The Director of Community and Children’s Services to be heard.
The Board received a verbal update on the Schools Bill from the Director of Community and Children’s services. Members were updated on the following points:
a) There had been 68 changes to the bill.
b) The main recommendations relate to religious schools.
c) The articles of association of a relevant Academy proprietor must be updated to contain the provision: “An Academy agreement or master agreement (including an agreement entered into before this section comes into force) is void as far as it is inconsistent with any provision made by or under this Part and is to be read with such modifications as are necessary to take account.”
d) Section 15 refers to securing 16 to 19 year-old places. Members were informed that the City Corporation has two new sixth form provisions due to open in September. However, as the decision to open predates the Schools Bill, it would only apply to new post-16 provision going forward.
e) The government is proposing to be tougher on children absent from school, particularly where parents are not supportive of attendance. This includes serving parents and schools with attendance orders.
Members were informed of the following omissions from the Schools Bill:
a) It does not mention that all schools should be academised.
b) It does not mention the number of schools in a Multi Academy Trust (MAT).
c) It does not refer to the enhanced powers of MAT inspection.
d) There is no requirement for MATs to have a pupil referral unit and their own special education provision.
e) It does not mention enhanced school hours.
f) It does not mention the £30,000 minimum starting wage for teachers.
In response to a query from a Member, the Board was informed that it is not currently a requirement for schools to become academies, although it was noted that this requirement may return in the future.
RESOLVED – That the update be noted.