Agenda and minutes

Gateshead Schools Forum - Thursday, 6th February, 2020 2.00 pm

Venue: Dryden Centre

Contact: Rosalyn Patterson - email: 

No. Item




Apologies for absence were received from Sarah Diggle, Chris Toon, Julie Goodfellow, Matt Waterfield and Martin Flowers.



Minutes pdf icon PDF 217 KB

The Forum is asked to approve as a correct record the minutes of the last meeting held on 9 January 2020


The minutes of the meeting held on 9 January 2020 were agreed as a correct record.


Matters Arising

Following the last meeting the Emotionally Based School Avoidance service is undergoing the recruitment process for the learning mentor, all schools in Gateshead had agreed to buy back the service and the Forum was thanked for its contribution.



Early Years Funding pdf icon PDF 178 KB

Carole Smith, Resources and Digital


Forum received a report outlining the Early Years Funding modelling for 2020/21.


The proposed top slice for the early years block is 4.5%, £519,028. It was noted that if there is any underspend it would be added to the Inclusion Fund for early years children with special educational needs.


There has been an increase in funding to the LA of £0.08 per hour or 2 year old and 3 and 4 year old funding.  This rate has been fully passported to providers for 2 year olds. In terms of 3 and 4 year old funding the base rate has increased by £0.09 per hour and the deprivation supplement  will be amended to take account of the January 2020 census, when  the Acorn data is refreshed.


RESOLVED    -           That the Schools Forum noted the updated EYSFF factor

values and noted the two-year-old funding rate.



Special Schools Formula pdf icon PDF 186 KB

Carole Smith, Resources and Digital


A report was presented on the work of the Special Schools Funding Review group. The review of the fixed cost element  has been undertaken over the past two years as the previous formula was based on 2012/13 data and was therefore out of date. 


Following conversations with Special School Headteachers a number of factors were chosen that will not vary massively year on year.


The point was made that further information giving more of a breakdown would have been helpful in order for the Forum to fully scrutinise.  It was noted that this relates only to the fixed costs which is a small element of the funding block. The group looked at what is bespoke to Special Schools and it was also agreed that by having a fixed cost element this protects LA funding.


It was confirmed that it has been impossible to benchmark the formula as this differs between authorities. The pupil top up funding  formula is pupil need driven whereas other areas pay per number of pupils.


RESOLVED    -           That the Forum approves the new formula factors for use in

calculating 2020/21 special school budgets.



Schools Forum Constitution pdf icon PDF 176 KB

Carole Smith, Resources and Digital


A report was presented which proposed to increase membership of the Forum by one to allow for maintained secondary school representation.  It was noted that this will ensure representation is proportionate.


It was suggested that membership be reviewed in the near future once the Catholic primary schools convert to academy status.


RESOLVED    -           (i)         That Schools Forum agreed to the proposed change in

the Schools Forum constitution.


                                    (ii)        That the Schools Forum request that School Governor

Support try and recruit a secondary maintained school governor.



Risk Protection - Outcome of the DfE Consultation pdf icon PDF 39 KB

Carole Smith, Resources and Digital


Forum received a report on the roll out of Risk Protection Assurance (RPA) to maintained schools.


Historically this was £25 per head, however the proposal for 2020/21 is £18 per pupil. There were some positive experiences of RPA shared within the Forum.


It was noted however that RPA is not cost effective for Catholic school as they have insurance purchased through the Diocese.


RESOLVED    -           That the Schools Forum noted the information in the report.



Central Schools Services Block pdf icon PDF 149 KB

Carole Smith, Resources and Digital


Forum received a report seeking approval to centrally retain the former retained duties element of the ESG at a flat rate of £15 per pupil. This is calculated as £358,342.


It was questioned as to how much is being requested to be paid by schools for EMTAS and whether this is to be fully funded by schools. It was agreed that officers would look into this.


RESOLVED    -           That the Schools Forum approved the central retention of

funding allocated for retained duties.



Mainstream Schools Funding pdf icon PDF 402 KB


The Forum received the APT that has been submitted to the DfE for approval following a query around PFI charge. There had been an overestimate in the assumed increase in the estimated PFI charges.


RESOLVED    -           That the Schools Forum approved the factor values outlined in

the report and noted the information in Appendix one of the report.



Date and Time of Next Meeting

Thursday 12 March 2020, 2pm Dryden Centre


The next meeting will be held on Thursday 12 March 2020 at 2pm in the Dryden Centre.