Members are asked to agree the recommendations contained in the final report of ‘Improving the experience and outcome of Pupil Premium (double disadvantaged) children’ Task and Finish Group.
Report to follow.
The Chairman gave thanks to Cllr Hamilton for all her hard work as Chairman of this Task and Finish Group.
Cllr Hamilton began by thanking Nikki Edwards, Executive Director: People, Rachel Morgan, Assistant Director: Education and Learning and Zoe Livingstone, School Standards and Effectiveness Partner for their input. She also thanked Councillors who participated in the Task and Finish Group; the staff and children for their honesty when speaking to Councillors during their visits and Louise Connelly, Governance & Scrutiny Co-ordinator as they had all worked hard on this piece of work.
Cllr Hamilton explained the Local Authority ‘Learning Improvement Strategy’ identified ‘Diminishing the Difference for Disadvantaged Pupils’ as one the three main priorities for the Council. Coupled with information given to members at previous Children, Young People and Learning Overview & Scrutiny Panel meetings it has been agreed this issue required a more detailed investigation and should form part of the Panel’s work programme in June 2018.
Members identified a number of key strands of work including leadership, particularly governance, as well as ensuring additional funding for children in receipt of Pupil Premium funding (or who have been in receipt of free school meals at any point during the past 6 years or were children looked after by the local authority for one day or more) were obtaining the best outcomes possible.
As part of their work members put together a survey which was sent to all schools in the Borough; interviewed Local Authority officers and visited six Bracknell schools. In addition, they visited Didcot Girls School in Oxfordshire which was rated outstanding and had excellent results in terms of diminishing the difference between pupils in receipt of Pupil Premium funding and the rest of their cohort.
After analysing all the information members noted areas of strength and weaknesses. The report made 12 recommendations which could be found on page 18 of the report. Examples of recommendations included requesting the Council continue to develop the role of governors and ensure all possible actions were taken to improve attendance of pupils in receipt of Pupil Premium funding.
Zoe Livingstone, School Standards and Effectiveness Partner said she thought working with members on the Task and Finish Group had been beneficial both ways. Members had been effective by giving a sharper focus on where officers should their effort and she was proud of the work achieved by the Panel.
Following discussion the following comments were made:
RESOLVED to approve the recommendations contained in the final report of the Task and Finish Group: ‘Improving the experience and outcome of Pupil Premium (double disadvantaged) children’.