Agenda and minutes

People Scrutiny Commission - Thursday, 18th July, 2019 2.00 pm

Venue: City Hall College Green Bristol BS1 5TR

Contact: Shauna Nash  0117 92 22478

No. Item


Welcome, Introduction and Safety Information pdf icon PDF 97 KB


In lieu of an elected Chair, the Scrutiny Adviser welcomes everyone to the meeting.



Annual Business Report pdf icon PDF 172 KB


RESOLVED: Cllr Hiscott Elected as Chair – Nominated by Cllr Brenda Massey and seconded by Cllr Steven Smith

REVOLED: Cllr Phipps elected as vice chair –– Nominated by Cllr Brenda Massey and seconded by Cllr Eleanor Combley


RESOLVED:  CommissionMembers noted

RESOLVED: Meeting dates confirmed



Apologies for Absence and Substitutions


Apologies have been received from the following Commission Members: Cllr Jude English, Cllr Tim Kent and Cllr Pickersgill.


Cllr Harriet Clough is substituting for Cllr Tim Kent.



Declarations of Interest

To note any declarations of interest from the Councillors. They are asked to

indicate the relevant agenda item, the nature of the interest and in particular

whether it is a disclosable pecuniary interest.


Any declaration of interest made at the meeting which is not on the register of

interests should be notified to the Monitoring Officer for inclusion.


Cllr Clough declared that she is an Adult Social Care service user.



Work Programme pdf icon PDF 64 KB

Additional documents:


Resolved: The work programme is noted.



Minutes of Previous Meeting pdf icon PDF 59 KB

To agree the minutes of the previous meeting as a correct record.


Resolved: The Minutes of the last meeting are agreed as an accurate reflection of the meeting.



Chair's Business

To note any announcements from the Chair


No Chairs Business



Public Forum

Up to 30 minutes is allowed for this item.


Any member of the public or Councillor may participate in Public Forum.  The detailed arrangements for so doing are set out in the Public Information Sheet at the back of this agenda.  Public Forum items should be emailed to and please note that the following deadlines will apply in relation to this meeting:-


Questions - Written questions must be received 3 clear working days prior to the meeting.  For this meeting, this means that your question(s) must be received in this office at the latest by 5 pm on Friday 12th July.


Petitions and Statements - Petitions and statements must be received on the working day prior to the meeting.  For this meeting this means that your submission must be received in this office at the latest by 12.00 noon on Wednesday 17th July.


Public Question






Sally Kent

Where will these children be placed?



Public statements



Ref No




Sara Stocks

SEND Strategy


Jen Smith

SEND Strategy


Fiona Castle

SEND Strategy


Sidney Smith

SEND Strategy


Nick Flaherty, Bristol Parent Carers

SEND Strategy



Final Amended EHC Plan


Public Question:

Where will these children be placed?


Submitted by:  Sally Kent

Topic: SEND


There are 558 EHC plans currently waiting to be finalised by Bristol SEN department. Statistically 42% of children with plans in Bristol are in special schools. Bristol Special schools are full.


Going by Bristol statistics, 42% of those 558 plans will need a special placement.


Where will these children be placed?






Subject:  EHC Plans

There are 558 EHC plans currently waiting to be finalised by Bristol SEN department. Statistically 42% of children with plans in Bristol are in special schools. Bristol Special schools are full, Local Independent special schools are also full

Going by the Bristol statistics, 42% of those 558 plans will need a special placement.

What plans does the Mayor have in place to ensure that ALL children with SEND in Bristol will have a school place to attend when their plan is finalised?

Suggested points:

·       There is pressure for places in special schools, as with mainstream schools  

·       Schools in both categories have been asked to take extra pupils, and have done so

·       Many authorities share this experience; for special schools there has not been a regular allocation of capital to provide the expansion needed to reflect growing demand

·       Bristol City Council has addressed this with proposals in its recent cabinet report setting out a capital strategy for SEND 

·       Cabinet agreed investment of over £10m on projects starting this summer and for further reports to flesh out an long term strategy to ensure sufficiency of special places

·       A new special school in South Gloucestershire is expected to provide 80 places for Bristol in 2021.

·       The cabinet report acknowledged that we have EHCP pupils - the number as of last month was 62 (of c.2800) - in Alternative Provision, and we need to address that (as many LAs do)

·       The director has personally involved himself in cases in order to achieve resolution

Additional information

Cabinet agreed to proceed with work commencing in the summer holiday on The Keep at Kingsweston to ensure sustainable provision there, at KnowleDGE to provide post-16 accommodation (40 new places) and free up space for pre-16, and to commence planning work looking at the future of Claremont and Elmfield schools.  Annex 4 to the report contained information on several other projects for the medium to long term.

The 42% figure of special/mainstream EHCP placement looks accurate.  However we do not recognise the 558 figure.  I am advised that we have 84 plans currently waiting to be finalised.  It might be that the 500 number relates to plans awaiting annual review processing, of which the great majority would not involve a placement change.    

Prepared by:      Alan  ...  view the full minutes text for item 86.


Performance Report pdf icon PDF 346 KB


Report presented by Officer detailing performance statistics for the quarter four 2018/2019. The report highlights that opiate use is a concern in the City, particularly in Older people. The Life expectancy of woman is also dropping slightly which the Officer confirms is a reflection of the National picture. South Children services caseloads are also a concern and additional resources have been assigned to tackle this.



SEND Strategy pdf icon PDF 245 KB

Additional documents:


The report was presented by an Officer and explains that the SEND  strategy is a high level strategic document with several documents sitting underneath it with practical measures to implement the strategy. The Officer confirms that theAction plan will be published next term.


Using the extra funding that Cabinet approved on July 5th 2019, additional caseworkers and educational psychologists are being recruited. Teams within the department are working to detailed plans which aim to improve the quality of work, and create a system which parents do not have to fight against. SEND will be on the Cabinet agenda again in October 2019 with a greater monetary ask and more detail about how the service will be improved. Officers are accountable to the Cabinet Members and they will be justify any extra funding will be well spent. The Officer acknowledges that they are starting from a very low baseline, however states that improvements are already underway for example three months ago there were 100 assessments not assigned to an educational psychiatrist and now there is zero.


In response to concerns about the statistics regarding school attendance and fixed term exclusions, the Officer informs that a new Schools Strategy is being developed. This Strategy will seek to improve the overall quality of schools which will in turn improve the quality of special education needs provisions within schools. It is a priority to upskill mainstream schools giving schools ownership of all their pupils. A Toolkit has also been developed around attendance giving schools practical tips and the ability to share best practice.


The Officer acknowledged that it is possible that families are not always being informed of all the suitable services that are available to them. With regards to the influence the Council have over Academies to improve their SEND provision, the Officer reports that the new OFSTED framework will provide an element of leverage and inclusion with respects to SEND practices.


Members of the Commission expressed concerns that the style of the document does not reflect the discussion taking place and that they have greater confidence in the strategy following this discussion. The Officer informs the Commission that the strategy has been developed through the Local Area Strategic SEND Partnership (LASPAG) and forming a strategy by committee has had its challenges however the end result is a document which the whole partnership has ownership of and is committed to delivering.



Transition Support for Disabled Young People pdf icon PDF 209 KB

Additional documents:


The Officer presented a report outlining a newPathway model from Childhood to Adulthood for people with additional needs. Significant effort has been put into driving the voice of child as oppose to parental preference. Additional resources have been allocated and this has been used to upskill existing staff, concentrating on early intervention and a new team  working with teenagers 14+. This shift has been (and continues to be) a cultural change incorporating more integrated ways of working.


Currently there are five young people placed out of County. These are young people with complex needs and Bristol currently does not have the resources to place them. The team are looking at different ways Bristol can meet the needs for these placements.


It is planned that young people will be moving into the new Seamills Centre in March 2020. Discussions are taking place regarding mixed developments in the South. The Commission welcomes the innovative and child centred approach of the team.



Better Lives (focus on under 65's) pdf icon PDF 343 KB

Additional documents:


A Report is presented by the Officer outlining the work taking place on the Adults under 65 project within the Better Lives Programme.

Extra care housing has been a successful model however focus now needs to shift to tackling intergenerational living and complex needs for all ages. Housing benefit levels around city have had a negative impact on ability to support supported living in city,

When questioned by a Commission Member about the £14.50 ‘Bristol Price’ for care, Officers explain that they have been open and transparent with the market and in return, providers agreed to open their books to BCC which has left the Officers confident that the market can bare £14.50.

The Commissions led innovative approach outlined in the report and discussed today is commended by the Commission.