Agenda and draft minutes

Agenda and draft minutes

Overview and Scrutiny Ofsted Subgroup - Wednesday, 28th February, 2024 10.00 am

Venue: Council Antechamber, Level 2, Town Hall Extension. View directions

Contact: Rachel McKeon 

Items
No. Item

35.

Minutes pdf icon PDF 74 KB

To approve as a correct record the minutes of the meeting held on 22 November 2023.

Minutes:

The Chair provided an update on the visits that Subgroup Members had recently undertaken to Rodney House School, Prospect House Specialist Support Primary School and Manchester Montessori House, which were all judged to be outstanding.  She advised that they all had fantastic strengths and welcomed that, as a new-build special school, Prospect House’s building had been designed to meet the needs of their pupils.  She reported that she had attended the Childminders’ Forum, advising that it had been very well-attended and that the childminders were very engaged and appreciative of the training and support they received.

 

Decision

 

To approve as a correct record the minutes of the meeting held on 22 November 2023.

36.

Ofsted Inspections of Manchester Schools pdf icon PDF 97 KB

To receive a list of all Manchester schools which have been inspected since the last meeting and the judgements awarded and to consider the main themes arising from the inspections.

Minutes:

The Subgroup received a list of all Manchester schools which had been inspected since the last meeting and the judgements awarded. 

 

The Senior School Quality Assurance Officer provided Members with an overview of the inspections which had taken place since the last meeting.  She highlighted that Grange School had been judged to be inadequate a few years ago but was now judged to be outstanding.  She reported that, overall, 87.8% of Manchester schools were judged to be good or outstanding and that this applied to 88.9% of primary schools and 82.8% of secondary schools.  She informed Members that a mix of different areas for improvement had been identified in the reports published and outlined some of the recurring themes, which included attendance, particularly reducing persistent absenteeism, reading for older pupils, the implementation of the curriculum and assessments to identify and then address precise gaps in knowledge.  She reported that these themes had been shared with Headteachers, who had been signposted to resources and training.  She advised Members that Headteachers had also been informed about changes to Ofsted, such as the mandatory mental health training for inspectors, the policy on pausing an inspection and how to request a deferral, and the support which was available from the Council during an inspection.  She stated that her team had reassured Headteachers that there was a wealth of support available to them during an inspection and that the vast majority of inspections were carried out fairly and were not like the worst-case scenarios shared on social media.

 

The Senior School Quality Assurance Officer reported that a webinar on adaptive teaching had taken place in January, that it had been very well-attended and had received positive feedback and that follow-up sessions were being planned to showcase good practice.  She informed Members that the rate of Ofsted inspections had slowed down considerably this school year, compared to last year, but that there had been an increase in inspections of schools which had previously been judged to be outstanding and had been exempt from inspection for a number of years.  She reported that the series of webinars on the curriculum had now concluded, that these had been well-received by school leaders and that her team was evaluating the success of these webinars and looking at what further training and support should be provided, noting that this might involve a focus on the implementation of the curriculum, given that this had been a theme in recent Ofsted reports.

 

In response to a Member’s question about sharing good practice on attendance, the Senior School Quality Assurance Officer reported that one of her colleagues, who led on attendance for the Council, sat on boards at both a regional and national level which explored and shared good practice on attendance.  She informed Members about targeted support provided to schools, which took a whole school approach to attendance and provided advice on individual cases, and about a pilot project to address attendance issues in Wythenshawe, noting that school attendance in the city  ...  view the full minutes text for item 36.

37.

Ofsted Inspections of Daycare Providers pdf icon PDF 80 KB

To receive a list of daycare providers which have been inspected since the last meeting and the judgements awarded and to consider the main themes arising from the inspections.

Minutes:

The Subgroup received a list of all Manchester daycare providers which had been inspected since the last meeting and the judgements awarded.

 

The Early Years Quality Assurance Lead provided Members with an overview of the inspections which had taken place since the last meeting.  She informed the Subgroup that 95.5% of settings in Manchester were judged to be good or outstanding.  In response to a Member’s question about Kids Allowed MFT, she reported that this setting had previously been judged to be outstanding but had been judged to be requires improvement at its most recent inspection.  She reported that there had been a number of changes in managers at the setting and that consistency of staffing was an issue, informing Members that recruitment and retention of staff was particularly challenging in Wythenshawe.  She informed Members that, once the Quality Assurance team had been made aware of the judgement, the setting had been put on their requires improvement pathway and they were working with and providing support to the setting to address the areas of concern highlighted in the report.  In response to a Member’s question, she highlighted how Dingley’s Promise training supported staff to work with children with SEND, advising that her team was sharing some elements of the training through their forums and encouraging managers in Early Years settings to break it down into smaller segments to share through their team meetings, if staff did not have time to complete the training course.

 

The Subgroup discussed the reasons for recruitment and retention issues, in Wythenshawe specifically and in the Early Years sector more broadly, and how to address these.  A Member expressed concern about the sector being able to cope with the increased demand due to the expansion of the free childcare entitlement, advising that pay in the sector needed to be reviewed.  The Early Years Quality Assurance Lead informed Members about new government initiatives to recruit to the sector.  She reported that the level of pay was a key issue, as people were able to earn more working in a coffee shop, as well as the working hours and a preference for jobs where it was possible to work from home.  She informed Members about a recruitment event at The Manchester College to attract more people into the sector and about a low-cost recruitment agency which had been set up funded through the Greater Manchester Innovation Fund.  A Member commented that childcare workers would also be eligible for the free childcare entitlement which would make working in the sector more financially viable and that this could be promoted to them. 

 

The Early Years Quality Assurance Lead reported that changes to Ofsted inspections also affected the Early Years sector and that childminders and settings were being encouraged to identify to someone to support them during their inspection.  She informed Members about positive feedback from settings which had been inspected recently, including that the process was more transparent.  In response to a Member’s question, she reported that new settings  ...  view the full minutes text for item 37.

38.

Terms of Reference and Work Programme pdf icon PDF 62 KB

Report of the Governance and Scrutiny Support Unit

 

To review the Terms of Reference and Work Programme of the Subgroup.

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Decisions

 

1.             To note the Terms of Reference and Work Programme.

 

2.             To arrange visits to Grange School, Winstanley Day Nursery and Early Explorers (Ardwick).