Hounslow Council


Agenda and minutes

Venue: Committee Room 1, Civic Centre, Lampton Road, Hounslow. View directions

Contact: Chaspal Sandhu on 020 8583 2065 email:  chaspal.sandhu@hounslow.gov.uk 

Items
No. Item

177.

Welcome, Introductions and Apologies for Absence

Minutes:

Apologies for absence were noted.

178.

Membership

Minutes:

Sheena Poley, Head of Place Planning and Admissions, advised that it had been difficult to recruit a Parent Governor to the School Admissions Forum. She advised that she would contact the Governing Bodies section at the Council to try to recruit another Parent Governor to sit on the Forum, if that approach was unsuccessful, the Council would make contact with the school’s PTAs. If unsuccessful, The Chair asked for this item to be discussed at the next meeting to consider other options. 

 

179.

Minutes of the meeting held on 7 March 2016 pdf icon PDF 156 KB

Minutes:

The minutes of the meeting held on 7 March 2016 were agreed as an accurate record.

 

 

Matters Arising:

 

Ms Poley advised that the Local Authority was still waiting to find out about the Rivers Academy determination. The adjudicator had a hearing in June to consider the feeder school criteria. Ms Poley advised that she would feedback to the Admissions Forum once the decision was made by the adjudicator.

 

 

 

180.

Update on the Secondary Admissions for 2016 - verbal update

Minutes:

Sheena Poley gave an update on secondary admissions for 2016. She advised that the Local Authority had predicted a shortfall of places and as a result 55 additional places were added into various schools across the Borough. It had been necessary to offer places over the admission number at Springwest, Isleworth and Syon School and Kingsley Academy. The Green School for Girls had also agreed to take an extra class. 

 

Currently, there were approximately 30 vacancies in schools across the Borough with a higher concentration of vacancies at Springwest Feltham. In response to questions, Ms Poley advised that every child that applied had been offered a place at a school. There was a higher turnover in schools where the school had been offered as an alternative to a higher preference. She advised that since the beginning of September a further 130 places had been offered.

 

In response to a question about the number of appeals, the Forum was advised that overall the number of appeals submitted had dropped a little. However, in comparison to other Boroughs, such as Richmond, Hounslow had received approximately the same number of appeals.

181.

Verbal update on the Primary Admissions for 2016 - verbal update

Minutes:

Sheena Poley gave a verbal update on the primary admissions for 2016. She advised that 94.32% of children were offered one of their three preferences. The move to online applications had been very successful, with 99.64% of applications completed online. Only 13 people completed a paper application. The London Borough of Hounslow was one of the few authorities to have achieved close to 100% applications submitted online.

 

In response to questions, Ms Poley advised that online applications were easier to cross check against council tax records to stop fraudulent applications.

 

Currently, there were approximately 34 vacancies in reception classes across the Borough with a higher concentration of vacancies at William Hogarth School in Chiswick.

182.

Local Authority Report 2016 to Office of Schools Adjudicator pdf icon PDF 338 KB

Minutes:

Sheena Poley presented the Local Authority Annual Report to the Office of Schools Adjudicator. She advised that the report was a statutory requirement and that there had been very few changes in this report from the previous year.

 

The report outlined that the Local Authority had made twelve objections to admission arrangements including the criteria for summer born children, the deferral of a place and the admission criteria for Rivers Academy.

 

In response to questions about deferral, Ms Poley advised that in 2015 there had been one request for deferral of a reception place. In 2016 there had been eight requests to defer and four of the requests had been agreed. She advised that the requests to defer were often assessed under the social/medical criterion and documentation to support the request was required. Kathryn Harper-Quinn felt that deferral of a reception place could be very beneficial for some children who were just not ready to start school.

 

In response to concerns, Ms Poley advised that with a deferred place the children would not miss a year of education and that they would continue with the cohort that they started with all the way through to the end of their education.

 

Resolved:

 

That the report was noted.

183.

Revised Secondary, Primary and Special School Projections July 2016 pdf icon PDF 225 KB

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Ms Poley presented the most recent school projections that were produced in July 2016. The projections highlighted that the growth was outstripping the permanent capacity. In order to meet the need for places the following changes would be introduced:

 

·         A rebuild of Kingsley Academy in 2017 would provide 2.4 extra forms of entry.

·         There would be a small change in capacity at the Green School for Girls.

·         The Green School for Boys would initially be opening with 4 forms of entry in 2017, increasing to 6 forms of entry in 2018

·         The Bolder Academy would be opening in 2018 with 5 forms of entry increasing to 6 forms of entry in 2019.

·         Nishkam would begin to take secondary applications in 2018 with an additional 3.3 forms of entry.

·         There would be a further 3.2 forms of entry at Chiswick Academy.

·         There would be a further 3.2 forms of entry at Isleworth & Syon.

·         There would also be a second Reach Academy providing an additional 3 forms of entry. Reach 2 would be located on the MoD site in Feltham but a date of opening had not yet been confirmed.

 

Therefore, it was projected that there would be an additional 22.2 forms of entry across the Borough by 2023. The data used to complete the projections were the latest birth trend figures.

 

Michael Marks advised that the London Borough of Hounslow had agreed to take part in a pilot for secondary place planning for London Council’s.

 

7.30pm – Councillor Green left the meeting.

 

Ms Poley advised that the projections identified that school places in Feltham were a cause for concern. There were new housing developments being built in Feltham as part of the Feltham Masterplan which would have a direct impact on local schooling and the number of places required.

 

The Chair expressed concern that the projections had highlighted that there would be a surplus of places in 2017/2018. Ms Poley advised that the bulge year could be reversed and there could be a reduction of a form if necessary. She advised that the census data could be brought back to the Forum for further consideration if required. Michael Marks advised that he would share the data at the Primary Partnership meetings in the spring

184.

Primary and Secondary Admissions for 2017

Minutes:

Ms Poley gave an update on the Primary and Secondary Admissions for 2017. She advised that the online system for primary and secondary applications was now open and drop in sessions for help and support were available. The Forum was advised that 300 applications had already been submitted.

 

·         The closing date for secondary applications was 11th October 2016 and 1st March 2017 was the secondary transfer offer day.

·         The closing date for primary applications was 15th January 2017 and 18th April 2017 was the primary transfer offer day.

185.

Statutory guidance on Children Missing Education pdf icon PDF 351 KB

Minutes:

Sheena Poley presented the Statutory guidance for local authorities on children missing education. The guidance came into effect on 1st September 2016.

 

She advised that all schools including independent schools were required to notify the Local Authority when children were missing education. The schools were required to notify the Local Authority of a child’s name, address and telephone number of parent/guardian before taking the child off-roll. Schools were also required to demonstrate that they had made a number of attempts to contact the parents/guardian. There was a ‘toolkit’ to complete for off-roll and on-roll children. Ms Poley advised that the Local Authority was hoping to roll out the new ‘toolkit’ by the end of next week.

 

The Forum had a discussion about children truanting from school. Michael Marks advised that if children were truanting the Council’s Education Welfare Officers would get involved and would start to carry out home visits. There were also some children electively being home-schooled. The Local Authority had a responsibility to know where all of the children of school age in the Borough were, unfortunately, if a child was not registered it was impossible to know if they were missing education.

 

Resolved:

 

That the report was noted.

 

186.

Update on School Expansion Programme

Minutes:

Ms Poley presented an update on the School Expansion Programme.

 

In terms of the primary school places, the following schools would be expanding:

·         There would be a complete rebuild of Hounslow Town Primary School in 2017.

·         Wellington Primary School would be expanding on split sites in 2017.

·         Floreat had temporarily opened in Trico House but would be moving to a permanent site in 2018. 

·         Edison Primary School had opened in temporary accommodation on the site in September 2016.

 

In terms of the secondary school places, the following schools would be expanding:

·         There would be an additional 2.4 forms of entry in Kingsley Academy

·         The Green School for Boys would be opening in 2017 with 4 forms of entry and would be located on the former Woodbridge Park site.

·         The opening of the Bolder Academy had been deferred to 2018. It would be initially opening with 4 forms of entry in 2018 and 6 forms of entry in 2019.

 

In terms of the special schools, the following schools would be expanding:

·         There would be a part expansion of Lindon Bennett school.

·         Works to expand capacity at The Marjory Kinnon school were not yet underway.

·         The expansion of Cedars was complete.

 

Ms Poley advised that the projections for the special schools were currently being finalised with the SEN teams.

 

187.

Update on Free Schools and Academies pdf icon PDF 401 KB

Minutes:

Michael Marks advised that there were two potential free school applications that would come through in the next round:

·         Twickenham Free School (West London Free School Trust)

·         Hounslow Community Free School (Sikh Excellence Trust)

188.

Timetable for the consultation on 2018 Admission arrangements

Minutes:

Ms Poley advised that the timetable for the consultation on 2018 Admission Arrangements was a document to remind the non-Local Authority schools that they were required to determine their admission arrangements.

189.

Any Other Business

Minutes:

·         Ms Poley advised that it was likely that the criteria for Summer Born would be revisited in the School Admissions Code as there were still aspects being considered.

·         The Forum was advised that it was likely that a co-ordinated approach for in-year/term time applications could be introduced.

·         A consultation was currently open to consider the polices for linked schools and transfers from infant to junior school. The policy was due to be reviewed as it had not been reviewed since 2008. 

190.

Date of the next meeting - 20 March 2017

Minutes:

The date of the next meeting was noted as 20 March 2017.