Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council

Big plans, bright future

Children & Young People Select Committee Minutes

Thursday, 9th June, 2011
05.00 p.m.
First Floor Committee Room, Town Hall, High Street, Stockton-on-Tees, TS18 1AU
Please note: all Minutes are subject to approval at the next Meeting

Attendance Details

Cllr Miss Barbara Inman(chair), Cllr Carol Clark(vice chair), Cllr Ben Houchen, Cllr Elliot Kennedy, Cllr Ken Lupton, Cllr Ray McCall, Cllr Ross Patterson, Cllr Tracey Stott
Beccy Brown(RES), Jane Humphreys(CESC), Sarah Whaley, Judith Trainer (LD)
In Attendance:
Cllr Ann McCoy
Apologies for absence:
Cllr Mick Eddy, Mr D Campbell, Mr M Frank
Item Description Decision
AGREED that the minutes be approved.
AGREED that:

1) the information be noted

2) further information be provided as requested

3) consultation proposals for the Early Years strand be presented to Committee on 29 June 2011.
AGREED that:

the information be noted.

that the start time of any Children and Young People meetings be changed from 4.30pm to 5.00pm.
5.00pm - 5.45pm


Consideration was given to the minutes of the meeting which was held on the 30th March 2011 for approval.
Consideration was given to the Scope and Draft Cabinet report of the officer led Task and Finish review of the impact of the Introduction of the Early Intervention Grant.

The Programme Manager gave the Committee a brief background account of the review and explained that the review followed on from an initial report to Cabinet which was held on 17th March 2011. Members were informed that this review was divided into a number of stages as detailed within the scope of the review which would report to Cabinet at different times.

The main issues/services that would be covered by the review included:

1) Integrated Youth Support Services - To implement the recommendations of the earlier EIT reviews of Universal Youth Services and Integrated Youth Support Services and Cabinet decisions of 17 February 2011
2) Other EIG related services and back office support - Examining services crossing age ranges, including implementation of proposed staffing restructuring agreed by Cabinet in March 2011 with any further proposals affecting front line delivery to be subject to further agreement by Cabinet
3) Early Years and Childcare - A fundamental review of early years services reporting to Cabinet in the Autumn

The main issues discussed were as follows:

Integrated Youth Support Services

- The consultation process had been very constructive and significant progress had been made towards achieving the transition to the new staffing structure through the voluntary redundancy process.

- The target date for implementation of the new structure was 7th July with a view to delivering the newly designed service from September 2011.

Other EIG related services and back office support

_ The Programme Manager outlined proposed savings in this work stream. This involved reorganisation of back office functions authorised by Cabinet in March and proposals for a small range of front office services which would be subject to further approval by Cabinet.

- Members supported the proposals for savings identified.

Early Years

Work to date had focused on information gathering across the Borough including work to identify areas of most need using a range of measures highlighting where children were under achieving in early years.

Mapping of the areas had also tried to take account of natural communities and boundaries and Members discussed the attached Map at Appendix 3 of the report which highlighted areas of particular need.

The Programme Manager also highlighted that the review needed to have regard to the current guidelines regarding the provision of Children's Centres. Members heard that one centre per 800 children under 5 years was a general guideline, however, in areas of higher need it was recommended that the ratio was one centre per 500 children and in areas of lower need the ratio was one centre per 1200 children. Members acknowledged that the location of Children's Centres had evolved over time but recognised the need for a complete review to establish where Children's Centres should be located in the future.

The Director of CESC confirmed that at this stage of the review no assumptions were being made as to where Children's Centres would be located or how services would be provided. The Programme Manager also highlighted that a Children's Centre did not have to be a building.

Members were being asked to agree, in principle, to a more targeted approach to delivery of services and, if this approach was accepted, a consultation document will be developed for further consideration at the end of June prior to consideration by Cabinet in July.

The main issues discussed were as follows:

- There was general support for a more targeted approach to service delivery.

- Members noted that current usage of Children's Centres in some areas of need was not by families living within that area. It was also highlighted that there was evidence of families travelling to gain access to a range of activities.

- Concerns were raised by Members about facilities being provided specifically in areas of need which were not being used by families most in need. This suggested a fresh approach might be needed.

- members acknowledged that a Children's Centre didn't have to be a building and consideration needed to be given to other models of service delivery.

- members stressed that the consultation exercise had to focus in particular on those families not accessing services and consultation also needed to take place with the Voluntary and Community Sector and Private Sector.

The Committee requested further information as follows:

1) That the proformas used to collate and evaluate the data for each strand be summarised and distributed to Members of the Committee to enable better understanding of the proposals.

2) Data be provided analysing current take up in Children's Centres.
The Team Leader for Scrutiny gave the Committee a brief overview of the Committee's forthcoming meetings.

Members heard that the meeting which was to be held on the 22nd June 2011 would include an annual overview, providing an insight of Service areas which fell into the remit of this Committee.

Items for July's meeting were still to be confirmed, however Autumn would see the final proposals in respect of the Early Years strand of the Early Intervention Grant review.
Members were asked if they would like to change the start time that the Committee met to 5.00pm

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