Agenda and minutes


No. Item


Apologies for absence


The Chair advised that Councillor Chris Davies had decided to step down as Vice Chair of this Committee and this position has now been taken by Councillor Lee Davies.   On behalf of the Committee, the Chair wished to thank Councillor Chris Davies for the work he has done as Vice Chair. 


The Chair also advised Members that there is a vacancy on this Committee for a Co-opted Member and that this vacancy will be filled during the course of the next month. 


Councillor Chris Davies advised members that Ryan Crowley will no longer be the Youth Forum Representative on this Committee due to his busy timetable at University, but that there is currently a review of young people engagement on Scrutiny Committees being carried out.  


Apologies for absence received from Councillor Brent Carter, Claire Brown and Anne Roberts (Co-optees).


Declarations of Interest (including whipping declarations)

Members are reminded of their personal responsibility to declare any personal and prejudicial interest in respect of matters contained in this agenda in accordance with the provisions of the Local Government and Finance Act 1992 relating to Council Tax, the Local Government Act 2000, the Council’s Constitution and the Members Code of Conduct




(a)  Members are reminded that they must identify the item number and subject matter that their interest relates to and signify the nature of the personal interest and


(b)  Where Members withdraw from a Meeting as a consequence of the disclosure of a prejudicial interest they must notify the Chair when they leave




Councillor Chris Davies declared an interest in Item 4 (Nursery Sufficiency and 30 hours Childcare Offer) as he is the registered person for Plant Bach Pre School but has dispensation to speak and vote on this matter. 


Inspection Area 3 - Leadership and Management pdf icon PDF 234 KB


Sue Walker led the Committee through the report on Inspection Area 3  -  Leadership and Management.


Sue Walker advised the Committee that the original judgement for Inspection Area 3 was ‘good’ because there were ‘strong features with minor aspects that may require improvement’.   However following the Learning awayday, reflecting on where we were, the judgement will change from ‘Good’ to ‘Adequate’ and needs improvement. 


The following questions were raised by the Committee and were responded to in detail by the officers:


·         Clarification on the current absence of a robust corporate self-evaluation system which is acknowledged as a significant weakness.


·         Requirement to share knowledge across departments so that staff have the opportunity to keep up to date with regard to their areas of responsibility. 


·         The possibility of further opportunities for immediate access to training for all staff in relation to safeguarding. 


·         Clarification on the Child Safeguarding Policy.


·         In relation to the use of resources, how will the Authority demonstrate sustained impact from the allocation of resources and spending decisions on supporting positive outcomes for all learners. 


·         The role of the Central South Consortium.


·         Local Government Educational Services Framework.


·         Future focus of this Committee.


·         Progress on the outcome of the Capita One Review.




The contents of the report be noted. 


Nursery Sufficiency and 30 Hrs Childcare Offer pdf icon PDF 197 KB


Anthony Lewis gave members an update on the progress made by the Local Authority in relation to Nursery Sufficiency and 30 hours Childcare Offer and advised that following the conclusion of the Sufficiency Review, a report will be taken to Council recommending a way forward for nursery education across the County Borough and advising of the likely impact on the 30 hours childcare offer.  


The following questions were raised by the Committee and were responded to in detail by Officers:


·         Why is the Local Authority not yet formally determined a sufficient provision of nursery education for its area?


·         Why is the Authority commissioning work to undertake an assessment.  Can this be carried out in house? 


·         Clarification on the significant number of children from Flying Start settings experiencing delays of one or two terms before accessing FPN2 in September. 


·         Short supply of places in Welsh Medium (WM) Nursery Education.


·         Clarification on  the remaining 9% or 97 pupils that were delayed entry to nursery education in January or April 2018 until September 2018.


·         Childcare Offer  -  how many potential providers have been identified in Merthyr Tydfil and how many have signed up to the 30 hours offer to date?


Alan Rees (Co-optee) left the meeting at 4.55 pm.


Councillor Chris Davies left the meeting at 5.15 pm




The contents of the report be noted.




Scrutiny Committee Work Programme pdf icon PDF 438 KB

Additional documents:


The Committee considered and agreed the Work Programme.


Scrutiny Referrals, Feedback and Follow up Actions


The Chair advised that there were no referrals, feedback or follow up actions to discuss.


Reflection and Evaluation of Meeting

To receive an update from the Chair


The Chair and the Committee reflected in detail on the items that had been considered at the meeting.


Any other business deemed urgent by the Chair


The Chair referred to the additional report on the ISB Funding Reductions for 2019/2020 which was handed out to members at the pre-meeting.  Due to the short timescales, it was agreed by members that in order to give this document due consideration, a Special Learning and LAESCYP Scrutiny Committee be convened for Monday, 17th December 2018 at 2.00 pm. 



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