Venue: This meeting will be held virtually. As a member of the public you can view the virtual meeting via the County Council's website. The website will provide details of how to access the meeting
Contact: Anne Barrett 38372
To confirm the non-exempt minutes of the meeting of the Cabinet Member - Young People held on 5 January 2021
RESOLVED that the minutes of the meeting of the Cabinet Member for Young People held on 2 January 2021 be confirmed as a correct record.
The Cabinet Member was asked to confirm the nominations of persons to serve as local authority school governors. Appointments made by governing boards would be subject to the completion of a Declaration of Eligibility form, a proof of identity check and an enhanced DBS check.
RESOLVED that the Cabinet Member confirms the nominations for persons to serve as local authority governors as follows:-
A Flint - Hallam Fields Junior School
P Ambrose - Fairfield Infant & Nursery School
C Furness - New Mills School
A Thomas - Northfield Junior School
P Nicholson - Park House Primary School
The Department for Education statutory Guidance ‘The School Admissions Code’ (2014) requires that each local authority must have a fair access protocol. All schools and academies must participate in their local authority’s protocol in order to ensure that unplaced children, who live in the home local authority, especially the most vulnerable, were offered a place at a suitable school in the home local authority as quickly as possible, including admitting children to schools that were already full.
The current protocol has been in place since the academic year 2015/16 and in order to allocate pupils fairly, has relied on a system of allocating points to schools admitting a pupil under these arrangements and deducting points for permanent exclusion, however the process has proven to be unsatisfactory. The chair of the fair access panel raised the issue with primary headteacher colleagues at area heads’ meetings in summer 2019 and following feedback a task and finish group comprising nine headteachers, two governors and three officers of the council was formed to produce a revised protocol.
The revised protocol strengthens the requirement to attend a local meeting to agree the most appropriate school to meet a child’s needs, by involving governors at an early stage. In addition, following no agreement to admit a child escalation would be to a neutral Fair Access Resolution Panel, whose membership is drawn from headteachers and governors not linked to the particular schools involved in the dispute. Final escalation was also included, specifically direction to admit by the Secretary of State.
The revised protocol was presented to 197 headteachers at the area heads meetings in November 202 and they were asked to respond to the chair of the Fair Access Panel. Six responses were received and detailed in the report.
Since the consultation the Admissions Department has advised that the current School Admissions Code did not accept an Ofsted judgement of Inadequate as grounds for refusal of admission and in order to avoid contradiction of the Code, this has been removed from the revised protocol.
RESOLVED to approve the adoption and implementation of the revised Fair Access Protocol for primary schools.
In support of children and young people with complex needs, an agreement with a pooled budget arrangement between the Council and the Derby and Derbyshire Clinical Commissioning Group (DDCCG), pursuant to Section 75 of the National Health Service (NHS) Act 2006 has been in operation since April 2013. Historically a pooled budget arrangement with Health Partners - Derbyshire County Primary Care Trust has existed since July 2010.
The annual budget established in 2010 was £6,340,000 with a target to reduce care costs by 5% and reduce the considerable administration associated with this type of placement for both the DDCCG and County Council. The original agreement was successful in containing costs, minimising bureaucracy and most importantly delivering timely specialist placements. There has been no inflationary increase in the budget over the last decade and the actual spend for 2019/20 was £7.17m, however had the budget increased each year in line with inflation, the 2010 budget would equate to £7.65m in 2019/20, demonstrating a real term reduction in
costs. The average cost of placements has increased from £3,653 per week on average in 2014/15 to £4,396 per week in 2019/20 and £4,721 per week in 2020/21.
This cohort of children and young people were some of the most vulnerable in Derbyshire. The majority were children in care and experienced a range of health and special educational needs that could not collectively be addressed by local or standard services. The Section 75 has been recognised by HMI, CQC and Ofsted as “successful” and “ensures a joined-up approach to the commissioning of services for those children who meet the local criteria of ‘high complex needs’”. DDCCG approved funding to commission two case manager roles to support and assure the complex cases process and opportunities for improvements in the procedures have been highlighted and would be implemented as part of a revised Section 75 agreement.
Approval for the continuation of the Section 75 arrangement for a further period of 2 years (with an option of a third year) would maintain continuity and allow proposals and changes to be embedded to ensure the most effective use of this agreement. Agreement has been obtained from the CCG Governing Body for this Section 75 agreement to continue for a further period of 2 years, subject to following and implementing the recommendations that were outlined in the review dated July 2020. Formal approval by the CCG would be sought from their Governing Body.
RESOLVED that approval is given for the Authority to enter into a Section 75 agreement with pooled budget arrangement with the Derby and Derbyshire Clinical Commissioning Group for a further period of 2 years (with an option of a third year), in order to provide and fund support packages for children and young people with complex needs whilst carrying out a review of current processes and placements.