Just a brief report from today’s Schools Forum meeting. I think the main areas of interest for readers of this blog will be:
- “Spend to Save” proposals for more in-county provision for SEN pupils
I again raised the disproportionate level of funding requirement falling on primary schools for this project, projected at 0.78% reduction in AWPU for primaries compared to 0.52% to 0.54% for secondaries. I was promised that this will discussed in depth when budgeting to take forward the project in the new year.
- Scheme for Financing Schools
I raised my concern that the county scheme for financing schools applies a de minimis level of £10k for capital expenditure, rather than a rate proportional to school size. I was told that this had been previously discussed and the intention was to have a per pupil rate rather than a flat rate; this will be corrected and circulated to Forum.
- Significant Increase in Pupil Numbers Contingency
I was misquoted in the minutes of the last Schools Forum as wondering whether the bar for accessing this contingencies in secondaries should be raised. What I actually said was that primaries should not be put at a disadvantage in accessing this contingency (currently large primaries need to have more pupils join in year than secondaries before they can access the funding). This matter has been rolled over to the next meeting in the new year.
Other minor issues of interest:
- Amended ToRs mean that governing bodies (rather than schools) will now vote for governor representatives on Forum. I asked that the election regulations be amended so that if there are multiple vacancies, then each school/GB gets a number of votes equal to the number of vacancies. This was agreed.