Issue - meetings

Review of Schools Forum Membership

Meeting: 10/07/2019 - Schools Forum (Item 63)

Review of Schools Forum Membership

To consider the Schools Forum Membership Review report.


This report requires a decision.

Additional documents:


Luciane Bowker, Democratic and Electoral Services Specialist presented the Review of Schools Forum Membership report.


Paul Miller stated that the report had been produced following a meeting with himself, Brian Prebble and Luciane Bowker.


Luciane Bowker stated that the review sought to ensure that the membership continued to fairly represent the schools’ make up in the Borough.  Schools Forum membership was supposed to reflect the types and phases of schools, as well as the number of pupils.  Many schools had converted to academy and this should be reflected in the membership.


Luciane Bowker stated that the report proposed a reduced number of members (as described on page 4 of the supplementary agenda report), in recognition of the fact that large groups are more difficult to manage and decisions are more difficult to be made.


Some members had not seen the paper, Luciane Bowker explained that this was published as a supplementary agenda item.  Copies of the report were circulated and members decided to carry on with the discussion of the item.


Luciane Bowker stated that the report proposed to continue with a non-specified duration of terms of office.  It had been Forum’s decision in the past that it was preferable to retain the expertize of members in the Forum.


Luciane Bower informed that the post 16 education provider representative post was now vacant and Schools Forum had to choose a new representative.


Luciane Bowker pointed out that the report proposed to eliminate the places for the Catholic and Church of England representatives.  Those representations were discretionary.


Luciane Bowker also pointed out that the report proposed to reduce the Early Years representation to 1.


Luciane Bowker stated that Schools Forum was a public meeting and that anyone could attend, the change in membership affected only speaking and voting rights.  In response to a question Luciane Bowker stated that the press was allowed to attend Schools Forum meeting.  However, historically the press had never attended.


During the discussion of the item the following comments were made:


·           Karen Edwards was concerned with the reduction in the number of Early Years representatives.  She stated that although Kerry Clifford of Ambleside Centre was a Headteacher of a nursery school, she did not represent the private providers sector.  Therefore in her opinion if the Early Years representation was reduced to 1, this should be a Private Voluntary and Independent (PVI) representative;

·           It was not possible to ascertain where Ambleside School should sit in terms of the membership, given that it was partly funded by the Local Authority;

·           Members asked how the places for academies were determined, whether this was per school or per trust.  Paul Miller stated that the places were based on the number of pupils in schools, so the schools could choose who they sent to represent them;

·           Paul Miller pointed out that representations ‘belonged’ to the school and not to individuals.  It was preferable to have a mixture of Headteachers, Governors and Business Mangers. 


Schools Forum agreed with the proposal contained in the  ...  view the full minutes text for item 63