Agenda and draft minutes

People Committee
Thursday, 16th January, 2020 7.00 pm, MOVED

Venue: Civic Offices - St Nicholas Way, Sutton, SM1 1EA. View directions

Contact: Cathy Hayward, Committee Services Officer  Tel.: 020 8770 4990, Email:  committeeservices@sutton.gov.uk

Media

Items
Note No. Item

23.

Welcome and Introductions

Minutes:

Councillor Marian James welcomed those present.

24.

Apologies for absence

Minutes:

 

Apologies for absence were received from Councillor Moira Butt with Councillor Tom Drummond attending as a substitute and from Councillor Elliott Colburn with Councillor Tim Crowley attending as substitute.

25.

Declarations of interest

Minutes:

For item 9 Andrew Theobald declared a pecuniary interest. He is Chair of the Board of Trustees of Citizens Advice Sutton and will withdraw for this item.

 

For item 6 Andrew Theobald declared a non pecuniary interest. He is a trustee of Sutton Community Transport.

 

For item 7 Councillor Tom Drummond declared a non pecuniary interest. He has a relative who uses the services of Cognus.

26.

Minutes of the previous meeting pdf icon PDF 90 KB

To approve as a correct record the minutes of the meeting held on 10 October 2019.

 

Minutes:

RESOLVED: that the minutes of the meeting held on 10 October 2019 be agreed as an accurate record.

(EDUCATION)

27.

Procurement and future delivery of Primary and Special School Catering Contract pdf icon PDF 133 KB

Children, young people and their families are at the centre of Sutton’s ambition to ensure that its residents can make informed choices about their lives, to stay active, to live well independently and to stay safe. The London Borough of Sutton, in partnership with schools from across the Borough, has a very strong track record in ensuring that Sutton’s children get the best start in life. Healthy and good quality school meals are a key aspect of this.

 

Indicative timing: 10 minutes

Minutes:

Suzanne Toomer, Commissioning Lead - Major Contracts, Shared Services and LATC Client presented the report.

 

There were no further questions.

 

Resolved: that the award of the contract for Primary and Special school catering to the successful supplier following a competitive procurement process be delegated to the Strategic Director of People Services in consultation with the Strategic Director for Resources.

 

(EDUCATION)

28.

Assisted Transport - Update pdf icon PDF 160 KB

Ambitious for Sutton sets out our vision to make Sutton a great place to live, work and raise a family. There are a range of priorities which cover keeping residents safe, healthy and resilient and investing in young people. A key part of this ambition is that children and young people in Sutton will have the right opportunities to be educated and to thrive in their local area.

 

Indicative timing: 10 minutes

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Sam Barker, Interim Assistant Director, Customers, Commissioning and Governance presented the report and reported that the lessons learned listed in appendix A are being acted on and updated.

 

Members clarified that KPIs are a part of the contract arrangements, and that as commissioners the Council would work with providers if issues arose.

 

Members asked about communications with parents, it was confirmed communication was via secure email and hard copy. Ongoing work with schools continues to ensure that parents are aware of the communication systems in place.

 

Members noted that communications with service users’ parents was a key issue.

 

The Interim Assistant Director, Customers, Commissioning and Governance explained that robust contract management arrangements were in place as part of this contract and that key performance indicators could be included in the cycle performance data reported to this committee. It was noted that data about the effectiveness of the DPS could be provided to members of the Committee and this would include information such as the numbers of providers being used and passenger transport spend. The reported transport passport scheme was noted to be in the pilot phase which remained under review.

 

The interim Assistant Director, Customers, Commissioning and Governance would provide an update members to the committee following the further roll out of the system at a later date. 

 

Resolved:

 

1 that the benefits delivered from the re-procurement of Assisted Transport be noted.

 

2. that the Assisted Transport lessons learnt review completed in early November be noted and the action plan at appendix A of the report be agreed.

(EDUCATION)

29.

Independent Expert Report pdf icon PDF 153 KB

As a borough we are Ambitious for our Children.  Working with local partners in Sutton, together we want to provide them with the best chances to achieve their best outcomes in life, whatever their starting point, and to prepare them effectively for adulthood.

 

Indicative timing: 30 minutes

 

To follow

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Sharon Scott, Independent Expert and Fiona Phelps, Assistant Director Education & SEND presented the report.

 

In discussion members noted partners were committed to making improvement.

 

The Strategic Director provided information about the networks and organisations which provide learning and information sharing to the Council in this area which enabled Cognus and the Council to learn from good practice elsewhere.

 

The Interim Assistant Director, Customers, Commissioning and Governance explained there was a robust performance management framework in place for the contract between the Council and Cognus for the services provided by Cognus for the Council, which was ongoing and would continue.

 

Members heard the rationale for recommending that option 3 of the Independent Expert’s report be progressed. The Independent Expert was clear about the importance of closer working between the Council and Cognus. The recommended option would allow more alignment between the Council’s strategic priorities and Cognus, which would enable the local authority to provide increased direction to Cognus and closer working. This option with the changes of governance would support improvement and would address the perception that Cognus had moved away from the Council’s ambitions and plans. Concerns were raised that the recommended change of arrangement to the company would alter the control the Council had over the company rather than address changes in outcomes. The costs and procedure of bringing the service back fully in house were also discussed. Members heard that option 3 would generate less disruption to the systems in place, services provided and to staff than bringing the services in house and could therefore be implemented more quickly and at lower cost.

 

Some Members suggested a lack of inclusion of consultation with partners was shown in the report. Officers clarified that the recommendation before the committee was to consider whether steps should be taken for Cognus to become wholly owned by the Council and the committee’s decision was the starting point and that the further steps required to implement the change would follow. The Independent Expert explained she had held discussions with shareholders, the Chair of the Board and other Board members. The Assistant Director Education & SEN confirmed that there had been discussions between officers and all B shareholders, plus primary and secondary head teachers and Cognus and its board. There were now new ways in which the Council, Cognus, schools and other providers were working together through the Sutton Education Partnership, and for example the High Needs Block review.

 

Sarah Wills - Legal representative- confirmed that as Cognus is a limited company, it is legally a separate entity to the Council. It was noted that at present the Council owns 75% of the shares in Cognus and the remaining 25% of shares are owned by Sutton schools and colleges as B shareholders.  It was explained that the proposal was that the B shareholders should be asked to resign their shares, so that the Council became the sole shareholder. Members considered the possibility that B shareholders would not wish to sell their shares. Officers  ...  view the full minutes text for item 29.

(EDUCATION)

30.

Pupil Place Planning Update pdf icon PDF 160 KB

Children, young people and their families are at the centre of Sutton’s ambition to ensure that its residents can make informed choices about their lives, to stay active, to live well independently and to stay safe. The London Borough of Sutton in partnership with schools from across the Borough, have a very strong track record in ensuring a sufficiency of school places in response to the changing demographics experienced in recent years.

 

Indicative timing: 10 minutes

Additional documents:

Minutes:

The Chair, Councillor Marian James provided an update on the fire of 25 December 2019 at Bandon Hill School and welcomed the ways in which staff, parents and community had been extremely supportive in the situation.

 

Kieran Holliday, Head of Pupil Based Commissioning reported that temporary classrooms were installed on 15 January 2019, and that the Local Authority (LA), the school and parents are working to repair the damaged classrooms.

 

Kieran Holliday, Head of Pupil Based Commissioning presented the report.

 

Thanks were given to the schools who have offered provision of the additional places.

 

The Head of Pupil Based Commissioning clarified the figures provided in the report and outlined the source of the funding for the £1.3m referred to in recommendation 1.2 of the report. In addition the process for the appeal of the planning application for school on the Rosehill site was also outlined.

 

Members clarified that there are options for provision for pupils who may have attended the SEN school to be provided as part of the proposed Rosehill School development.

 

Resolved:

 

1.    That the latest position on the proposed ‘Sutton Free School 1 and 2’ on the Rosehill site being managed by the Department for Education (DfE) be noted.

 

2.  That a contribution of £1.3m to support the delivery of the secondary projects listed in paragraph 5.5 of the report to ensure a sufficiency of school places in the Borough for September 2020 be approved. Final decisions on allocations to schools be delegated to the Strategic Director for Resources in liaison with the Strategic Director for People Services and the Chair of the People Committee once detailed proposals have been prepared by schools.

 

Andrew Theobald and Rev’d Kevin Lewis left the meeting at 8.15pm.

31.

Making Informed Choices Strategy pdf icon PDF 146 KB

Ambitious for Sutton sets out our vision for the borough, focusing on making Sutton a great place to live, work and raise a family. Under the theme of Making Informed Choices, there is a clear vision for individuals, families and communities to be able to access a diverse range of information, advice and guidance services to make informed choices and sustain positive changes in their lives.

 

Indicative timing: 30 minutes

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Alison Navarro, Chief Executive, Community Action Sutton provided a statement on behalf of the voluntary sector.

 

Sam Barker, Interim Assistant Director, Customers, Commissioning and Governance presented the report.

 

In discussion members clarified that some market engagement events have already taken place, and these were being used to support development of the tender specification and noted the specification would include KPIs. The resident survey and engagement with the voluntary sector has been used to support understanding views and needs of residents.

 

Members discussed the proposal and the role of the strategic partner, that included a range of services which worked together to align and create joined up working. Members discussed the requirement for a single ‘front door’ where callers to the council are able to ask questions and be signposted and that services are joined up and can be easily navigated.

 

Members expressed concerns about the process for dealing with a contract let for 5 years if concerns emerged with the services provided. The Interim Assistant Director, Customers, Commissioning and Governance outlined the procedure in place for the monitoring of contracts and explained the escalation process, a last resort of terminating a contract would remain an option.  

 

Resolved

 

1.         The procurement of a Key Strategic Partner for the delivery of the Making Informed Choices Approach as set out in Appendix A of the report be approved and authority be delegated to the Strategic Director of People Services in consultation with the Chair of the People Committee to award a contract (for a period of five years, with the option to extend for a further 2 years (in two twelve monthly instalments), with an approximate annual contract value of £1-2 million.

32.

Sutton LSCP Annual Report 2018-19 pdf icon PDF 147 KB

The Local Safeguarding Children Partnership (LSCP) is a strategic partnership set out in primary legislation (Children and Social Work Act 2017), regulations and Working Together to Safeguard Children 2018 and Keeping Children Safe in Education 2018.  The LSCP Annual Report 2018-19 is an appraisal of the strategic partnership function, embedded within our local safeguarding arrangements.

 

Indicative timing: 15 minutes

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Jonathan Williams, Assistant Director, Children's Social Care and Safeguarding presented the report.

 

The Assistant Director, Children's Social Care and Safeguarding provided further detail about the financial contribution of partners. Assistant Director, Children's Social Care and Safeguarding acknowledged pressures for partners in attending conferences, and highlighted attendance of partners (noting GPs) had improved. 

 

Resolved:

 

1.      The contents of the 2018-19 Local Safeguarding Children Partnership Annual Report be endorsed.

33.

Local Account 2018/19 pdf icon PDF 89 KB

Sutton is ambitious: it wants all of its residents and visitors to make informed choices about their lives, to stay active, to live well independently and to stay safe. As part of this ambition, Adult Social Services provides support to vulnerable people to promote their wellbeing, stay safe and support their independence. This report presents the Local Account for 2018/19, as Appendix A, which outlines Adult Social Services key achievements and a summary of services delivered. It explains how adult social services has used its resources to support vulnerable people in the borough and has addressed key priorities.

 

Indicative timing: 10 minutes

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Luke Addams, Assistant Director, Adult Social Care presented the report.

 

Members welcomed the new format of the report as it improved on the previous format.

 

The Assistant Director, Adult Social Care clarified the carer satisfaction figures in the report.

 

It was explained there has been work to raise awareness of safeguarding ‘is everyone's business’ and communications work focusing on prevention was underway.

 

Resolved

 

1.           That the 2018/19 Local Account, subject to amendments from discussion be approved.

 

2.           That the continued use of the new format of the Draft London Borough of Sutton Adult Social Services Local Account for 2018/19 - How We Served You, for future Local Accounts (as in appendix A of the report) be approved.

34.

Corporate Parenting Strategy and Children in Care Sufficiency Strategy pdf icon PDF 144 KB

In Sutton we have high ambition and aspiration for our children and young people, with an agreed vision that; ‘Children and Young People in Sutton live with resilient families, are happy, safe and healthy and grow up with the skills, knowledge and attributes to be confident and independent; ready for adult life’.

 

Indicative timing: 25 minutes

 

Additional documents:

Minutes:

Michael Taylor, Head of Service Corporate Parenting, and Jonathan Williams, Assistant Director, Children's Social Care and Safeguarding presented the report.

 

Members welcomed the Corporate Parenting strategy and the Children in Care Sufficiency strategy.

 

Members acknowledged amendment to council tax payment arrangements for care leavers was complex and included issues such as care leavers living outside of the Sutton Borough. It is planned that a report will be presented to the Housing Economy and Business Committee in March or July 2020.

 

Resolved:

 

1.         That the Corporate Parenting strategy be approved.

 

2.         That the Children in Care Sufficiency strategy be approved.

 

3.         That an analysis of costings of a change in council tax for care leavers aged 18-24 to determine the extent of any cost to the council and inform how that might be funded be approved.

35.

Any urgent business

To consider any items which, in the view of the Chair, should be dealt with as a matter of urgency because of special circumstances (in accordance with S100B(4) of the Local Government Act 1972).

Minutes:

There was no urgent business.