Agenda and minutes

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No. Item



To receive any apologies of absence.


Apologies for absence were received by Isabel Cooke, Heidi Swindenbank, Joolz Scarlett, Amanda Hough, Hugh Boulter, Richard Pilgrim and Alison Penny.


Declarations of Interest pdf icon PDF 219 KB

To receive any declarations of interest.


There were no declarations of interest received.


Minutes pdf icon PDF 68 KB

To approve the minutes of the previous meeting.


The minutes of the meeting held on 28 March 2017 were approved as a true and correct record.


Matters arising from the minutes were:


·         Paragraph four new SEN matrix.  It was informed that 10 reviews had gone through the new matrix with two of them being re-reviewed.  The general feedback was positive and moving in the right direction; although further work was required.

·         It was noted that the funding discussion with special schools had not taken place yet due to a change in the finance team at Manor Green. Discussions would take place during the forthcoming term.

·         Fair access protocol and managed moves.  It was noted that there had been three successful managed moves during this term and one was due to go through the fair access protocol.  Managed moves continued to be challenging. 

·         National funding formula.  There had been no update regarding a shift in policy post election.  There may be a delay in implementation but the LA would proceed as planned until informed otherwise.


Terms of Reference

To consider the report.


The Forum were informed that following the recommendations of the recent Task and Finish Group the financial partner and Mr Boulter had review the Forum’s terms of reference.  The main recommendations were as follows:


·         Making it clear how Forum appointments were made.

·         Minutes to be published 1 days after meetings.  RBWM standard was to publish approved minutes within 15 days, officers would endeavour to publish within 10 days commitments permitting.  

·         Draft budget to the October meeting.  It was agreed that a draft budget could be presented to the October meeting with the caveat that the final budget would be approved once notice given from the DFE.

·         Agenda items would be co-sponsored by Forum members and officers.

·         Improved agenda setting.


There was one item that officers and Mr Boulter could not agree upon and this was the production of an annual report as the request was that the LEA wrote this. 


The vice-Chairman mentioned that Mr Boulter was keen on having an annual report showing what decisions had been made and looking forward to future issues.    He felt that this need only be a short bullet point report.  The Director for Education mentioned that this could be an agenda item on the final meeting of the year for the Forum to discuss and own.


The Vice-Chairman said that for the next meeting the Forum should have the approved new terms of reference presented and discuss the production of the annual report. 


The Vice-Chairman circulated a proposed timetable for future Forum meetings that included 6 cycles per year with earlier agenda publication allowing the agenda to be discussed at cluster meetings.  It was noted that the December meeting may need to be to January to meet DFE timescales.


Resolved unanimously: that the revised terms of reference be approved in principle subject to them being presented at the next Forum meeting.  There would be a future discussion on a Forum annual report.


SEND Update

To consider the verbal update.


The Director of Children’s Services informed the Forum that notification of a Local Area SEND inspection had been received from Ofsted two weeks ago with the inspection taking place over a week.  There would be a Part I and Part II discussion on the inspection.


The Forum were also informed that with regards to the SEND Action Plan work had started on out of borough placements and discussions with providers had been undertaken for next years placements. 


PRU services had been inspected  over April and May and the overall effectiveness was required improvement.  There had been progress made with the use of Haybrook College which had been well recived and its use would be extended into the following year.  The focus of the PRU would be early engagement to get the pupil back into a mainstream setting as soon as appropriate.


In response to questions the Forum were informed that there were currently 14 pupils on role with the PRU with this years highest being 24 pupils.  There had been 3 primary school pupils.


With regards to the Local area SEND inspection the Forum were informed that he Children and Families Act 2014 placed responsibility on the local area, which includes the local authority, health commissioners and providers, to identify and meet the needs of children and young people and those who have special educational needs and/or disabilities aged 0 to 25.


The inspection was a joint inspection including one of Her Majesty’s Inspectors (HMI) (lead), a Care Quality Commission (CQC) inspector and an Ofsted Inspector.  Inspectors choose which groups of parents and carers to speak with and which schools, colleges and other institutions to visit.  About 38 families took part in webinars, 68 professionals made themselves available and evidence was received from over 60 families. 


In response to questions the Forum where informed that it was expected that the inspectors would hear that the boroughs children do well in schools and that we have committed professionals who make a difference.  It was not expected that we would hear that given the level of investment, especially health, that there were some families who were not aware of services available to them.


An area improvement plan would be produced that would utilise collaboration between all agencies.


The SEND update was noted.




RESOLVED UNAIMOUSLY: That under Section 100(A)(4) of the Local Government Act 1972, the public be excluded from the remainder of the meeting whilst discussion takes place on the grounds that they involve the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in Paragraphs 1-7 of part I of Schedule 12A of the Act.


SEND Update