Hounslow Council

Agenda and minutes

Venue: Committee Rooms 1 & 2, Civic Centre, Lampton Road, Hounslow

Contact: Wendy Merry, 020 8583 2061, Email: wendy.merry@hounslow.gov.uk 

No. Item


Minutes of the meeting held on 25 September 2017 pdf icon PDF 133 KB


Minutes of the meeting held on 25 September 2017 (agenda item 3) were agreed.


Matters Arising


Mike Nicholls noted that proper arrangements had been made by the LBH (London Borough of Hounslow) for contracts of employment, but he still had concerns about other issues, for example, dismissals. It was confirmed that the LBH HR (Human Resources) Business Partner would sign all contracts and variations of contracts. It was acknowledged that a briefing had been sent around to schools in relation to the changes in HR, but agreed that further correspondence would be sent to ensure that schools were aware of the changes. Michael Marks, Director of Education and Early Intervention, advised that he would ask Steve Williams from HR to provide some information to schools and it was agreed that the information would be shared with the Chair of Schools Forum and Mike Nicholls before it was sent out. Christine Holland, Head of Strategic Finance also advised that the service level agreement remained unchanged except for changes to contact details and this would be reissued to schools (item 3, page 1 refers).


RituAulakh raised concerns on behalf of colleagues about the clawback of monies from schools; she felt that there had not been any advanced warning and that the return should be sufficiently robust in the event of clawback taking place.


The Chair advised that school balances had been discussed over a considerable amount of time and was well trailed. He also reminded Members that the clawback was to ensure that funding was being used on children currently in the school and relieve budget pressures. It was noted that the form for returns was being revised (item 7 page 2 refers)


Christine Holland provided the Schools Forum with an update about Financial Regulations (item 6, page 2 refers).


Schools Forum Membership update - verbal Update


The Schools Forum noted that there were vacancies for a Primary Maintained School representative and a Roman Catholic Diocesan representative.


Feedback from the meeting with Nick Gibb, Schools Minister - verbal report


Councillor Bruce fed back on the meeting with the Schools Minister. He advised that Ruth Cadbury would be writing to the Minister, outlining the points made and that he would be happy to share the response with the Schools Forum.


2017/18 DSG budget monitoring pdf icon PDF 176 KB


See report by Christine Holland, Head of Strategic Finance and Rupa Raghwani, Finance Manager (agenda item 5)


Rupa Raghwani, Finance Manager, highlighted the main points in the report and responded to questions.




            That the forecasted outturn position be noted.


SEND review update - presentation pdf icon PDF 429 KB


Annita Cornish, Head of Service Special Educational Needs and Disability, made the presentation. She advised that a more detailed analysis would be provided to the next meeting and it would include information about the uptake of places and issues in special schools.


Early years update pdf icon PDF 113 KB


See report by Chrissie Elam, Head of Early Years and Childcare (agenda item 7)


Rupa Raghwani presented the report and responded to questions.




a)    That the update on the take up of early years places be noted.

b)    That the challenges with accurate projections in relation to forecasting the demand for childcare places be noted and that the impact of those challenges be emphasised to the Schools Minister, although it was acknowledged that it was unlikely to affect timescales for this year.


2018/19 National Funding Formula update - verbal report pdf icon PDF 348 KB


Christine Holland made the presentation and responded to questions. She highlighted two options for reducing high needs costs for 2018/19 and ask the Schools Forum for their views. Option one was to transfer between the schools and high needs block and implement some measures to reduce high needs costs via the SEND review and option two was to manage pressures within the high needs block via the SEND review. Following some discussion the Schools Forum agreed that they would steer towards option two. Michael Marks advised that option two would also be the Local Authority’s preference.


Schools Forum Forward Plan pdf icon PDF 150 KB


The report was noted.


Date of Next Meeting is 27 November 2017


The date of the next meeting was noted.


Any other urgent business


Roger Shortt tabled a paper in relation to Hounslow’s compliance with school and early years financial regulations. He had concerns that Hounslow may not be recovering funding from neighbouring boroughs, when children were moved to the Pupil Referral Unit and asked for a paper to be provided to the November meeting.