Venue: City Hall College Green Bristol BS1 5TR
Contact: Dan Berlin 0117 3525232
The Chair welcomed all those present.
Apologies for Absence and Substitutions
Apologies for absence was received from Councillor Carole Johnson.
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.
The following non pecuniary interests were declared;
Agenda item 9 – Councillor Kent declared a family member has an EHCP.
Agenda item 9 – Councillor Rippington declared a family member has an EHCP.
To agree the minutes of the meeting on 28th November 2019 as a correct record.
The minutes of the meeting on 28 November 2019 were approved.
Councillor Hiscott (Chair) proposed and Councillor Kent seconded.
The minutes of the meeting on the 3 February 2020 were approved.
Councillor Hiscott proposed and Councillor Phipps seconded.
That minutes of the meeting on 28 November 2019 be approved as a correct record.
That minutes of the meeting on 3 February 2020 be approved as a correct record.
To note any announcements from the Chair
Councillor Hiscott, Chair, thanked the public for engaging in the work programme for 2019-20; that it has been a successful year due to the public and all those who have engaged.
Councillor Hiscott read a statement from the Director of Public Health, providing guidance to Councillors about Coronavirus.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org 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 21st February.
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 26th February.
The following public forum was received and a copy placed in the minute book;
S1: Statement from Jen Smith
S2: Statement from Gail Brown
Q1 -6: Questions from Emma Boyes
Q7: Question from Nuala Aabe, Autism Independence
The Chair read out a statement from the school Ms Smith’s statement refers to, and the Commission noted its content.
The following replies were given to supplementary questions from Emma Boyes:
Supplementary question (reference to Q3): What is the reason for the increase of EHCP completions in Q3?
Answer: Recruitment of education psychologist and efficiencies.
Supplementary question (reference to Q4): Will these figures be available?
Answer: Yes, there will be an update data dashboard produced and the data will also available on the local offer website.
Supplementary question (reference to Q6): Are there more barriers preventing increasing speed of output of EHCPs than capacity of staff?
Answer: Yes, although the main one is staff capacity. Others include the fact that systems and process are not as efficient as they should be; the ongoing co-production will make this more streamlined.
The following replies were given to supplementary questions from Nuala Aabe:
Supplementary question (reference to Q7): What systems do we have in place to ensure BAME communities, and other groups, can access services?
Answer: We need to look at JSNA; Public Health colleagues provide information on cohorts including disabled children and young people. We would like to learn from the health improvement team. We have CYP programme board for health; we need to ensure information about communities is up to date. We are developing joint commissioning through the STP which helps.
That the public forum business be noted.
The following points were made:
· Reference to BCP280, Increase the % of people who contact Adult Social Care and then receive Tiers 1 & 2 services:
o There was a long way to go; integrated community hubs were being developed.
o This could be seen as a baseline to refer to until we begin to work together in integrated teams, which would show the added value of working in multi-disciplinary teams.
o Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care stated that this was an ambitious target.
· Reference to DPE005a, Increase the percentage of adults receiving direct payments:
o Cabinet Member for Adult Social Care told the Commission that some Local Authorities have been more ambitious around direct payments.
o SMEs to be on the list of approved providers; organisations needed support; there had been sessions with commissioners working with very small organisations with a view to be on the list for providers.
· Reference to BCP263a, Reduce the % of young people of academic age 16 to 17 years who are NEET & destination unknown:
o There was a need to investigate the data further.
o The data included ‘destination unknown’ which was difficult to track.
o The NEET and destination unknown was a national definition; it could be possible to disaggregate the data.
· Reference to BCP212, Reduce the number of adolescents (aged 13-17) who need to enter care due to abuse or exploitation:
o The figure was accumulative; there was a slight increase;
o There had been an increase in unaccompanied young people.
o BCC had less impact on outcomes with older children; more focus on building resilience, keeping them in families.
o BCC had the third lowest rate of children in care in core cities; this was not the case three years ago.
o Cabinet Member for Children and Young People said it was important we saw social care as part of a whole offer to young people, which included the children’s centres, parenting support, early years support; strengthening whole family, to avoid the need to go into care; there was a focus on early intervention.
o The Commission was advised that early intervention was key.
· Reference to BCP222, Increase the take-up of free early educational entitlement by eligible 2 year olds:
o This was positive; and a priority.
· Reference to BCP253, Increase the number of attendances at BCC leisure centres and swimming pools:
o Care leavers were able to access leisure centres free.
o Concern about substantial drop in access.
o We were trying to reacquaint people with what’s on offer; there was a need to be better at social media.
o There was a new sport and leisure strategy.
o Deputy Mayor, Communities (Public Health, Public Transport, Libraries, Parks), Events and Equalities, stated that the contract with the current provider was coming to an end; that there had been a review and it was sensible for centres to be managed by external providers; BCC would be specific about the offer to be delivered; and that one centre was temporarily ... view the full minutes text for item 7.
The Director of Children and Families Services provided a summary. During the ensuing discussion the following points were made;
· Home office, PCC, and Mayoral funding enabled to move from response in East Bristol to city wide.
· Important to understand the young people and families so as to engage with them.
· Fits with Adverse Childhood Experiences work; inclusion work in schools; emerging work on inclusion and belonging strategy.
· Community mentors have been developed - credible members of community trusted by young people.
· The strategy has been based upon community-led intelligence – straight from communities.
· Utilised a ‘challenge and support’ approach in schools; for example, there had been a new protocol for when a child brought knife into school. This had happened with 4 young people, who had, through challenge and support, been able to stay in school, which was very positive.
· Cabinet Member for Children and Young People said that Safer Options had improved understanding of situations and provided a positive way to take hold of situations; and thanked the team.
· Cabinet Member for Communities said that the project was set up very quickly; partnership working had been brilliant, enabled by excellent work by the Police
· Community work had been positive – It Takes a Village – enabling community response.
· There had been funding for youth justice support to bridge the gap in partnership working with the Youth Offending Team; the vision was to make it more integrated.
· Member was invited to spend time with the Safer Options team.
· The was a discussion around fixed term exclusions and whether there was information that showed a link, and the Commission was advised that there were information security issues and so identifying whether the Council was working with young people at risk or who had been excluded was challenging; Information sharing with the Police was equally important.
· Permanent exclusions had reduced, there was now a focus on fixed term; data would be discussed at the Standards Board for City, Excellence in Schools Board. This data would link in to the Safer Options team to enable early intervention.
· ACE (Adverse Childhood Experiences) work was being looked at due to a concern about children’s behaviours being as a result of trauma. The practice was to avoid re-traumatising children.
The Chair thanked all those involved in planning and delivering the SEND Evidence Day, and for all who engaged with it.
The Chair summarised the report and during the ensuing discussion the following
points were made;
· Director of Education and Skills had sight of early draft of the report so it could inform the working up of the Written Statement of Action. This was done with the agreement of the Party Leads.
· There was a need to look at how to make the scrutiny process more accessible to diverse communities and different cohorts of people in the city.
· Key was parent carers involvement; co-production was essential moving forward; important that Bristol reflected what parents and carers have asked for and what they needed. Parents and carers have identified better templates from other Local Authorities which should be looked at. The template was important as constructive responses from parents reliant on what was being asked, and the language being right.
· Director of Education and Skills advised the Commission that there would be references to the Commission’s recommendations in the Written Statement of Action.
· That the Director of Education provide a written response to the report.
· That the Commission adopt the report and recommendations subject to the following additions:
(i) A statement should be added to the report about the poor communication between parents, Council, and schools;
(ii) SEND training for all governors to focus on funding to help enable transparency;
(iii) The EHCP must be simplified, utilising standard templates where appropriate.
· That the report and recommendation go to Cabinet on the 3 March 2020 for consideration.
The report was noted.
The Commission was advised that fixed term exclusions could include child sent home lunch time; there was no clear link with permanent exclusions
That Fixed Term Exclusions be considered on the work programme 2020-21; with report to include information clarifying data around BAME and SEN exclusions.
The Report was noted.
The Commission thanked the team for their work on this important project.
The work programme for 2019-20 was noted.
The Action Tracker was noted. All actions had been completed.