Agenda and minutes

Overview & Scrutiny Committee
Thursday, 22nd February, 2018 7.30 pm

Venue: Conference Room, Civic Centre, Silver Street, Enfield, EN1 3XA. View directions

Contact: Stacey Gilmour 

No. Item




The Chair welcomed all attendees to the meeting and extended a special welcome to the Enfield Youth Parliament attendees.  Apologies for lateness had been received from Councillor Abdullahi.  


Agenda item 6 - SEND (Special Educational Needs and Disability Report was discussed before item 5, but for the interests of clarity the minutes are shown in the agenda order.



Members of the Council are invited to identify any disclosable pecuniary, other pecuniary or non-pecuniary interests relevant to items on the agenda.


There were no declarations of interest.



To receive a presentation from Jemma Gumble, Strategic Partnerships Development Manager.


The Chair introduced this item on the Older People’s Housing and Care Project which he reminded members, had been discussed at Cabinet on 14 February 2018. 


Lia Markwick (Service Development & Strategic Commissioning Manager) and Jemma Gumble (Strategic Partnerships Development Manager) gave a presentation on this subject.


A video was screened which gave an example of a successful new development that follows a new approach for older people with the co-location of specialist housing and community services around a ‘vibrant service hub’ for residents.


The following points were highlighted:

  • There are demographical challenges for Enfield with the number of people over 65 years forecast to increase 23% over the next 10 years.

People are living longer although often in poor health.

  • Other challenges include the pressures on housing supply and on health and social care budgets which indicate new approaches are  needed in respect of the provision of ‘assisted living’. However there are often negative perceptions of Housing with Care for older residents.
  • There are currently over 500 older people receiving intensive care packages in their own home. This number is increasing and there is a need for growth in various retirement housing and extra care housing. New choices for older people are required.
  • One way to extend the choice for older residents is to co-locate specialist housing with community services which includes health and wellbeing and might also include co-location with education/ learning/ leisure and retail facilities.  All of this to be centred around a vibrant ‘hub’ where residents and the wider community would interact. 
  • Contrary to some criticisms that older people would be centred in a ‘bubble’ the development would have an outward facing hub with the community. With the aim to promote healthy, active ageing.
  • Feasibility studies are to be undertaken to look at options.  A development at Milton Keynes which provides facilities similar to those which we may wish to offer provides properties to buy or to rent.
  • Advantages of having the co-location of housing and health services would mean that residents can be cared for at home rather than in hospital. The building quality would be high and more suited to the complex needs of older people. Other benefits expected include the reduction in temporary accommodation costs due to the subsequent increased supply of local housing.  Improvements for residents from an increase in their wellbeing, a reduction in loneliness, and improved dementia outcomes, there should also be a reduced risk of falls and a greater chance of couples being able to stay together.
  • The current vision is to have a single development for approximately 200 to 300 homes. Financing may be possible through partnership funding such as NHS contributions, Mayors funds, charitable trust funds, and HRA contributions.


The following points were made:

  • Cabinet had authorised officers to progress the strategic planning of an Older People’s Housing and Care Project.  Feasibility studies are to be undertaken.
  • Councillor Smith said he had worked for a Housing Association and had experience in this field. He stressed the importance of  ...  view the full minutes text for item 494.



To receive a report from James Carrick (AD Education Schools and Children’s Services) and Keith Rowley (Director of School Expansions & Asset Management Support)


Keith Rowley (Director of School Expansions & Asset Management Support), presented an update on the demand for school places in Enfield.  It was mentioned that this subject would be reported to Cabinet in March 2018.


The following was highlighted:

  • That there is a sufficiency of places for primary school children. However, now that children are moving up to secondary schools more secondary school places will be needed from 2019.
  • There should be an adequate number of secondary school places available for the borough following the development of the Wren Academy on the Chase Farm site (8 form entry). However should this development fail to materialise, then other contingency plans would need to be implemented.
  • The biggest demand is for special school places. There has been a significant increase in the need for high support provision for children with certain categories of special education need, in recent years. As there have been an insufficient number of places within Enfield it has been necessary for pupils to be transported to schools outside of the borough. An increase in capacity for special schools and establishments in Enfield would help in this regard.


The following issues raised

  • It was asked why there had been a significant increase in demand for special school places in recent years?  It was answered that this stems from a change in legislation from 2014 which introduced the Education Health and Care Plan (EHCP) with the remit in age widened from 5-19 years to 2-25 years age.  It should also be remembered that Enfield is a net importer of families from inner London.
  • Councillor Smith requested information on the shortage of places for children in Southgate, Southgate Green and Bowes areas.  Keith Rowley will provide this information and this is incorporated in the report to Cabinet in March.
  • That there were a significant number of vacancies across the borough in primary schools (approximately 500) this has had an adverse effect on school budgets for the year.
  • The local authority cannot set demand in an area; a new school can open with more forms of entry than required.


The report would be considered at Cabinet on 14 March 2018 when it would be recommended to

  1. Agree the continuation of the school expansion programme, with the focus on special provision and high needs pupil places and
  2. Agree the increase capacity in special schools and establishments that provide education services for some of the most acute special need categories subject to further approval for the manner in which this is to be achieved


The report was NOTED




To receive a report from James Carrick (AD Education, Schools and Children’s Services) and Clara Seery (Head of Standards & Curriculum, Schools and Children’s Services)


Clara Seery (Head of Standards & Curriculum, Schools and Children’s Services) introduced the report which provided an update on education outcomes across Enfield.  It also provided information on outcomes of statutory assessment at key stages and focused on the key accountability measures for -Early Years. Key Stage 2 and Key Stage 4 outcomes.


The following was highlighted:

  • Concerns that Enfield was shown as achieving low levels at some of the key stages compared with other local authorities.  The Early Years outcomes give Enfield at position 119th out of 152 authorities. At Key Stage 2 (Year 6) Enfield is at 136th position out of 152 authorities.
  • The low attainment levels may be in some way attributed to the high mobility of people in Enfield. However Clara said other local authorities have similar mobility issues.  Enfield is ranked 51st out of 152 most deprived boroughs. Key stage 2 results were an improvement on last year but reading attainment level is poor and would need to be focused on.
  • We were improving, and improving faster than some authorities however better outcomes are needed at primary levels, so that children are better prepared for secondary school.
  • Secondary school levels are better – For Year 8 we are in 39th position out of 152 authorities and at Key Stage 5 on a range of indicators we are in the top third of authorities.
  • Schools have a number of challenges – The retention of high quality teachers for early years pupils is a problem.  Staff often leave the area after a few years when they may wish to buy a property which is cheaper outside of London. Also, because of the high workload a number of teachers are leaving to join an alternative profession. Reductions in budgets are impacting on the support that can be offered in schools and many schools have had to reduce the number of support staff.
  • The focus is to improve standards in Key Stage 2 reading and Early years literacy.  The Early Years service is merging with School Standards and support service which will ensure a consistent approach. A successful SSIF (Strategic School Improvement funding) bid will fund an intensive reading programme to support the Key Stage 2 outcomes. The report described further steps to raise these standards and Clara was confident that significant improvements would be seen by 2020.


The following issues were raised by members:

  • It was asked how members could provide help with the retention of staff.  It was thought strategies to help meet teachers accommodation needs may help, such as providing shared ownership of homes for key workers.
  • Councillor Rye thought the secondary school sector was doing well considering how badly they were doing at primary level.  Reference was made to challenges for children as they are often interested in electronic games, which takes their interest away from reading. Teachers need to be able to focus on how to channel their attention towards this.
  • During the Early Years stage –there is a need to  ...  view the full minutes text for item 496.



To receive a report from James Carrick (AD Education, Schools and Children’s Services)


A report was presented by James Carrick (AD Education Schools and Children’s Services), on Special Educational Needs and Disabilities which gave an overview of the SEND provision for Enfield and described the challenges being faced in relation to capacity, and described what was being done in order to increase provision.


The following was highlighted

  • Over the last five years there has been a significant increase in demand for high needs placements, particularly in the Autistic Spectrum Disorder and Social emotional Mental Health (SEMH) placements
  • In the last five years the cost of out of borough special school placements has increased by £2.5 million.
  • The aim is to expand existing specialist SEND provision for children within the borough in order that they may return/ remain within the Enfield area.
  • Details of Special School expansions were listed in the report.


Councillor Levy referred to the work being done to accommodate the increased need for places and asked if this would be an on-going issue?  It was thought this matter was becoming under control – the numbers of learners applying for assessment has reduced from last year.  It was felt that when the demand for pupil places at primary schools was increased that the local authority should have looked to expand the number of places allocated for SEND provision at the same time.


Councillor Rye commented that the local authority had worked hard to increase the provision of school places in line with the increase in numbers and asked if it would be possible to restrict children from using out of borough special school places when this is available in Enfield?   An answer was given that this would be best revisited with parents when the pupil was at a transitional stage such as Years 6, 7, 9 and 11.  Families would hopefully prefer to stay in Enfield as there would be less travel involved and less need to use buses.  This situation would need to be monitored.



To agree the minutes of the meetings held on 23 November 2017 and 18 January 2018.

Additional documents:


AGREED the minutes of the meetings held on 23 November 2017 and 18 January 2018.



Provisional Call-In Dates:

· 29 March 2018

· 5 April 2018

· 19 April 2018


The date of the next business meeting is Tuesday 13th March 2018.


Provisional Call-In Dates:

29 March 2018

 5 April 2018 and

19 April 2018


The date of the next business meeting is Tuesday 13 March 2018.


Councillor Levy thanked everyone for attending the meeting.