Agenda item

Best Start to Life Update

To consider report of the Chief Officer Education


The Chair referred to the ‘Best Start to Life Update’ report and Sue Walker led the Committee in detail through the report and together with Councillor L Mytton responded in detail to the following questions raised by the Committee:


·         Paragraph 4.3 – Are we on the right trajectory in relation to KS4

·         Paragraph 5.2 – Table 1 – Data is out of date – How is this being overcome – Is representation being made to Welsh Government regarding data – Will there be an update on the response from Welsh Government – If there are no attendance figures the reasons for this can not be identified in schools

·         Paragraph 5.3 – Condition of Education Settings  and Paragraph 6.3 – The date seems a long way away – Further information requested

·         Paragraph 5.3 – Develop a challenge and accountability framework for CSC – How are we challenging the whole framework of the CSC

·         Paragraph 3.4 – RARS Strategy – Update requested on the Youth Members – What is the level of engagement

·         Paragraph 6.1.3 - Details requested in relation to ‘on line learning’ – What are the trends – Update requested on I T equipment for on line learning – What is the Authority doing with Partners – What are the engagement levels from school to school – The issue of affordability of laptops and broadband – The balance of home schooling and work – The level of information from teachers

·         Paragraph 8.3 – Are schools envisioning any issues when pupils settle back into the curriculum when schools are re-opened 

·         The emotions of children

·         Paragraph 6.2.2 – The issuing of technology – Is there any child in any school who can not follow a digital lesson

·         What is the monitoring process for pupils who are digitally excluded

·         Paragraph 6.3 – When schools are re-opened will schools be looking at their risk assessments – Will ventilation systems be looked at – Will school Governors be involved and updated in relation to Risk Assessments

·         Paragraph 6.8 – Children eligible for Free School Meals -  What is the current total of Free School Meals – Is the increase due to the pandemic

·         (Sue Walker advised that she would supply the Committee with the figures)

·         Request for in depth information on the economic environment and the increase in take up numbers for Free School Meals – What are the ratios – The importance of understanding the economic landscape – Is it anticipated that there will be a reduction in Free School Meals when things are back to normal

·         Is the work submitted being measures – Is the way lessons are being delivered being monitored

·         Are the Colleges adapting re Grades

·         Paragraph 8.4 - Difficult to carry out what has been done in the past

·         The personal and social wellbeing of older school pupils – Update on this

·         Update on funding from Regeneration for IT equipment

·         In house Training with parents – Numbers have increased

·         Is work being done with Social Services in relation to Attendance and Anti-Social Behaviour

·         If parents are worried in relation to year 11 final grades and its impact what recourse is there for parents

·         The excellence of Teachers

·         The need to pursue the issue of data with Welsh Government

·         The need for an up to date building condition survey


The Chair then thanked Sue Walker and Councillor L Mytton for attending and the update and responses to the Committee on the report.


C Payne and S Fureed Co-opted Members left the Meeting at 5.00 pm.

Supporting documents:


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