Agenda item

Quarterly Performance Report - Quarter 1, 2022/23


The Commission considered and discussed the quarter 1 2022/23 performance report.  It was noted that this report had been prepared in line with the new corporate approach to performance reporting, with performance progress tracked under each of the themes in the Council’s Corporate Strategy, plus a data appendix specific for the Commission; in relation to the performance metrics and actions reported for this quarter against the People Scrutiny Commission remit:

- 25% of priority measures were on or above target (4 of 16).

- 57% of priority measures had improved (8 of 14).

- 83% of actions were currently on track or better (24 of 29).


It was noted that members had submitted the following questions/points in advance of the meeting (these are set out below together with written responses from officers):


a. Questions / points raised in advance by Cllr Townsend


1. Covering report: Theme 1 - NEET

‘If these children are NEET, then how is university their next step? Is this the intention of this wording or is this about aspiration? If aspiration, what does the evidence tell us about those who are NEET aged 17-18 moving into university?’


Officer written response:

This comment in the cover report (linked to CYP Theme) is in relation to “BPOM217: 17-18 year-old Care Leavers in EET”, not related to NEETs.  Apologies if this wasn’t clear.


2. Covering report: Theme 2 - work for priority groups

‘A key group for this city is supporting those with learning difficulties into paid work – what are these pathways?  How do these conjunct with the WECA responsibilities? Is this ‘WE WORK’?  Or is this programme at the Bristol level? Whilst WECA do not fund the EHCP plans for those up to the age of 25, most young people will have their plans terminated long before the year they turn 25, so how is the adult learning element of the WECA responsibility and funding targeted at this group and is this effective?’


Officer written response:

This relates to priority BPPM270 and the provision of targeted experiences of work for young people pre-16 delivered by the Bristol WORKS Team. The Bristol WORKS team is funded through a mix of external funders including WECA as part of their West of England Careers Hub. By providing career inspiration and information, the team are supporting young people most at risk of becoming NEET to achieve improved post-16 pathways and outcomes. The WORKS Team is also contributing to delivery of the WE Work for Everyone programme through specific activities for young disabled people with learning difficulties and autism.

In relation to adult learning provision for young people whose EHCP has ceased, WECA are responsible for commissioning the Adult Education Budget for learners aged 19+. The City of Bristol College are the main provider of programmes for learners with high needs in Bristol. At their last full inspection in 2019, they were awarded ‘Good’ status.


3. Covering report: Theme 5 - related to the above:

‘WE WORK: how/is this different from Theme 2 work for priority groups? 

EHCP – where is the data and monitoring of the annual reviews?  I will continue to ask this until we have a full picture of the EHCP system – assessment and final plan issue is only the start of this system’


Officer written response:

a. WE Work for Everyone is the ESF/WECA funded programme supporting disabled people with learning difficulties and autism into employment.

Bristol WORKS is delivering a pre-16 experience of work programme for priority groups, which also includes young people with SEND, including disabled people with learning difficulties and autism.

(Note: definition of “priority groups” includes: Young people at risk of and currently not engaging in education, employment and training, children in care or care leavers, people with a learning difficulty and/or disability, people with a disability, Black, Asian and other non-white minority backgrounds, returning to work, living in the 25% most deprived lower super output areas, over 55).


b. Re: EHCP data and monitoring of the annual reviews:

A specific performance metric - “PE415: Increase the percentage of annual reviews completed within timescale” - was set up in April 2020, with a view to start recording data in April 2021.  However, only quarter 1 2021/22 was reported (at 35.8 %), noting this was establishing an initial baseline. 

After the first round of reporting, it became clear that the data reporting systems were not accurate, and so reporting was suspended. Over the last 18 months, officers have been developing an electronic casework system to ensure accurate annual review reporting.   Annual review reporting is complex with multiple facets, which is a national issue, and the Department for Education has historically not sought data in this area for this reason. The decision was taken not to report on annual review data as recording systems required development and until completed, the accuracy of the data could not be relied upon.

From January 2023, the DfE will start to ask for basic annual review information as part of the census (SEN2) return.  Subsequent IT developments and work with schools will enable the authority to deliver on its statutory duties and has improved its data. With annual reviews, partnership working is vital (with schools and all professionals) to improve timeliness and quality of meetings and EHC plans as a result.


4. Appendix A1: Clinic Report - Children & Young People

BPOM217 – ‘Why is only the Virtual School mentioned here? Not all 17/18 year olds are/were children in care and not all children in care are NEET, what is the other work being done for this group?

School absence – the 22/23 academic year is now well into Term 2, what are the early indications of the effectiveness of this strategy?’


Officer written response:

There is a typographical error in the CYP Clinic report which says “BPOM217 – 17-18 year-old NEETS” when it should say “BPOM217 – 17-18 year-old care leavers in EET”.  This is why the comment refers to the Virtual School.  Apologies for the confusion this has caused.


Note: At the meeting, the Interim Director of Education and Skills added that school absence data for terms 1 and 2 of the current academic year would be available in the new year. This data (which would be added to through the remaining terms) would inform assessment of the effectiveness of the school absence strategy.


5. Appendix A1: Clinic Report - Economy and Skills

a. ‘Apprentices – how are the priority groups, including those with learning difficulties, being targeted with this element?’


Officer written response:

The Employment, Skills and Learning Team were managing the BCC apprenticeship function up until August 2022. The team were successful in targeting priority groups through a range of mechanisms: targeted career events in priority schools; working with the Council’s employee-led groups; promoting apprenticeships through jobs fairs and post-16 services. Out of 186 apprentice starts since April 2021, 35% were aged 16-24, 7.26% were disabled young people; 15% were from Black and minoritised groups; 7% were care leavers; 31% were from Bristol’s most deprived wards. From September 1st, this function was relocated to the Council’s HR team as part of the Common Activities programme.


b. ‘Proposal – developers actively targeting workforce from deprived areas – how are these developers creating pathways for those with learning difficulties?’


Officer written response:

Building Bristol is a new strategic programme, supported through changes to the Council’s planning rules, requiring major developers to work with the Employment, Skills and Learning team on the production of robust employment and skills plans. Officers are starting to create stronger working links between developers at both construction and end use phase with our different programmes – including We Work for Everyone and Bristol WORKS. Whilst it is too early to show impact, we are confident that this will include new employment opportunities for disabled people with learning difficulties and autism.


6. Appendix A1: Clinic Report - Home and Communities

‘Why are EHCPs included in this area/section?’


Officer written response:

This is following the BCC Corporate Strategy structure which places “Disability” as “Home and Communities, Priority 4”, reflecting the social model of disability; a focus on “Our Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND) improvement programme” is included within the Disability Priority (Home and Communities 4) and so the metric on EHCPs is shown here.


Note: in discussion at the meeting, it was noted that this matter could be kept under review so that this metric was included within the most appropriate section of the performance report.


b. Question / point raised in advance by Cllr Wye

Re: Appendix A1: Clinic Report - Health, Care & Wellbeing

‘A question on adults (BPPM291a & b) - whilst there are improvements, we are still below target for placing less people in tier 3/residential.  

I wonder if this is due to difficulties in getting home care and care managers having to place people by default.  And if so, is the trend going to get worse?’


Officer response at the meeting:

This performance figure is improving and is better than the same period last year.  There is now a reduction in the number of older people in residential care homes, with an increase in older people receiving care in their own homes.  The position in terms of residential home care supply/availability has also improved since last year.  Further detail of the data via Power BI can be made available on request.


c. Question / point raised in advance by Councillor Lisa Stone

Re: Appendix A1: Clinic Report - Economy and Skills

Question on the action & comment: “Create more jobs and skills training in construction through the new Building Bristol initiative – Building Bristol launched on 25th April and has 14 large developments engaged in discussions to create Employment and Skills plans.” 

‘Will this include sustainable retrofitting carbon reduction skills needed in construction?’


Officer written response:

Building Bristol is working with developers to create employment and skills plans at construction and end use phase for all major developments.  These are expected to incorporate the development of skills for new construction technologies. Also, Building Bristol is working closely with City Leap and the BCC/Ameresco team to develop training of a skilled retrofit workforce, starting in 2023, working together with key local employment and skills services e.g. One Front Door, On Site Bristol and local colleges.



The following additional questions/points were then raised at the meeting:


1. BPPM225e (Education, Health and Care plans): Cllr Bailes queried whether the quality of plans had improved.  In discussion, the Chair commented that through the recent Ofsted Joint area SEND revisit, the inspector had commented that the quality of plans had improved; it was also noted that through the ‘time for change’ project, ‘new style’ plans were being produced, utilising the portal which was now in place.


2. P?HCW3.1 (Delivery of Fuel Poverty action plan): In response to a question from Cllr Weston, it was noted that the effectiveness of measures was being kept under review, also in the context of winter pressures.


3. BPPM266 (Increase % of adults with learning difficulties known to social care who are in paid employment): In response to a query from the Chair, Cllr Holland outlined details of We Work For Everyone, a free employment support programme for people with a learning difficulty and autistic people (Note: subsequent to the meeting, a web link to the programmeHome - We Work For Everyone was circulated to members).


4. BPPM294 (Increase % of regulated CQC Care Service providers where provision is rated 'Good or Better’): Cllr Massey welcomed the fact that performance was significantly above target, noting also the commentary that Bristol was continuing to be a top performer on quality of care based on the CQC ratings with 96.2% of care service providers rated good or better by CQC.


5. P?EDO1.1 (Work with the universities in Bristol and the Further Education sector to create a written Civic University Agreement): Cllr Weston asked for further detail on this priority.

(Note: following the meeting, the following background information was obtained:

- Along with 30 other universities, the University of Bristol has committed to developing a Civic University Agreement, by working with local government, businesses and community organisations to incorporate the needs of the city into its strategic plans.  The agreement is one of several recommendations made by the Civic University Commission in a report published in 2019 that sets out how universities have the capability, opportunity and responsibility to support the people and places that surround them.

- In discussions with Bristol City Council, it was suggested this activity could bring together UWE and the City of Bristol College into a joint agreement, with UoB, UWE, CoBC and the Council as core signatories. The Civic University Agreement is focused on the input and engagement of the University as the institution rather than students directly.

- A Bristol Civic University Agreement is likely to see addressing inequalities in education, skills and employment as an initial focus for the first two years covered by the agreement.)


The Commission RESOLVED:

- To note the report and the above information.


Supporting documents: