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Blossomfield

Infant and Nursery School

'Blossom at Blossomfield'

Minutes of FGB Meeting - 21 November 2018 FINAL

 

Page 1 of 11 Chair’s Initials _____________

Minutes of the Statutory Meeting of The Board Of Governors at Blossomfield Infant & Nursery School on Wednesday 21 November 2018

Present: Mrs L Bosley (Chair of Governing Body) (LB), Mrs B Farkas (Headteacher) (BF), Mrs S Church (SC), Mrs D Rothwell (DR), Mr J Shaw (JS), Mrs Michelle Wilson (MW), Mrs Olivia Chapman (OC), Ms Sophie Garraty (SG), Councillor Annette Mackenzie (AM), Mr Stuart Hughes (SH) – note that staff and governors who were staff left prior to item 14

Apologies:

Absent without

Apologies:

In Attendance: Mrs P Atkinson (Business Manager) (PA), Mrs K Morrison (KM) (Deputy Headteacher), Ms Deborah Yardley (Clerk to The Governing Body) (DY)

The meeting opened at 6pm and was quorate throughout (10 governors reducing to 7 for item 14) Agenda Item

Supporting Documents

2

 Terms of Reference for Resources & Teaching & Learning Committees

3

 Minutes from the previous meeting – 17 July 2018

5

 Draft Minutes of Resources Committee Meeting 7 November 2018

 End of Year Out-turn Statement - School

 End of Year Out-turn Statement – Childcare

 Forward Forecaster

6

 Training records

 SMBC Governor Training programme details

 NGA Questionnaire

7

 Pay & Conditions Policy & Guidance Notes

 Sickness Absence Management Policy & Guidance Notes

 Behaviour & Anti-bullying Policy

 Child Protection Policy

 Looked After Children Policy

 Safeguarding Policy

 SMBC Attendance Policy

 EASEE Policy

8

 Report of the Head Teacher

 Blossomfield Childcare Report

 Child Protection / SEN report

 CPD – Training Record

 Curriculum Reports Autumn 2018

 School Development Plan

 SEF October 2018

 Parent Questionnaires Summary

 SEN report

9

 Minutes of Teaching and Learning Committee Meeting of 26 September 2018

10

 Chair’s Actions

Minute Item

Outcomes

4.1.1

SG and SH to send their completed PI forms to the Clerk so the Clerk could complete the annual PI register to be uploaded to the school website.

Minute ref: BFGB211118.1

4.1.2

The Governor Code of Conduct was accepted. SG and SH would send their completed forms to the Clerk.

Minute ref: BFGBM211118.2

4.2.1

The Clerk would add the election of Vice Chair to the agenda for the Spring Term meeting.

Minute ref: BFGBM211118.3

4.2.2

Governors approved the re-election of Debbie Rothwell as co-opted governor appointed for a 4 year term with effect from 1 December 2018. The Clerk would update GovernorHub.

Minute ref: BFGBM211118.4

4.2.5

Governors approved the Resources Committee and Teaching & Learning Committee Terms of Reference.

Minute ref: BFGBM211118.5

4.3

The minutes of the meeting held on 17 July 2018 were approved and signed by the Chair as a true and accurate record of the meeting.

Minute ref: BFGBM211118.6

4.5

Governors accepted the school fund accounts.

Minute ref: BFGBM211118.7

4.6

The following governor training was agreed for the Spring :-

7 March 2019 Chair’s Briefing Session – LB

7 February - Child Sexual Exploitation – SG and AM

26 February - Clerks Briefing – DY

24 January - Data Protection & FOI – OC, SG, SH, MW

5 March - H&S in schools– SH, AM

Jan 2019 – New Governor Training – OC, SG and MW

Governors to book themselves on the above courses via Governor Hub.

Minute ref: BFGBM211118.8

All governors were requested to complete the NGA skills audit and return to the Chair by 30 January 2019. The Chair would collate and identify gaps. Agenda

item for Spring Full Board Meeting.

Minute ref: BFGBM211118.9

4.7

The following policies were all adopted by governors.

Sickness Absence Management Policy & Guidance Notes

Pay Policy & Guidance Notes

Behaviour & Anti-Bullying Policy – school policy

Child Protection Policy

Looked After Children Policy – school policy

Safeguarding Policy

SMBC Attendance Policy

EASEE Policy (Emergency Planning Document)

Purchasing Policy

Minute ref: BFGBM211118.10

4.8

All governors must read Part 1 of Keeping Children Safe in Education September 2018.

All governors must complete the online Prevent training.

Minute ref: BFGBM211118.11

Governors accepted the SDP.

Minute ref: BFGBM211118.12

The Clerk was asked to add the allocation of linked governors to the agenda for Spring Term.

Minute ref: BFGBM211118.13

4.1

Welcome and Apologies for Absence

The Chair welcomed everyone to the meeting. JS had advised that he would be late arriving.

The Chair gave a particular welcome to the new parent governors who introduced themselves. All governors introduced themselves to OC, SG and MW.

4.1.1

Declaration of Pecuniary Interests

There were no changes to any declared interests or new declared interests. The forms for SH and SG were outstanding.

4.1.2

Governor Code of Conduct

Forms for all governors were received with the exception of SH and SG which were outstanding.

4.2

Governing Body Structure 2018/19

4.2.1 Election of Vice Chair of Governing Body

The Chair suggested that given there were a number of relatively new governors on the board the election of Vice Chair be held over to the Spring Term and governors agreed. The Clerk was asked to add election of Vice Chair to the agenda for the Spring Term meeting.

Prior to item 4.22 DR left the room.

4.22 Re-election of Debbie Rothwell as co-opted governor

The Chair provided some background to DR as co-opted governor. DR’s current term of office ends on 30 November 2018. Governors unanimously re-elected DR as a co-opted governor with effect from 1 December 2018 for a 4 year term. The Clerk would update GovernorHub.

4.2.3 Welcome to new Parent governors

The Chair reiterated to all governors the importance of confidentiality. If any governor had any concerns then they should speak to the Chair or Headteacher.

4.2.4 Co-opted governor vacancies

There were currently 2 co-opted vacancies. The Chair asked all governors to think of anyone they knew who was not involved in school who might wish to become a valuable member of the board. A governor asked whether there was any particular skill set which was missing. The Headteacher advised that governors had been asked to complete the NGA skills audit to see identify any skill gaps and this would be discussed later on the agenda.

4.2.5 Approval of Resources & Teaching & Learning Committees Terms of Reference

The minor changes were outlined to governors.

Governors approved the Resources and Teaching & Learning Committees Terms of Reference.

4.3

Minutes of Meeting held on 17 July 2018

The minutes of the meeting held on 17 July 2018 were approved by governors as a true and accurate record of the meeting and were signed by the Chair.

4.4

Matters Arising from the Minutes

There were no matters arising.

4.5

Resources Committee Report

The draft minutes of the Resources Committee held 7 November 2018 on had been circulated to governors and were duly noted.

The Business Manager updated that the Resources Committee had been advised that the school had overspent on teachers’ pay due to the larger than budgeted increase from September. The Business Manager advised governors that the school had now been informed that the DfE grant of £6003 would be paid shortly.

Governors were advised that there were two building asset surveys ongoing. An asset report was being prepared for SMBC by Property Services. A DfE survey would also happen although the date was as unknown.

There had been a slight overspend on buildings as the Pod 1 and 2 toilets had been upgraded during the summer. The school had had to use the revenue budget as they were unable to access the devolved capital budget.

Long term sickness staff had also been a challenge and therefore the school had overspent on the supply budget and use of agency staff. The Business Manager advised that the absence insurance had paid £9k but this did not cover the whole amount and the school needed to wait 10 days before they could make an insurance claim.

There had been 51 children in Nursery on census day with a mixture of full and part time children attending (the budget was 60). The Headteacher confirmed that Blossomfield Nursery numbers were much healthier than other schools. The school had capacity for 80 part time places.

The Business Manager confirmed it was possible that at the end of the financial year the school would be £6k overspent compared to budget. However the Childcare Unit would have a larger surplus than expected so overall the school would be within budget.

The Business Manager circulated a copy of the school fund accounts and explained how the audit had been completed. The wildlife bequest was noted. The Chair explained that whilst her husband had audited the school fund, she had no dealings and no responsibility for the school fund. Governors accepted the school fund accounts.

The forward forecaster had been added to GovernorHub. This report was prepared by the School Finance Officer and predicted expenditure 5 years ahead. Governors would review the new Forward Forecaster in the summer term.

4.6

Governance

The following governor training was agreed for the Spring Term:-

7 March 2019 Chair’s Briefing Session – LB

7 February - Child Sexual Exploitation – SG and AM

26 February - Clerks Briefing – DY

24 January - Data Protection & FOI – OC, SG, SH, MW

5 March - H&S in schools– SH, AM

Jan 2019 – New Governor Training – OC, SG and MW

Governors to book themselves on the above courses via Governor Hub.

Governors were reminded that they should send apologies if they were unable to attend.

The Business Manager advised that Linda Sheridan would be running a Finance course for governors but in the meantime had offered to come into school to provide training.

The Chair advised new governors that all Blossomfield governors were members of the NGA and Solihull Governors Association. These would be useful events if governors were able to attend.

All governors were requested to complete the NGA skills audit and return to the Chair by 30 January 2019. The Chair would then collate and identify gaps.

Governors then discussed Governor Hub. A governor advised that he had been impressed with the notifications received and overall it appeared a sensible document retention system. The Headteacher confirmed that GovernorHub had made it much easier to upload documents and was a much smarter way of working. Another governor confirmed that it was very intuitive to use.

4.7

Adoption of Policies

The following policies were adopted by governors:-

Sickness Absence Management Policy & Guidance Notes

Pay Policy & Guidance Notes

Behaviour & Anti-Bullying Policy – school policy

Child Protection Policy

Looked After Children Policy – school policy

Safeguarding Policy

SMBC Attendance Policy

EASEE Policy (Emergency Planning Document) – once approved a copy would be available to all governors on GovernorHub and a hardcopy would be supplied to the Chair of Governors.

Purchasing Policy

4.8

Headteacher’s Report

The comprehensive report had been circulated with the agenda. Governors were warmly welcomed to attend the Christmas performances and should advise the office if they required a ticket. Parents would be asked to book seats on line. The Headteacher thanked all stakeholders in the school particularly the teachers. The LA had now confirmed that the school had been rated as a Band A school.

All the staff in school had contributed to the SDP. The LA had confirmed that the evaluative work involved was extensive.

4.8.1 School Organisation

Governors noted the following points:-

The numbers of children on roll continued to change. The September census was used to calculate school funding. Children who joined the school after the census

did not attract additional funding. The school was virtually full albeit with a couple of spaces in Reception.

The Headteacher explained the reasons for the different numbers of children in the year 1 classes where there were two classes of 31 children and 1 class of 27 children. The Headteacher confirmed the decisions on the numbers of children related to the capacity and experience of the teacher and ensuring that children with high needs were accommodated in the best possible way.

The Headteacher advised that 1 child had been excluded for 3.5 days. This was the first child excluded in 7 years and there were compelling reasons for the decision. The Headteacher outlined the process which took place and how the child would be reintegrated into school. Governors noted the challenges that some children had and how behaviour problems were more difficult to deal with than learning difficulties. There were some challenging children in school. KM advised that the school would liaise with experts from the local authority to buy in services for children and their families. KM outlined how budgetary constraints were impacting on the LA who appeared to be stepping away from providing services.

Governors reviewed the absence details. Statutory attendance currently stood at almost 97% and the aspirational target was 98%.

The report noted the amount of unauthorised absence and the reasons for absence and also included the number of families to which it related.

The report also noted staff absence split between teaching staff, TAs and Childcare staff. One member of staff had had major surgery with subsequent serious complications necessitating a significant period of absence.

Sites & Buildings – the Site Manager met with the Business Manager once a week. The Headteacher outlined how the Site Manager jobs were prioritised. Maintenance of sites and buildings was important.

4.8.3 Personnel and Staff Development

Changes to staffing were noted. Sally Shepherd had left and was now available for casual work when required.

The CPD training record was noted. A governor commented that there had been a huge amount of training. The Headteacher confirmed that training took on a variety of guises and sometimes involved cascading expertise to less experienced members of staff. The school also worked collaboratively with 15 other schools and reciprocal relationships were important. KM advised that lunchtime supervisors now had a school email address which had reinforced their sense of belonging to Blossomfield. School emails would be used to cascade information. The school had procured a package via Collaborative for safeguarding.

The report from Blossomfield Childcare was noted.

4.8.4 Safeguarding

Governors received an update on safeguarding. The Headteacher confirmed that KM was now DSL and the Headteacher was now Deputy DSL. The Chair was the Governor Safeguarding Lead. There were also two Deputy DSLs in Childcare.

The Headteacher advised that the LA were looking at how they could provide safeguarding training to meet the demand from schools as SC had not been able to renew her DSL training. It was confirmed that the school staffing requirement was covered.

KM advised that the school had purchased the My Concern software which was an online system for recording any child protection concerns. One benefit was that information and records were received electronically for children who joined the school. KM confirmed that staff used it on a daily basis to upload information.

A governor asked if there was any way to recognise children who were carers. KM confirmed that following a discussion with parents, the school could recognise that pupils had a caring responsibility at home.

It was confirmed that the SCR was checked by the Headteacher and Chair every term. The critical incidents and bullying log was also checked by the Chair every term. A governor asked whether there was an overlap between this and My Concern. The Headteacher explained the differences in how both were used.

Keeping Children Safe in Education September 2018 – all governors must read Part 1 which summarised the most important points.

The Headteacher outlined that governors must complete the online Prevent training and there was a link in the Headteacher report. The training was 45 minutes long. All staff had renewed their Prevent training yesterday.

The Headteacher updated governors on Operational Encompass an initiative which would ensure that the police would communicate directly with schools where they had attended a domestic incidence.

A fire safety drill was carried out every term. This term the drill had taken place on 12 November when the school had been evacuated in 2 minutes 58 seconds.

Blossomfield Childcare continued to thrive. The integration of the children attending for 30 hours was going well with benefits for children and staff and made it a richer and seamless experience. A parent governor validated the benefits of the integration. The Headteacher confirmed that the school was looking to further improve the provision within the SDP.

Curriculum reports from staff had been included in the Headteacher’s report. The Chair explained that the curriculum report was a basis for asking questions and it was important that governors knew what was going on in school.

Given the new governors who had joined the board there was a need to review linked governors and the Clerk was asked to add this to the agenda for Spring Term. OC expressed a particular interest in becoming the link governor for EAL.

4.8.6 School Development Plan

The Headteacher advised governors that the SDP was the school plan for the rest of the academic year. It was available on Governor Hub. The report identified areas of improvement to move the school forward. The Headteacher briefed governors on the areas of focus for the current school year.

Data at the end of 2017/18 had identified that boys’ writing was an issue; this was a

nationwide challenge. Initiatives to help boys want to write were underway. Governors were briefed that last week the fire engine had visited and boys had seen the fire fighters writing and acting as role models.

Helping more girls reach greater depth in maths was also a key objective for the year. This had been successful last year and was linked to increased confidence. Therefore the school would continue with initiatives.

Vulnerable pupils were always a key priority on the SDP and the focus was on helping them to be junior ready. For some this would be a challenge and they would be kept under scrutiny.

Growing Blossomfield Childcare and the integration of wraparound with nursery was also an objective. Funds from Blossomfield Childcare would be reinvested in the school and the focus was on making it the best it could be.

Governors were part of the leadership and management team. It was important to ensure that governors attended courses, completed safeguarding training, focused on the strategic development of school and had the skill sets to support the school to move forward.

The SDP for 2019/20 would be based on the new Ofsted framework and the Headteacher advised governors that discussions were already underway.

A governor asked how vulnerable pupils were defined. KM advised that they were any child with additional needs or PP children. KM confirmed that it related to looked after and post looked after children, children who received free school meals and had done at any point in the last 6 years and service children.

The Headteacher advised governors that the school relied on parents to inform the school of any changes in circumstances.

Governors accepted the SDP.

The 2017/18 data was reviewed. Governors were advised that the target of 85% of children to meet or exceed the standard was aspirational.

The current Year 2 data had been reviewed with the School Improvement Adviser and the school had set a target of 75% for this cohort.

KM advised that Language Link had been used for this cohort in Reception. 28 children had been identified in Reception as needing intervention. This was an indicator of the levels of communication children had. By comparison, in the current Reception year the screening tool had identified only around 4 children as needing intervention. Governors questioned whether this meant the current Year 2 cohort was an anomaly. The Headteacher confirmed that this cohort was unusual and hence the reason for the adjustment in the target. A governor asked whether there were many children who had EAL.

The Headteacher advised that the school had an EAL lead. The numbers of children with EAL had increased from 11% to 26% currently. This was not necessarily because there had been an increase but the definition had changed to include children who had any exposure to another language. Children may be brought up bilingually. It was confirmed that the Language Link screening tool was based on English only. There were 37 languages used in school.

The Headteacher reported that the PTA was currently struggling for volunteers to attend meetings and organise events.

Family workshops had proven very popular and parents were very appreciative. There had been a number of trips and visits to support the curriculum and inspire the children.

Parent Partnership continued to operate and minutes of meetings were available on the school website. Parent governors were advised that they could not be members of parent partnership as well as governors.

After school clubs were very popular. There had been good attendance at the open morning. There would be a further open morning in the summer term. The autumn term welcome meetings had been less well attended and governors discussed why this might have been the case. The Headteacher advised that the school would re-assess and ask parents how they would prefer to receive this information. The Headteacher noted that these meetings were not part of teachers’ contracts.

Parents’ evenings had been well attended using the online appointment system.

Governors noted the SEF which was the school evaluation which would be reviewed by Ofsted prior to any visit. It was a brief but comprehensive document.

4.8.9 Parent Questionnaires

This was an annual process and governors were pleased to see the positive feedback which had been received. KM provided governors with an update.

In previous years Year 2 parents had a different questionnaire. This year all parents had received the same questionnaire.

Information would be uploaded to the school website so parents can see the feedback.

Governors discussed the composition of the Teaching & Learning and Resources Committees and the following was agreed:-

OC – T&L

SG – Resources

SH – T&L (would not be attending Resources)

MW - Resources

The Clerk would update Governor Hub (done).

4.8.10 Child Protection / SEN

KM provided governors with an update. The report had been provided to governors ahead of the meeting.

The SEN register was a live document. One child was awaiting the final form of an EHCP and recruitment of a staff member to support the pupil was underway.

Yvonne Cooper had taken on the role of ASD Lead. Governors were advised that there were at least 10 children awaiting specialist attention and the waiting list was

over a year which was challenging for parents. The Lead from SMBC would attend school next week to speak to those parents whose children are awaiting a diagnosis.

KM advised governors that the school would look at the progress of SEN children as many of them would not be able to attain age related expectations. A governor asked whether the school would receive funding for those children awaiting a diagnosis. It was confirmed that school funding would only be received upon a diagnosis and was not awarded retrospectively.

4.9

Teaching & Learning Committee

The minutes of the meeting held on 26 September 2018 had been sent to governors with the agenda. Governors had no comments on the minutes of the meeting. The Chair thanked AM for taking on the role of Committee Chair for this academic year.

4.10

Chair’s Action

The report had been circulated to governors with the agenda and was duly noted.

4.11

Website

The new website was much more professional and the SLT would look to refine it over this year.

The key improvement was that the school could update the website. The Clerk would arrange for the new PI register to be added to the website once the outstanding forms had been received. The Clerk would also add an updated list of governors to the website.

4.12

Publication of Minutes and Papers

It was agreed that were no confidential items.

4.13

Date of Spring Statutory Meeting

Wednesday 13 March 2019 at 6pm.

Prior to item 14.14, members of staff withdrew from the meeting for the discussion to take place regarding the Performance Management Outcomes for all Teaching Staff and Senior Managers.

4.14

Recommendations for SLMT & Teachers Pay

This item has been recorded as a Confidential Minute.

4.15

Termination of Meeting

The meeting closed at 9.10pm.

School Values

Below are our core values.

Happiness

Respect

Caring

Responsibility

Perseverance

Independence

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