Front Lawn Primary Academy
Broadmere Avenue, Leigh Park, Havant, Hampshire, PO9 5HX
Telephone: 023 9247 5904
Minutes of the Local Governing Committee Meeting 4.7.17
PRESENT: Kirsty Ballantyne (KB)
Geoff Conway (GC)
Janette McClintock (JMcC) – Head of School, Upper School
Lainey Franks (LF) - Chair - until 1135
IN ATTENDANCE: Helen Evison – Clerk
Andy Sillence (AM)
Sarah Read (SR) - Deputy Head
APOLOGIES: Barbara Batey (BB)
Kate Couldwell (KC) – Head of School, Lower School
James Munt (JM) – Executive Head
Pete Neville (PN)
The meeting opened at 1005
APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE
Apologies were received and accepted from BB, KC and JM. GC explained that JM was no longer planning to attend local committee meetings as a matter of routine.
DECLARATION OF INTERESTS
Governors noted the standing declarations:
- JM is also Executive Head at Portfield and Seal Primary Academies.
- HE clerks at other TKAT, SCC and HCC schools.
- GC is Chair of the LGBs of TKAT South and Bridgemary School.
- KB works part time at Front Lawn.
No interest was declared in any specific agenda item.
CHILDREN IN CARE ANNUAL REPORT
Governors noted receipt of the annual report on children in care in school, previously circulated.
Q: GC asked whether the two with poor attendance were from the same family.
A: No, each had separate issues which were explained in the report. Attendance was closely monitored by Sara Walton.
MINUTES OF THE LOCAL COMMITTEE OF 4th & 23rd MAY 2017
The minutes of the LC meetings of 4th and 23rd May 2017 were agreed as accurate records and signed by the Chair.
GC reported that:
- contacts with a couple of people who had expressed an interest in joining the governing body had been unsuccessful.
- and H&S monitoring visit had been carried out; the report was with staff for review and would be circulated shortly. ACTION: GC
Q: LF asked whether an allowance for governor training had been included in the budget.
A: This might be included in the £1,000 budgeted for ‘Governors Expenses’.
To be checked with Hilary Street. ACTION: HE
MINUTES OF TKAT SOUTH EXCOM MEETING OF 23rd MAY 2017
Governors received the draft minutes of the Executive Committee meeting of 23rd May 2017.
GC reported that the presentations by Seal about their therapeutic provision and the ‘wild beach’ curriculum were most interesting. JMcC advised that the play therapist from Seal was now working with three children at Front Lawn.
LF explained that her school focused on communication and leadership in PHSE and offered to invite their pastoral adviser to brief Front Lawn governors.
LC CONSTITUTION & MEMBERSHIP
GC had contacted a potential governor but received no reply. GC suggested that deputy or assistant Heads from other local schools could be good candidates. ACTION: JMcC
Governors discussed whether evening meetings might be more convenient for potential governors. KB offered to contact PN to see whether meeting times were difficult for him. ACTION: KB
GC explained that, on behalf of another school, he had tried to contact 6 potential governors via ‘Inspiring Governance’ but only one had replied. He had asked some questions but then failed to follow-up. The website did not put people into direct contact with each other. GC had spoken with the man who was running the ‘Inspiring Governance’ website and understood that it was being updated. Shortage of governors was a national problem and a risk to the school; the school needed more governors to allow coverage of all areas.
GC explained that the target was for the Local Governing Committee to be full in September and said that, despite poor experience with the website to date, he would try to contact candidates via ‘Inspiring Governance’. ACTION: GC HE asked whether it was difficult to get cover for BB as she had not been to recent meetings. JMcC offered to check. ACTION: JMcC
HE advised that she would calculate the meeting attendance statistics for 2016-17 for the website. ACTION: HE
GC noted that responsibility for completeness and compliance of the school website lay with the governors and advised that co-ordination of the governance elements for TKAT South schools would be considered at the next Executive Committee meeting. ACTION: GC (HE)
EXECUTIVE & LC CHAIRS’ REPORTS & CORRESPONDENCE
There had been no emergency action.
GC advised that TKAT had recently organised schools into regional groups and that the TKAT South schools were now part of the group known as ‘TKAT Coast’.
GC reported that he had attended the TKAT Coast Chairs’ meeting and the NGA Conference. GC found Kevan Collins’ session most useful and interesting; he spoke of research into what worked and didn’t work in schools and gave evidence of the impact of different strategies to raise student achievement. ‘Learning to learn’, reflection, quality feedback and peer tutoring were most successful.
GC drew governors’ attention to the publication, ‘What Governing Boards should expect from School Leaders and What School Leaders should expect from Governing Boards’, previously circulated, and encouraged everyone to read this. ACTION: ALL
GC explained that David Linsell, TKAT Governance, had developed an LGB Year Planner. GC had rewritten this as a list of tasks to be completed and then divided them between TKAT South LGB, the Executive Committee and the Local Governing Committees showing who was responsible for what, Attachment 1. He had then allocated the various tasks to meetings, building a plan for the year, Attachment 2. GC highlighted that, in addition to the meetings in the plan, each school would need to hold a Pay Committee meeting to consider performance related pay increase proposals. Using these models would allow governors to demonstrate that they had covered everything they were supposed to and would allow everyone to prepare well in advance.
Governors agreed to adopt the Outline of Responsibilities and Schedule of Meetings.
GC explained that not everything that governors needed to do was covered in the formal meetings and, in order to fill this gap, he proposed a Governors’ Action Plan. The Action Plan from Bridgemary School, Attachment 3, had been circulated as an example. The Action Plan was in two sections, ‘Standing Monitoring Items’ and ‘School Development items’. The monitoring items all needed to be covered but did not need to be structured exactly as in the example. Governors discussed the items and decided to structure them in four groups:
- CP & Safeguarding
- Finance & Resources and Pupil Premium Expenditure
- H&S and Premises
- Student progress & achievement to include monitoring of groups (e.g. SEND, Pupil Premium impact and the more able)
School development items would be identified from the incoming SDP.
Finally, rather than governors arranging monitoring days on an ad hoc basis GC suggested that all monitoring activities be scheduled on a single ‘Governors’ Day’ each term. This model was in use at Chichester High School where they had found that it was more efficient for staff and had enabled governors to get know staff and each other. LF said that could be difficult for her to take a whole day. However, the idea was agreed in principle. Attempts would be made to find at date at the first Local Governing Committee meeting of the autumn term.
Further to the Head’s Report, Attachment 4, previously circulated JMcC advised that interviews had been held yesterday and an additional teacher appointed for September.
Q: LF asked how many NQTs were at the school.
A: Two had been appointed. Last year there were none and the year before there had been two. Two was fine.
Q: LF asked whether they were selected because they were cheapest or best.
A: It was a balance. NQTs were usually keen. They were happy to take NQTs provided they had sufficient experience and capacity across the school to support them.
LF said that, in her experience, NQTs could fail to control behaviour problems.
JMcC explained that when allocating teachers to classes they would consider which classes needed to make most progress or were likely to need to the most support and would allocate the most experienced teachers to the more needy groups.
Q: Did the replacement of a sports coach with a drama teacher indicate a shift away from sport?
Q: GC asked whether there was much movement in or out.
A: Not much. A few children had left Yr 6 as a consequence of friendship issues and a few had joined Yr 5 for the same reason.
Eight pupils had joined Yr 4 and seven had joined Yr 6. Yr 4 was full. There were spare places only in years 5 and 6. The children joining Yr 6 had affected the results. Two measures had been calculated for TKAT, one for all Yr 6 and the other for ‘home-grown’ pupils only.
Q: Why was Yr R not included?
A: The number was not straightforward. JMcC would check and advise.
There were 49 first choices for Yr R for September, many more than in previous years; they were expecting to be full, i.e. 60 pupils.
Q: LF asked what action was being taken to address behaviour issues.
A: An additional teacher had been appointed so that groups in Yr 5 and 6 could be split three ways for core subjects. Emma Red, the play therapist from Seal, was working with some children. Extra drama had been organised and was expected to help. They were also considering at behavioural maps and reviewing the behaviour policy to ensure that it was clear and focused on positives.
KB requested that the midday supervisors be consulted as part of this review.
DASHBOARD & RESULTS
Further to the Dashboard, Attachment 5, previously circulated JMcC reported the preliminary KS2 results:
JMcC explained that they had hoped that the % reaching ARE in Reading would be higher but the pass mark had risen from 21 to 26 marks and 7 pupils scored within this range. Reading scores had adversely affected the ‘Combined’ outcome.
Q: KB asked why the pass mark had increased so much.
A: The pass mark was set once all the results were known.
JMcC added that last year no pupils achieved ‘greater depth’ but this year 3 (7%) had in each of Reading, Writing and SPAG and 2 (5%) had in maths.
GC congratulated the staff on the level of achievement and the accuracy of the data; numbers were strong and moving in the right direction.
Looking at the SEF on the Dashboard GC suggested that Leadership and Management should be 2, rather than 1, as the number of governors and their involvement in 2016-17 had been less than previously. ACTION: JMcC & KC
1135 LF left the meeting and GC took the Chair
SCHOOL IMPROVEMENT PLAN
It was agreed that this would be considered at the first meeting next term.
ACTION: JMcC & KC (HE)
As noted under 4 above had completed an H&S monitoring visit and the report was to be circulated once agreed.
The paved area by the Nursery was considered to be a trip hazard. JMcC advised that a bid to replace this had been submitted to TKAT this year but had been declined. GC said that any future bid had governors’ support.
ACTION: JMcC & KC
GOVERNORS’ IMPACT (ACCOUNTABILITY) STATEMENT
Governors considered the framework drafted by GC and it was agreed to prepare a statement based upon this. ACTION: GC
POLICIES & REQUIRED DOCUMENTS
Governors noted receipt of the TKAT model Social Media policy.
TRAINING & DEVELOPMENT
For latest information refer TKAT Governors Bulletin no. 10 May 2017, circulated by e-mail 26.05.17.
DATE OF NEXT MEETING
It was agreed that the first LGC of the autumn term (annual business and T&L focus) would be on Monday 25th September 2017 at 1300.
JMcC advised that she would be working at another TKAT school next term so would be unable to attend. ACTION: HE
The meeting closed at 1150