Agenda and minutes

Venue: Manor Green School

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Items
No. Item

17.

Apologies

To receive any apologies for absence.

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were received from Helen McHale, Heather Clapp, Heidi Swindenbank, Ann Entwistle, Amanda Hough and Nick Stevens,

18.

Declarations of Interest pdf icon PDF 131 KB

To receive any declarations of interest.

Minutes:

There were no declarations of interest received.

19.

DfE Schools National Funding Formula - consultation stage 1

To discuss the consultation issues to enable Schools Forum to formulate a response.

Minutes:

The Schools Forum were informed that the special meeting had been called to agreed the Forums submission to the Governments consultation.  It was noted that the Local Education Authority would be making their own separate submission.

 

The Forum approved the following responses:

 

Principles for a reformed funding system

 

1 Do you agree with our proposed principles for the funding system?

Yes

 

Please provide any further comments::

All principles are valid and sensible

 

The structure of the funding system

 

2 Do you agree with our proposal to move to a school-level national funding formula in 2019-20, removing the requirement for local authorities to set a local formula?

 

Yes

 

Please provide any further comments:

 

The timetable for hard formula implementation and subsequent application of a MFG must be sufficient to allow planning for staff changes and/or restructuring.

If additional funding was deemed to be necessary to meet a local need, each school would need to contribute on a voluntary basis unless a local formal agreement was established which is unlikely to be straightforward.

 

Building block A: per-pupil costs

 

3 Do you agree that the basic amount of funding for each pupil should be different at primary, key stage 3 and key stage 4?

Yes

 

Please provide any further comments:

 

The stage 2 detail will be important - particularly the differential between primary and KS3 being kept to modest levels and the very significant increase in secondary costs being recognised at KS4.

 

Building block B: additional needs factors

 

4a Do you agree that we should include a deprivation factor?

Yes

 

4b Which measures for the deprivation factor do you support?

Pupil- and area-level

 

Please provide any further comments:

 

The review of IDACI every 5 years causes step changes in funding for some schools. This does not adhere to the fundamental principle of predictability.

 

5 Do you agree we should include a low prior attainment factor?

Yes

 

Please provide any further comments:

In principle, we agree that this is necessary to support schools with significant numbers of low prior attainers. The stage 2 detail will be will be important.

 

6a Do you agree that we should include a factor for English as an additional language?

 

Yes

 

6b Do you agree that we should use the EAL3 indicator (pupils registered at any point during the previous 3 years as having English as an additional language?

Yes

 

Please provide any further comments:

If there had been an option to choose EAL4 or 5 we would have given it serious consideration as the need still presents itself in that time period.

 

Building block C: school costs

 

7 Do you agree that we should include a lump sum factor?

Yes

 

8 Do you agree that we should include a sparsity factor?

Not Answered

 

Please provide any further comments:

No relevant experience in order to form an opinion

 

Building block C: other school costs

 

9 Do you agree that we should include a business rates factor?

No

 

10 Do you agree that we should include a split sites  ...  view the full minutes text for item 19.

20.

DfE High Needs funding formula and other reforms - consultation stage 1

To discuss the consultation issues to enable Schools Forum to formulate a response.

Minutes:

Principles for a reformed funding system

 

1 Do you agree with our proposed principles for the funding system?

Yes

 

Should there also be a principle to support early intervention?

 

The Forum queried whether a formula-driven and transparent principle is rather undermined by the phrase " it is not necessary or desirable to have complete

consistency across the country" on p20 of the paper.

 

Distributing high needs funding to local authorities

 

2 Do you agree that the majority of high needs funding should be distributed to local authorities rather than directly to schools and other institutions?

 

Yes

 

Please provide any further comments:

However, schools must be able to rely on the transparency principle so that forward planning and future proofing are enabled.

 

3 Do you agree that the high needs formula should be based on proxy measures of need, not the assessed needs of children and young people?

 

No

 

Please provide any further comments:

 

There is more work to be done on the measures to capture all additional needs. For instance, we could not see where so-called high-functioning autistic children's

needs would be met. We were also concerned that the wording of the question is likely to provoke an emotive rather than a well-informed response.

 

Formula design

 

4 Do you agree with the basic factors proposed for the formula?

Yes/No - Basic entitlement:

 

Agree

 

Yes/No - Population:

 

Agree

 

Yes/No - Child health:

 

Disagree

 

Yes/No - Child disability:

 

Agree

 

Yes/No - Low attainment at key stage 2:

 

Disagree

 

Yes/No - Low attainment at key stage 4:

 

Disagree

 

Yes/No - Deprivation - free school meal eligibility:

 

Agree

 

Yes/No - Deprivation - income deprivation affecting children index:

 

Agree

 

Yes/No - Adjustments - for "imports/exports":

 

Agree

 

Please provide any further comments:

 

There is limited confidence in the accuracy of data captured through census checks and even less through NHS records, to secure up-to-date, current data sets

for strategic budget planning at school level.

 

5 We are not proposing to make changes to the distribution of funding for hospital education, but would welcome views as we continue working with representatives of this sector on the way forward.

 

Please provide your comments::

No opinion

 

6 Which methodology for the area cost adjustment do you support?

 

general labour market methodology

 

Please provide any further comments:

 

Managing a smooth transition

 

7 Do you agree that we should include a proportion of 2016-17 spending in the formula allocations of funding for high needs?

 

Yes

 

Please provide any further comments:

 

8 Do you agree with our proposal to protect local authorities' funding through an overall minimum funding guarantee?

 

Yes

 

Please provide any further comments::

 

The inclusion of an on-going damping mechanism to smooth out step changes in funding would be a welcome addition.

Changes to the way high needs funding supports mainstream schools

 

9 We welcome views on what should be covered in any national guidelines on what schools offer for their pupils with special educational needs and disabilities.

 

10 Do you agree with the proposed changes to the funding of  ...  view the full minutes text for item 20.