Venue: COUNCIL CHAMBER
Apologies for absence
Apologies for absence were received from K Sutton Co-opted Member and Councillor L Mytton Cabinet Member.
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
No Declarations of Interest were made.
Afon Taf Headteacher Presentation
The Chair welcomed Mr Stuart James Headtacher Afon Taf High School and Mrs R Lazell in her capacity as Chair of Governors to the Meeting.
Mr James then made a Presentation to the Committee on the ‘Improvement Journey’ giving details on:
· Overview of School Priority Areas 2017 – 2020
· Revised Leadership Structure 2018 – 19
· Staff Re-Structure
· School Finances
· Key School Priorities
· Ethos – Develop Resilient and Independent Learners
· School Wide Expectations
· Role of Afon Taf within the Wider Community
· Teaching and Learning
· Leadership and Management
The following questions were then raised by the Committee and were responded to in detail by Mr James:
· Does the School have ‘Prefects’ - If yes how long are Pupils ‘Prefects’ and what percentage of the total Pupil number are ‘Prefects’
· Areas for Improvement – What Systems are in place to monitor success
· Mental Health Issues – Does the School have an understanding of the different disorders and is there staff training to identify
· What is the School doing to ensure that it is an inclusive School – Is there support extended to wider families
· Development of a ‘Nurture Provision’ to ensure Pupil’s Social and Emotional Needs – Parenting is a significant factor – Is there specific parental involvement – Is there a Policy available for Parents to view
· Measurement of Performance – Can an update be provided of where the school is now and where it will be in August when results are known
· Is the percentage above the Welsh average
· Stress levels of Pupils and families – What Strategies are in place for Staff
· Is there engagement with local Community Groups
· Explanation requested in relation to ‘Lesson Observations’
· Further information requested in relation to the ‘Database’ – How long has this data collection been operational in the School
· Teaching and Learning – Staff engagement with the support provided
The Chair then thanked Mr James for the Presentation to the Committee and the response to the questions raised.
Cyfarthfa Headteacher Presentation
The Chair welcomed Mr Rod Francis Headteacher Cyfarthfa High School, Mr Gareth Morgan Chair of Governors and Mr John Wallbank Vice Chair of Governors to the Meeting.
Mr Morgan then outlined to the Committee details in relation to the Year 11 English Exam results for the School. Mr Morgan also referred to the last ESTYN report and the three recommendations that had been made and the current five Priorities.
Mr Francis then made a Presentation to the Committee on the ‘Cyfarthfa High School Improvement Plan 2018 – 2021’ giving details on the School Priorities:
· Priority 1a – Raise expectations and improve standards of attainment at KS4 in line with Welsh Government Key Performance Indicators
· Priority 1b – Raise expectations and standards of attainment in Literacy and Numeracy at KS3
· Wellbeing and Attitudes to Learning:
· Priority 2 – Develop positive attitudes to Learning: Improve behaviour for learning and nurture resilience, perseverance and motivation to improve learners’ wellbeing, with particular reference to improving attendance and reducing exclusions. Also construct and implement a plan to improve the school environment and site security
· Teaching and Learning Experiences:
· Priority 3a - Improve the quality of teaching and learning and assessment outcomes in line with the Professional Teaching Standards
· Priority 3b - Curriculum Provision and Skills: Further develop innovative and engaging learning opportunities to ensure a curriculum which delivers Donaldson’s ‘four purposes’ and is suitable for all learners. (In line with the Welsh Government’s plans for a new Wales curriculum as outlined in ‘Successful Futures’)
· Care, Support and Guidance:
· Priority 4 – Develop strategies to ensure that the four purposes are the core values for all activities contributing to pupils’ personal development
· Leadership and Management:
· Priority 5 – Improve the effectiveness of leaders at all levels and further develop the school’s leadership capacity, including collaborative work with partner organisations
The following questions were then raised by the Committee and were responded to in detail by Mr Francis:
· Explanation requested in relation to press reports of poor communication between parents and school staff
· Explanation requested in relation to an incidence of bullying and communication with the family
· Update requested in relation to the ‘Bullying Log’
· Explanation requested in relation to ‘more able and talented’ and the impact on pupils
· Impact of the loss of the sixth form
· Date of last Estyn Inspection
· Information in relation to the purchase of information hardware investment
· How much engagement is there with parents
· What support is received from the Central South Consortium and what has provided the most impact
The Chair then thanked the representatives from Cyfarthfa High School for the Presentation to the Committee and the response to the questions raised.
Mr A Rees left the Meeting at 5.30 pm.
Mrs A Roberts left the Meeting at 5.35 pm.
The Chair welcomed Councillor C Davies Cabinet Member, Sue Walker, Sarah Bowen and Emma Wilmott to the Meeting.
The Chair then referred to the ‘Update on Additional Learning Needs Services (ALN) to Incorporate PRU’s, LRBS’ report.
The following questions were then raised by the Committee and were responded to in detail by Councillor Davies and the Officers:
· Are there sufficient resources and what are the cost implications
· Resources for more pupils with complex needs
· Is the Department confident that the demands and needs of children are being met
· Are there figures available for children referred who have been declined a service
Councillor Davies advised that further reports and details would be shared with the Committee.
The report be noted.
Mrs R Lazelle left the Meeting at 5.46 pm.
The Chair referred the Committee to the ‘Greenfield School Outreach Service Update’ report.
The following question was raised on the report and was responded to by Sue Walker:
· Appendix 1 – Who was surveyed
The report be noted.
The Chair referred the Committee to the ‘Work Programme 2018/19’ report and proposed that in relation to the forward Work Programme for 2019/2020 that all Committee Members submit their requests for items to be considered to the Scrutiny Officer and the Committee agreed this.
Scrutiny Referrals, Feedback and Follow up Actions
The Chair advised that there was no update on this item.
Reflection and Evaluation of Meeting
To receive an update from the Chair
The Chair and the Committee reflected in detail on the items discussed in the Meeting.
Any other business deemed urgent by the Chair
The Chair advised that there was no business deemed urgent.