Agenda and minutes

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Items
No. Item

14.

Chair

Minutes:

As the Chairman of the Committee (Councillor Fairley) was delayed due to a road accident, the Chair was occupied by the Vice-Chairman (Councillor Baker) for items 15, 16, 17 and 18 part).

15.

Apologies for Absence and Substitutions

The Committee is asked to note any apologies for absence and substitutions received from Members.

Minutes:

Apologies were received from Councillor Raby (with Councillor Davis substituting) and also from Councillor Poonian (with no substitute).

16.

Minutes of the Last Meeting pdf icon PDF 113 KB

To confirm and sign as a correct record, the minutes of the last meeting of the Committee, held on 11 July 2016. 

Minutes:

The minutes of the last meeting of the Committee, held on 11 July 2016, were approved as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.

17.

Declarations of Interest

Councillors are invited to declare any Disclosable Pecuniary Interests or other interest, and the nature of it, in relation to any item on the Agenda.

 

Minutes:

Declarations were made by Councillor K T King (as his wife was employed as a teacher) and Councillor I J Henderson (as he was a Member of Essex County Council).

18.

Working in Partnership to support the recruitment and retention of Teachers

The Committee will receive a presentation from Graham Lancaster, the ECC’s Lead Commissioner for Primary Schools (North East), on working in partnership to support the recruitment and retention of Teachers.

Minutes:

During the consideration of this item the Chairman arrived and occupied the Chair.

 

Mr Lancaster informed the Committee that he had been previously employed as a teacher and was now employed by Essex County Council (ECC) as the Lead Commissioner for Primary Schools (North East).

 

Mr Lancaster said he had attended the Council’s Locality Board meeting held on Thursday 29 September 2016 and said that the Tendring District had a great cause for celebration in respect of its School Ofsted reports.  He reported that Ofsted had reported Tendring Secondary Schools as being 100%, good or outstanding.  This was unheard of in Essex previously and also 80% of Primary Schools were now good or outstanding.   He said that several other Primary Schools were due to be examined in the near future, which he believed, would bring the figure up to 90% which would be an enormous improvement.  He added that those figures were closing in on the national figures.  Mr Lancaster further said that in terms of the gap with disadvantaged pupils, Tendring was doing better than the whole of Essex.

 

Mr Lancaster informed the Committee that there were a number of challenges that schools were facing which included recruitment and retention of teachers and also school readiness for pupils at the age of 4 who could have differing problems ranging from being unable to speak, not toilet trained and with very low development skills.  He added that there was an enormous amount of work to make children ready to enter schools’ reception classes and parents needed to help get their children ready for school.

 

He said there was an enormous challenge for school places, especially with Colchester being the fastest growing town in the country and there was also an immense pressure for school places in Tendring.  He explained that there was a great deal of communication currently going on between school placement departments and Headteachers, along with school class numbers, the expansion of schools or even the building of new ones.  He added that there was a 10-year tracking of numbers of pupils in schools in the county.        

 

With regard to recruitment and retention of teachers Mr Lancaster said that he Chaired groups of Headteachers Associations and had a workforce team who advertised teacher vacancies.  He added that this was a national problem, with the Eastern Region being a particular problem, with it being an even worse problem in Essex and the Coastal area being even worse still, along with the area around the M25.

 

Mr Lancaster said there were two reasons why schools in Tendring were attaining better results, the first being the quality of leadership whereby that in 40 schools only 5 or 6 of them had the same Headteacher currently since he had got involved around 4 or 5 years ago.  He said that a new Headteacher would give real passion to the role and real belief that Tendring pupils could attain good results as elsewhere.  Secondly, he said, Headteachers expected teachers to be effective  ...  view the full minutes text for item 18.

19.

Report of the Corporate Director (Corporate Services) - A.1 - Update on Community Projects - Education pdf icon PDF 206 KB

To provide an update to the Committee on Community Projects relating to Education.

Minutes:

The Council’s Executive Projects Manager (Rebecca Morton) gave an update on Education and she advised the Committee that the Council was working with both teachers and schools and gave an update on the work undertaken so far.  She said that there had been a Teach First Partnership Conference in May 2016 with Senior Executives and representatives from Canterbury Christ Church University.

 

The Teach First Summer School, she said, had been launched in the summer of 2016 for students commencing teacher training and it was intended that teachers would be placed in Tendring schools in 2017.

 

Mrs Morton informed the Committee that a Wellbeing Hub had started a pilot scheme with the Headteacher at Great Bentley Primary School becoming a Cluster Lead.  The Headteacher was keen to work on a teacher led after school facility with trained Youth Mental Health First Aiders with the training being provided by Mental Health First Aid England.  She said that it was designed to enable teachers to identify early signs of mental health issues to signpost mental health issues to mental health experts.  She said it was intended to pilot the scheme in the 2016/17 academic year and if it proved successful it was intended to cascade training to other clusters in the Tendring District.

 

She said that a Post 16 Provision a meeting had been held in April 2016 with local education providers, Councillors and Officers to discuss education provision and what support was available and how discretionary grants could be used, for example, for transport and essential equipment.

 

Mrs Morton said that Memorandums of Understanding were now in place with the University of Essex and Anglia Ruskin University with a representative from Anglia Ruskin to attend a meeting of the Tendring Education Improvement Group to explore the ways the University could support primary schools, and added that secondary school links and support were already well established.

 

She said that when it came to school places there had been a recent meeting held with the Schools Organisation Officer at ECC regarding a 10 year Plan for school places, covering 2016 – 2026. 

 

Mrs Morton said that there were a number of challenges ahead which meant schools in Tendring needed to maintain and raise standards, recruitment and retention of teachers which included the retention of the District’s Headteachers.  She added that it was necessary to encourage schools to work together, sharing resources and preparing children for school readiness.

 

A Member asked if in addition to the current work there were any projects looking at developing cross-skills, peer education and helping towards employment.  Miss Morton said that there was nothing immediately planned but that the Education Improvement Group were keen to encourage career guidance. 

 

A Member raised the issue of mental health and identifying youngsters with that problem and said that there had been a real concern amongst group case studies that some youngsters were waiting after 37 weeks to be assessed on their issues which was unhelpful for the children and their families suffering  ...  view the full minutes text for item 19.