Agenda and draft minutes

EXTRAORDINARY MEETING, Children, Families, Lifelong Learning & Culture Select Committee - Wednesday, 1 June 2022 10.00 am

Venue: Woodhatch Place, 11 Cockshot Hill, Reigate, RH2 8EF

Contact: Ross Pike, Scrutiny Business Officer 

Media

Items
No. Item

17/22

APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE AND SUBSTITUTIONS

    To report any absences and substitutions.

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    Apologies received from Lesley Steeds, Liz Bowes, Rebecca Jenning-Evans and Tanya Quddus. Riasat Khan substituted for Lesley Steeds.

    Rachael Lake attended remotely. Chris Townsend chaired the meeting.

    .

     

18/22

MINUTES OF THE PREVIOUS MEETINGS: 7 APRIL 2022 pdf icon PDF 358 KB

    To agree the minutes of the previous meeting of the Children, Families, Lifelong Learning and Culture as a true and accurate record of proceedings.

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    The minutes were agreed.

19/22

DECLARATIONS OF INTEREST

    All Members present are required to declare, at this point in the meeting or as soon as possible thereafter:

          I.        Any disclosable pecuniary interests and / or

        II.        Other interests arising under the Code of Conduct in respect of any item(s) of business being considered at this meeting

     

    NOTES:

    ·         Members are reminded that they must not participate in any item where they have a disclosable pecuniary interest

    ·         As well as an interest of the Member, this includes any interest, of which the Member is aware, that relates to the Member’s spouse or civil partner (or any person with whom the Member is living as a spouse or civil partner)

    ·         Members with a significant personal interest may participate in the discussion and vote on that matter unless that interest could be reasonably regarded as prejudicial.

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    None received.

20/22

QUESTIONS AND PETITIONS pdf icon PDF 190 KB

    To receive any questions or petitions.

    Notes:

    1.    The deadline for Member’s questions is 12.00pm four working days before the meeting (19 June 2020).

     

    2.    The deadline for public questions is seven days before the meeting(18 June 2020)

     

    3.    The deadline for petitions was 14 days before the meeting, and no petitions have been received.

     

     

    The public retain their right to submit questions for written response, with such answers recorded in the minutes of the meeting; questioners may participate in meetings to ask a supplementary question. Petitioners may address the Committee on their petition for up to three minutes Guidance will be made available to any member of the public wishing to speak at a meeting.

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    Supplementary questions were asked as part of item 5.

21/22

OFSTED REPORT INTO SURREY COUNTY COUNCIL RUN CHILDREN'S HOME: SC040628 pdf icon PDF 353 KB

    Purpose of the report:

     

    To respond to concerns raised by Select Committee Members that a Surrey County Council run children’s home (SC040628), previously judged to be ‘good’ at its last full inspection in May 2021, had been judged to have ‘declined in effectiveness’ at an interim inspection conducted in February 2022 and that Members were not notified of this inspection outcome prior to the published report being covered in the local news media.

     

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    Witnesses:

    Clare Curran, Cabinet Member for Children and Families

    Rachael Wardell, Executive Director – Children, Families and Learning

    Tina Benjamin, Director – Corporate Parenting

    Jo Rabbite, Assistant Director – Children’s Resources

    Mike Stringer, Head of External Communications

     

    Key points raised in the discussion:

    1. The Chairman sought clarification regarding the number of Surrey County Council (SCC) run children’s homes which had been closed. The Executive Director explained that SCC used to run ten children’s homes but following the recent closure of a home in February 2022, they now run nine. There had been one closure of a Surrey County Council run home. There had also been a closure of another children’s home in Surrey which was privately run.

     

    1. The Executive Director introduced the report, explaining that internal communication procedures had already been amended following the situation. It had been agreed that any newly published reports for Council-run children’s homes would be brought to the meetings of the Corporate Parenting Board (CPB) and the Children, Families, Lifelong Learning and Culture Select Committee (CFLLC Select Committee). However, due to the infrequent meeting cycles it was subsequently decided that this approach was insufficient, and Members would now be updated through the Members’ portal. The Executive Director clarified that the report to the Select Committee had been commissioned to cover one Council run children’s home. Since the production of this report, a report on another Council run children’s home had been published and it was posted on the Members’ portal. The previous inspection outcome of that home was outstanding, and it was now rated as good.

     

    1. A Member sought clarification regarding the closure of three privately-run children’s homes outside of Surrey, which housed looked after children from Surrey and had recently closed. The Executive Director confirmed that this was the case.

     

    1. The Cabinet Member apologised to the Members about the lack of communication regarding the closure of the children’s home. The Cabinet Member explained that Children’s Services acted in the best interest of the young people living there at the time and action had since been taken to prevent future inadequate communication happening again.

     

    1. The Chairman took the Member questions submitted at item 4 as part of the main item. As a supplementary question to question one of item 4, a Member asked which Council officer read and assessed the Regulation 44 reports for non-Council run children’s homes. The Director explained that the Gateway to Resources team, which was part of the wider Commissioning team, completed this as part of their quality assurance work. The Member queried whether they were read on a monthly basis. The Director clarified that they were not read monthly by the Gateway team, but they were read regularly by the social work teams.

     

    1. The Member asked, as a supplementary to question two, about the action taken and by whom if there was a concerning Regulation 44 (Independent Monitoring Visit) report. The Director explained that it was dependent on the nature of the concern. It was likely to be the  ...  view the full minutes text for item 21/22

22/22

FORWARD WORK PROGRAMME pdf icon PDF 514 KB

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    For the Select Committee to review the attached forward work programme, making suggestions or amendments as appropriate.

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    Key points raised in the discussion:

    1. A Member requested that the item on the SEND Transformation Programme include information on 18- to 25-year-olds as well.

     

23/22

DATE OF THE NEXT MEETING

    The next public meeting of the Select Committee will be held on Wednesday, 6 July 2022.

    Additional documents:

    Minutes:

    The Select Committee noted that its next meeting would be held on Wednesday, 6 July 2022.