Agenda item

Council Plan Performance Monitoring and Risk Register Review Quarter 2 of 2020/21

Medway’s Council Plan 2016/21 sets out the Council’s three priorities. This report and appendices summarise how we performed in Quarter 2 (Q2) of 2020/21 on the delivery of the two priorities relevant for this Committee: People and Growth. This report also presents the Q2 2020/21 review of strategic risks.




The Committee considered the report which summarised how the Council had performed in quarter 2 of 2020/21 on the delivery of priorities relevant to the Committee.


Members then raised a number of comments and questions, which included:


·       Childhood obesity – concern was raised about performance relating to childhood obesity and it was confirmed that a substantive report on this issue was being reported to the Committee at its next meeting.  Officers undertook to try to address the lag of data available in that report.


·       Exclusion target – a request was made that, in future, the detail on performance against this target be broken down by primary and secondary, academy and mainstream and where the child had a special education need or disability. Officers confirmed that performance was improving on this considerably and there had also been an improvement in placing children via fair access panels.


·       Persistent absence – a suggestion was made that as this had been a target at red for some time, it should be addressed by the Committee, accepting that in the current situation with the pandemic and its impact on attendance this was not a particularly helpful time to scrutinise the issue. The point was made that in September, attendance in Medway schools was one of the highest in the country so until isolation issues emerged as the infection rate had increased within Medway, children and their families had been happy and confident in children attending school. Officers undertook to confirm how absences were recorded when children were forced to learn from home due to isolation requirements/bubble closures.


·       Smoking at time of delivery – concern was raised in relating to performance on this which had declined. Officers explained that this related to the reconfiguration of the Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), which merged Kent and Medway CCGs.  The figure reported was a Kent and Medway wide figure and officers were working with the CCG and the Medway NHS Foundation Trust to disaggregate the figure. It was believed that Medway performance was still within target, although this was yet to be validated. 


·       Children not in employment, education and training (NEET) – concern was raised about the delay in supporting NEETs and finding alternative provision, given the reduction in providers which had been reported over the last few quarterly reports. In response, officers confirmed work was ongoing to support NEETs to find alternative provision and to contact young people. Doorstep contact with young people whose destination was unknown had been reinstated and the number of NEETs and unknowns was less than the same time in the previous year, so performance was improving although more work was needed.  In addition, the college was increasing the number of level 1 courses from January 2021.


·       Digital poverty – concern was raised about digital poverty and the impact this had had on some children and their ability to continue learning from home while in isolation. Officers confirmed that this had been followed up with the Department for Education as some equipment had been provided but not in the quantities expected or needed.




The Committee noted the report and requested greater detail by provision type for exclusion data and for information on the recording of school attendance during the pandemic to be sent to Members.


In accordance with Council rule 12.6, Councillors Howcroft-Scott, Johnson and Chrissy Stamp requested that their votes in favour be recorded.

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