (Vice Chair)

Maintained Secondary Schools – Headteacher

Brent Fitzpatrick OBE

Academies Member

Heather Lacey

Academies Member

Helen Williams

Academies Member

Mathew Atkinson

Academies Member

Michael Thorp

Academies Member

Tehmina Hashmi

Academies Member

Victoria Birch

Academies Member

Wahid Zaman

Academies Member

Richard Bottomley

Academies Member – Alternative Provision Academies

Dominic Wall

Academies Member – Special School Academies

Bev George

Maintained Nursery Schools – Governor

Sian Hudson

Maintained Nursery Schools – Headteacher

Kathryn Swales

Maintained Primary Schools - Headteacher

Nicky Kilvington

Maintained Primary Schools - Headteacher

Sara Rawnsley

Maintained Primary Schools - Headteacher

Lyndsey Brown

Maintained Special Schools - Headteacher

Kirsty Ratcliffe

Pupil Referral Unit (maintained)

 

APOLOGIES RECEIVED

Member

Membership Group

Ashley Reed

Academies Member

Carol Dewhirst OBE

Academies Member

Emma Hamer

Maintained Primary Schools – Governor

Graham Swinbourne

Maintained Primary Schools - Headteacher

NOT IN ATTENDANCE (WITHOUT APOLOGIES RECEIVED)

Member

Membership Group

Andrew Morley

Academies Member

Deborah Howarth

Academies Member

Sir Nick Weller

Academies Member

Bryan Harrison

Maintained Primary Schools - Headteacher

 

Non-Schools Members

 

IN ATTENDANCE

Member

Membership Group

Irfan Alam

Officer Representing Vulnerable Children

Gillian Simpson-Morris

Representative of Early Years PVI Members

Tom Bright

Teaching Unions

 

APOLOGIES RECEIVED

Member

Membership Group

 

 

 

NOT IN ATTENDANCE (WITHOUT APOLOGIES RECEIVED)

Member

Membership Group

Donna Willoughby

Non-Teaching Unions

Junaid Karim

Council for Mosques (Bradford)

 

Substitute Members present at the meeting as a Member (not as an Observer)

 

Substitute Member

Membership Group

 

 

 

Substitute Members present at the meeting as an Observer (not as a Member)

 

Substitute Member

Membership Group

Alison Kaye

Academies Member

 

Local Authority Officers present at the meeting

 

Officer

Position

Andrew Redding

Business Advisor (Schools)

Asad Shah

Committee Secretariat

Marium Haque

Deputy Director, Education and Learning

Raj Singh

Business Advisor (Children’s Services)

Dawn Haigh

Principal Finance Officer (Schools)

Jonty Holden

Principal Finance Officer (Schools)

Niall Devlin

Strategic Manager, Integrated Assessment (item 11)

 

Recorded Observers

 

Name

Cllr M Pollard

 

 

40% of the School Forum’s membership (filled membership positions) must be present for a meeting to be quorate. This meeting was quorate, with 68% of members present (22 out of 32 currently filled membership positions).

 

572.

DISCLOSURES OF INTEREST

To receive disclosures of interests from Members on matters to be considered at the meeting. The disclosure must include the nature of the interest.

 

An interest must also be disclosed in the meeting when it only becomes apparent to the member during the meeting.

 

 

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest.

 

 

573.

MINUTES OF 7 JULY 2021 & MATTERS ARISING pdf icon PDF 155 KB

That the minutes of the meeting held on 7 July 2021 be signed as a correct record.

 

 

Minutes:

The Business Advisor (Schools) reported on progress made on “Action” items from the 7 July meeting:

 

·         Item 561 Chair and Vice Chair Nominations / Elections: The agreed process for the collection of nominations was completed. The only nominations put forward were for Dianne Richardson as Chair and for Ian Morrel as Vice Chair. As a result, an election was not required. Dianne and Ian continue in their positions for the 2021/22 academic year. The Business Advisor explained that the Authority will wish to talk to the Forum about appropriate Chair hand-over arrangements soon within the coming year (as Dianne has stated that she will be retiring from the Schools Forum in July 2022).

 

·         Item 562 Schools Forum Membership: An update on this matter is provided under agenda item 6.

 

·         Item 563 DSG Outturn Balances: The agreed Central Schools Services Block to Schools Block balances adjustment has been actioned. The Forum will receive, in December, a report on 2021/22 spending and forecasted March 2022 balances by block.

 

·         Item 565 SLT Review: The Speech and Language Therapy High Needs Block budget adjustment has been actioned.

 

·         Item 566 Early Years Block: The Business Advisor reported thatthe spring term 2021 Early Years Single Funding Formula (EYSFF) adjustments have been fully actioned. The Authority has also now confirmed summer 2021 EYSFF funding with providers. The Authority submitted the required additional return to the DfE to facilitate the adjusted Early Years Block methodology for the summer term. The Authority is now preparing for the autumn term EYSFF processes, which will be based on the October Census. An update on the forecasted position of spending and pressure within the Early Years Block in 2021/22 will be presented to the Schools Forum in December. Introductory discussion on the EYSFF for 2022/23 is presented under agenda item 9.

 

·         Item 568 Formula Funding Development 2022/23: An update on this is presented under agenda items 8 and 9.

 

The Business Advisor (Schools) reported on a number of additional matters arising:

 

·         Following the discussion and feedback provided in the July Forum meeting, subject to conditions and facilities, we are looking to establish a form of ‘hybrid’ approach to Schools Forum meetings, where we would have a mixture of meetings held remotely and face-to-face (in attendance at City Hall). A possible approach will be for the more ‘substantial’ meetings (where decisions are needed or where more detailed DSG discussion is anticipated) to be held in attendance, and for the meetings, which are more about information, update and awareness, to be held remotely. This may mean that, typically, we would look to hold in attendance meetings at City Hall in October, December and January, and that the other meetings in the normal calendar (September, March, May and July) would be held remotely, subject to conditions and facilities. The Schools Forum indicated its support for this approach to meetings in the 2021/22 academic year.

 

·         As we have done in previous years, the Authority would like to warn primary-phase maintained school representatives that, because  ...  view the full minutes text for item 573.

574.

MATTERS RAISED BY SCHOOLS

Members will be asked to consider any issues raised by schools.

Minutes:

No matters were raised.

 

No resolutions were passed on this item.

 

 

575.

STANDING ITEM - DSG GROWTH FUND ALLOCATIONS

There are no allocations for consideration at this meeting.  

 

 

Minutes:

No allocations were presented.

 

No resolutions were passed on this item.

 

 

576.

SCHOOLS FORUM MEETINGS & MEMBERSHIP - UPDATE pdf icon PDF 97 KB

The Business Advisor (Schools) will present a report, Document NF, which follows from the report presented to the July meeting (Document MZ) and provides a further update on Schools Forum membership.

 

Appendix 1 presents the Forum’s full current membership at September 2021, following the recent recruitment processes.

 

As there a number of new members attending the Forum for the first time, this report also reminds members of the Forum’s statutory powers (Appendix 2) and highlights how the Forum makes resolutions and takes decisions.

 

Recommended –

 

The Schools Forum is asked to consider and to note the information presented.

 

         (Andrew Redding – 01274 432678)

 

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Chair welcomed new members to the Schools Forum.

 

The Business Advisor (Schools) presented Document NF, which provides an update from the 7 July meeting on Schools Forum membership. Appendix 1 presents a full list of the membership that is in place at September 2021. The Business Advisor explained that, as a number of new members are attending the Forum at this meeting for the first time, in advance of an induction (which is shortly to be arranged), it is helpful in the report to set out the Forum’s roles, responsibilities and powers and also to explain how the Forum makes its recommendations and takes decisions.

 

The Vice Chair added to the report to emphasise that a key activity of Forum members is to communicate with their respective sectors, so that important information is shared and also so that the views of their sectors can be expressed back to the Forum as well as back to the Local Authority, through the Schools Forum.

 

Forum members did not ask any questions and did not have any further comments on the report.

 

Resolved –

 

That the information presented in Document NF be noted.

 

LEAD:            BUSINESS ADVISOR (SCHOOLS)

 

 

577.

'HARD' NATIONAL FUNDING FORMULA - DFE CONSULTATION pdf icon PDF 111 KB

The Principal Finance Officer (Schools) will present a report, Document NG, which presents the DfE’s consultation on the proposed transition towards the ‘hard’ National Funding Formula, which was published on 8 July 2021.

 

The report at Appendix 2 also presents the Authority’s proposed response to this consultation. The Forum is asked to consider whether it wishes to support the Authority’s response or to submit its own response.

 

Recommended -

 

(a)       The Schools Forum is asked to consider the implications of the DfE’s movement to ‘hard’ National Funding Formula and to note the information provided in the report.

 

(b)       The Forum is asked to consider whether it wishes to support the Authority’s response or to submit its own response to the DfE’s consultation.

        

(Jonty Holden – 01274 431927)

 

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Principal Finance Officer (Schools) presented Document NG, which summarises how the DfE proposes, in its most recent stage of consultation, to complete its ‘hard’ National Funding Formula reforms. The Principal Finance Officer highlighted for Forum members the main risks that these reforms present, from April 2023, and asked the Forum to support the Authority’s drafted formal response, presented at Appendix 2.

 

The Forum gave its support to the Authority’s proposed response. Members discussed how the matters covered by the DfE’s consultation can best be drawn to the attention of colleagues in schools and academies, whilst also providing the opportunity for colleagues either to add to the Authority’s response or to submit their own responses directly to the DfE. Members discussed how this could potentially be co-ordinated. It was agreed that Authority’s proposed response be published on Bradford Schools Online, with the aims of encouraging awareness and to provide the opportunity for schools and academies either to comment on (or add to) the Authority’s response or to submit their own responses before the 30 September deadline.

 

Resolved –

 

1)         That the implications of the DfE’s proposed movement to the ‘hard’ National Funding Formula, as presented in Document NG, be noted.

 

2)         That the Schools Forum supports the Authority’s proposed response to the DfE’s consultation, as presented in Document NG Appendix 2.

 

3)         That the Authority’s proposed response is published on Bradford Schools Online, with the aims of encouraging awareness and to provide the opportunity for schools and academies either to comment on (or add to) the Authority’s response or to submit their own responses before the 30 September deadline.

 

ACTION:       PRINCIPAL FINANCE OFFICER (SCHOOLS)

578.

2022/23 DSG & FORMULA FUNDING ANNOUNCEMENTS - BRIEFING pdf icon PDF 96 KB

The Business Advisor (Schools) will present Document NH (Appendices 1 and 2), which provides a briefing on the 2022/23 Dedicated Schools Grant settlement and formula funding arrangements, following the DfE’s announcement on 19 July 2021.

 

This report provides important background for the development of our formula funding arrangements for 2022/23.

 

Recommended –

 

The Schools Forum is asked to note the information presented and to begin to consider the implications for the 2022/23 DSG budget planning round and formula funding arrangements.

 

         (Andrew Redding – 01274 432678)

 

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Business Advisor (Schools) presented Documents NH Appendix 1 and Appendix 2, which summarise the announcements that have been made over the summer, on 2022/23 Dedicated Schools Grant (DSG) allocations and formula funding arrangements, and which explain the main implications for Bradford.

 

The Business Advisor emphasised that the 2022/23 Early Years Block settlement and formula funding arrangements are still to be announced and that the position of the protected funding of maintained nursery schools from April 2022 is still unclear.

 

The Business Advisor explained that the net reduction in pupil numbers across the District, forecasted as a consequence of demographic trends in particular at this time for early years providers, primary schools and primary academies, is a strongly emerging theme for Bradford’s Dedicated Schools Grant. As well as having implications for the funding levels of individual early years providers, schools and academies, the forecasted net reduction in pupil numbers will have consequences for the amount of budget ‘headroom’ that is available for the Authority to deploy within the DSG going forward in support of formula funding arrangements and other cost pressures.

 

The Business Advisor briefly explained how the Authority currently is seeking to work with schools, individual academies and Multi Academy Trusts, within planning areas across the District, to manage adjustments to PANs (Published Admission Numbers) in response to reducing primary-phase pupil numbers. The Authority is seeking to manage these adjustments in a collaborative way, to support the financial security of all schools and academies in the relevant planning area. The Business Advisor explained that it will be helpful to the Authority for the Schools Forum to give its support to the collaborative approach that the Authority is trying to achieve. The Business Advisor asked whether the Forum could formally resolve to give this support at this meeting.

 

The Forum’s discussion on this agenda item concentrated on this request. Forum members asked the following main questions and made the following main comments:

 

·         Whether all admissions applications still to be admitted will be placed in time for the October 2021 Census? The Deputy Director, Education and Learning responded that the Authority is working hard to place these applications and that the position is much as it has been in recent years. There has again been a large number of late applications, which are currently being processed. The Academies Member, who asked the initial question, asked whether more specific information on outstanding applications could be provided so that schools can help maximise the number of placements that are secured before the October Census is taken. The Deputy Director responded that she will discuss this request with the Strategic Manager, Pupil Admissions.

·         The Vice Chair asked that the Authority provides the Forum with a strategic level overview of PAN management. He explained that this would help the Forum engage with this matter. Some modelling (at a strategic level) of the ‘double’ impact that the reduction in pupil numbers may have going forward, alongside the continued growth in the levels of need  ...  view the full minutes text for item 578.

579.

OUTLINE - FORMULA FUNDING ARRANGEMENTS & CONSULTATIONS 2022/23 pdf icon PDF 171 KB

The Business Advisor (Schools) will present a report, Document NI, which outlines the working principles that are being considered in the development of Bradford’s formula funding arrangements for 2022/23. The Authority anticipates presenting consultation reports to the Schools Forum at the next meeting, with these consultations being published immediately after. However, Members are asked to note that the consultation on early years entitlement funding arrangements may be delayed due to the timing of the announcement of the Early Years Block settlement and operational guidance.

 

Responses to consultations are expected to be considered by the Forum at its December meeting. The Schools Forum will then be required to make its final recommendations on 2022/23 DSG and formula funding arrangements at its January 2022 meeting.

 

In support of these processes:

 

Forum Members are invited to (remotely) attend a ‘Formula Funding Working Group’ session, on Tuesday 28 September (8am), Wednesday 29 September (8am) or Tuesday 5 October (8am). As in previous years, these sessions will enable Forum Members to consider in more detail the impact of national formula funding decisions and to explore and to guide the proposals for 2022/23 for Bradford’s Schools and High Needs Block formula funding arrangements that are anticipated will be set out for consultation in October. These FFWG sessions will incorporate considerations relating to the Schools Block Falling Rolls Fund.

 

The Authority is currently convening the Early Years Working Group to consider more closely our early years entitlement funding arrangements for 2022/23 in advance of the DfE’s Early Years Block announcements. Interested Forum members are invited to attend this group.

 

The Authority will contact the District Achievement Partnership to arrange to discuss directly the proposals for the continuation of the EHCP Banded Model (the special school funding formula) for 2022/23.

           

Recommended –

 

(1)       The Schools Forum is asked to consider and to comment on the working principles.

 

(2)       Members are invited to attend a ‘Formula Funding Working Group’ session.

 

(3)       Members are invited to attend the Early Years Working Group.

 

(4)       The Authority will discuss the proposals for the continuation of the EHCP Banded Model (the special school funding formula) for 2022/23 directly with the District Achievement Partnership.

 

(5)       Members are asked for feedback on how best to communicate as early as possible this term with schools and other providers about arrangements for 2022/23 (in advance of more formal consultation beginning in October).

 

         (Andrew Redding – 01274 432678)

 

 

Minutes:

The Business Advisor (Schools) presented Document NI. He explained that the purpose of this report is to ‘warm the Forum up’ to key formula funding proposals that are likely to be put forward for 2022/23 in response to the DfE’s summer announcements. The Authority currently plans to follow the timetable and approach to consultation and decision making that has worked well in previous years, but this is subject to the timing of the outstanding announcements on Early Years Block arrangements.

 

The Business Advisor reminded members of their opportunity to attend a Formula Funding Working Group meeting to discuss the Schools Block proposals in more detail in advance of the next Schools Forum meeting to be held on 13 October. He also asked for expressions of interest to attend the Early Years Working Group.

 

Forum members did not ask any questions and did not have any comments at this stage on this report.

 

Resolved –

 

1)         That the information presented in Document NI be noted.

 

2)         That Forum Members are invited to attend a ‘Formula Funding Working Group’ session.

 

3)         That Forum Members are invited to express their interests in attending the Early Years Working Group.

 

ACTION:       BUSINESS ADVISOR (SCHOOLS)

 

 

580.

WORK PROGRAMME AND SCHEDULE OF MEETINGS 2021/22 ACADEMIC YEAR pdf icon PDF 92 KB

The Business Advisor (Schools) will present a report, Document NJ, which outlines the School Forum’s 2021/22 Academic Year work programme.

           

Recommended –

 

The Forum is asked to note the proposed programme and to consider whether any additional items should be added.

 

         (Andrew Redding – 01274 432678)

 

 

Minutes:

The Business Advisor (Schools) presented Document NJ, which is the Forum’s drafted schedule of meetings and planned business for the 2021/22 academic year.

 

Referring to the discussion earlier in the meeting, the Chair asked for clarification that the work programme includes regular consideration of matters related to the impact of reducing pupil numbers in schools. The Business Advisor confirmed that this matter was included in the programme each term.

 

Forum members did not have any further comments.

 

Resolved –

 

That the programme presented in Document NJ be noted.

 

LEAD:            BUSINESS ADVISOR (SCHOOLS)

 

 

581.

SCHOOLS FORUM STANDING ITEMS

Updates on the following Forum standing items will be provided verbally where these have not been covered within other agenda items:

·         Schools Forum membership

·         Update from the High Needs Block Steering Group

·         Update from the Schools Financial Performance Group (SFPG)

·         Update on School / Academy Budgets

·         Update from the Early Years Working Group (EYWG)

·         Update from the Formula Funding Working Group (FFWG)

·         Update on Primary School Places

·         Update on Academies & Free Schools

 

The Forum is asked to note the information provided.

 

         (Andrew Redding – 01274 432678)

 

 

Minutes:

No further updates were provided.

 

No resolutions were passed on this item.

 

 

582.

AOB / FUTURE AGENDA ITEMS

Members will be asked for any additional items of business, for consideration at a future meeting.

 

 

Minutes:

No AOB items were raised.

 

No resolutions were passed on this item.

583.

DATE OF NEXT MEETING

Minutes:

The next Forum meeting is planned for Wednesday 13 October 2021.

 

The scheduled of meetings for the 2021/22 academic year is as follows:

 

·         Wednesday 13 October 2021, 8am

·         Wednesday 8 December 2021, 8am

·         Wednesday 12 January 2022, 8am

·         Wednesday 19 January 2022, 8am PROVISIONAL MEETING

·         Wednesday 9 March 2022, 8am

·         Wednesday 18 May 2022, 8am

·         Wednesday 6 July 2022, 8am

 

Note:   These minutes are subject to approval as a correct record at the next meeting of the Forum.

 

minutes\sf15sept21

 

THESE MINUTES HAVE BEEN PRODUCED, WHEREVER POSSIBLE, ON RECYCLED PAPER