Agenda item - Public Involvement
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To consider the following matters raised by members of the public:
(a) Petitions: to receive any petitions presented to the full council or at the meeting itself;
(b) Written Questions: to receive any questions submitted by the due date of 12 noon on the 6 November 2017;
(c) Deputations: to receive any deputations submitted by the due date of 12 noon on the 6 November 2017.
35 (a) Petitions
35.1 The Committee considered a petition signed by 1489 people (167 on a paper petition and 1322 on an e-petition) which called for Brighton & Hove City Council to abandon the proposal to halve the admission number for Benfield Primary School. The petition was submitted by Ms J Keilthy.
35.2 The Chair provided the following response:
Thank you for taking the time to put forward your petition to the meeting. I can assure you all that in this period of public consultation your views and the views of all respondents will be taken into consideration. This is the very purpose of a consultation. The Council has put forward proposals for the city wide solution to the specific issues of rising surplus places in primary schools, and an imbalance on pupil numbers in the catchment areas of our city’s secondary schools. When public consultation closed we will take time to consider all the points raised and this will be discussed by the cross party group that looks at admission arrangements. It is the Council’s aim to ensure that all schools remain open, to help serve communities and to future proof the city for when pupil numbers rise. We need to find a solution that works across the city. In the meantime I would encourage residents to respond to the consultation through the Have Your Say consultation portal on the Brighton & Hove City Council website. Thank you for taking the time to come along today.
35.3 RESOLVED: That the petition be noted.
35.4 The Committee considered the petition referred from Full Council of 2 November 2017 which had 1570 signatures, and which called for the Council to abandon the proposal to halve the admission numbers for Hertford Infant School.
35.5 The Chair provided the following response:
At Full Council on 2 November 2017 action was required for the Committee to receive the petition regarding proposed changes to the Published Admission Number of Hertford Infant School. It was recommended that the petition be considered and the Committee request a report outlining the options for maintaining the current entry intake for Hertford Infants, including consideration of the outcomes and feasibility of adjusting the number of four-form schools, and that as part of this report an Equalities Impact Assessment be carried out. This Committee is already scheduled to receive a detailed report on the outcome of the consultation which will make recommendations to us for how admission arrangements for September 2019 should be organised. This report will include a full Equalities Impact Assessment. This will be how the Committee will be able to take forward the recommendations from Full Council. Members of the Committee will know from the last Full Council, and from those who attended the consultation event at Herford Infant School, the strength of feeling around this proposal. I also met with the head teacher and governors of Hertford Infant School this morning, and with Councillor Penn and Councillor Hill to discuss this proposal. All of this will be taken into consideration along with the other consultation results when the cross party group next meet. I’d like to thank again the petitioners for bringing this petition to the Committee.
(1) That the petition be noted;
(2) That the committee should receive a report outlining the options for maintaining the current entry intake for Hertford Infant School, including consideration of the outcomes and feasibility of adjusting the numbers of other four-form schools; and
(3) That as part of the above report, an Equalities Impact Assessment be carried out on the reduction of Hertford Infant School intake for consideration.
35 (b) Written Questions
35.7 There were none.
35 (c) Deputations
35.8 The Committee considered a deputation presented by Ms S Scerri regarding the proposal to reduce the Published Admission Number for Benfield Primary School.
35.9 The Chair provided the following response: “The proposals to reduce the Published Admission Number of five schools is not a reflection on the quality of provision delivered in those schools or a reflection of the impact the school has on its community. These proposals were put forward to help address the lower primary numbers in some areas of the city and the surplus places that will therefore be in our city’s schools. This will be an additional problem for school leaders to manage and the Council does not want to see any school close. This deputation outlines views that are essential to inform the development of proposals after a period of consultation. No decisions have been made. When the public consultation closes we will take time to consider all the points raised and how best to respond. We will receive a report in January 2018 with a considered proposal for the city’s admission arrangements for September 2019. Thank you for making your deputation.”
35.10 RESOLVED: That the deputation be noted.
35.11 The Committee considered a deputation presented by Mr D Boyle regarding the proposal to amend the secondary school catchment areas.
35.12 The Chair provided the following response: “Thank you for coming today and taking the time to bring your deputation to the Committee. The views and comments that you have outlined today will be taken into consideration when the cross party group meet after the consultation has closed to discuss school admission arrangement for September 2019. I am aware of the strength of feeling on this issue as I have attended many of the consultation meetings that have been held across the city, and indeed I was at the meeting on Thursday last week at Elm Grove Primary School. The feedback from these meetings, and all the consultation responses, will be taken into consideration. With regards to the new school, I do understand your concern but I do wish to reiterate that the expectation of all stakeholders is that the new Brighton & Hove Academy will open in September 2019, though this decision is taken by the Education and Skills Funding Agency and not the Council. The proposal put forward was to help form a city wide solution to the imbalance in numbers of secondary school pupils in the city, and the consultation period allows families and school communities to clearly outline their concerns about how they will be impacted by these proposals and I welcome the points made in this deputation. When the public consultation closes on 19 November 2017 we will take time to consider all the points raised and how best to respond. This Committee will receive a report in January 2018 with a considered proposal for the city’s admission arrangement for September 2019. Thank you for taking the time to make this deputation.”
35.13 RESOLVED: That the deputation be noted.
- Item 35 Petitions v2, item 35. PDF 292 KB
- Item 35 (a) Petitions, item 35. PDF 199 KB
- Item 35 Appendix, item 35. PDF 161 KB
- Item 35 (c) Deputations, item 35. PDF 122 KB