Issue - items at meetings - School Standards and Achievement: Annual report

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Issue - meetings

School Standards and Achievement: Annual report

Meeting: 18/11/2013 - Children & Young People Committee (Item 46)

46 School Standards and Achievement: Annual report pdf icon PDF 68 KB

Report of the Executive Director, Children’s Services (copy attached)

Additional documents:


RESOLVED – That the Committee note the contents of the report.


46.1    The Committee considered a report of the Executive Director of Children’s Services which provided an analysis of the unvalidated assessment data for the academic year 2012/ 2013.


46.2    The data showed a rise in standards across all key stages (6, 11, 16 and 18 year olds) and also an increase in progress. The full data set, including value added was not yet available and would be included in a future update report. Whilst standards and achievement were moving in the right direction, the available data indicated that more remained to be done and outlined the priorities that had been set moving forward.


46.3    The Strategic Commissioner, Standards and Achievement explained that this represented an interim update and that a further report would be brought back to the Committee when all of the data had been finalised.


46.4    Councillor Simson stated that in the past Members had received details of the outcome of any Ofsted assessments which were available at each meeting. It was useful for Members to receive this information and she requested whether it would be possible for this to appear as a standing item on future agendas. The Executive Director of Children’s Services confirmed that this could be done and that information available when each agenda was printed would be provided for future meetings.


46.5    Mrs Davies, Parent Forum sought clarification of the numbers of exclusions that had taken place over the period covered by the report. It was agreed that this information would be provided to Mrs Davies.


46.6    Councillor Lepper referred to an article for which no source had been given which had referred to a rise in the number of assaults on teachers. She considered that the article was divisive and misleading given that the progress that had been made in al areas across the city’s schools over a number of years.


46.7    Ms Travers, CEO of Amaze also referred to the work being undertaken by the Scrutiny Panel which had undertaken work around this issue. It would be helpful if its findings and final recommendations could be shared with the Committee. Councillor Brown concurred in that view, she believed that the Panel was in to process of formulating its recommendations and that it was intended for them to be forwarded to the Committee for information.


46.8    The Executive Director of Children’s Services stated that bullying, particularly when it involved serious/illegal instances such as assault were taken very seriously and robust measures were in place to deal with such incidents.


46.9    The Acting Assistant Director Education and Inclusion stated that a lot of work had been carried out in relation to this matter in order to provide advice and support to schools particularly in the area of fixed term exclusions.


46.10  It was noted that although the figures contained in the report remained to be verified there were unlikely to be significant differences between the draft and final data.


46.11  Councillor Wealls commended GCSE result - however he referred to the initiatives being undertaken to close the gap in achievement particularly at Key Stages 2 and 4. It was explained that various initiatives were in place as part of a five point strategy to address these problems which included courses for middle leadership staff within schools, schools mentoring other schools, use of the pupil premium and training for school governors.


46 12  Councillor Wealls commended the continuing improvements in GCSE results, but considered that it was also important to draw out and emphasise the value added work that was carried out too. He also, Wealls considered that it was important that training available especially that for school governors was well publicised to ensure maximum take up.


46.13  Councillor Gilbey referred to the initiatives in place to support the lowest 20% and the characteristics of this group, noting the percentage of this group who were summer born. Given that children in this group could be considerably younger than their peers it was recognised that there was often a gap in their achievement levels particularly during their when entering school. Councillor Gilbey enquired whether data relating to summer born children was available for other categories.


46.14  Councillor Pissaridou enquired whether it was possible for children to delay the date of entry into school and it was confirmed that children were placed in the appropriate age group for their year on entry into school, summer born children would be full time by the spring/easter term.


46.15  Councillor Simson asked how parents were made aware that their child had received a fixed term exclusion and it was explained that a letter was sent by recorded delivery from the school. This process had to be observed in order for the document to be legal. The Acting Assistant Director Education and inclusion explained that the makeup of cohorts moving through schools changed year on year. However, the LEA worked with schools to address any issues that arose.


46.16  Councillor Powell referred the poem set out on page 61 of the agenda which was an encouraging example of the standards achieved in schools.


46.17  Councillor A Kitcat referred to the emerging picture across Brighton and Hove schools which were very encouraging. Councillor Kitcat noted the initiatives which were due to take place during 2014/15 this was an exciting initiative and in answer to further questions it was confirmed that the impetus of these would be carried forward in order to maintain high quality improvements particularly where levels fell below the national average. The Executive Director of Children’s Services confirmed that initiatives were intended as a tool to help to embed good practice which would be self sustaining within schools.


46.18  RESOLVED – That the Committee note the contents of the report.


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