Secondary Strategy Group Meeting by k43ThJ


									                                   Secondary Strategy Group Meeting
                                         27th November 2008.

Present:         L. Jackson, F. Heggarty, M. Osborne Town, B. Dewar, J. Myatt, N. Daws, S. Bardwell.

Apologies:       C. Thompson, G. Coombs, B. Gilson

                                         Item                                           Action

1.         Minutes of meeting held on 30th September 2008.
           These were accepted as a true and accurate record.

2.         Matters arising
           o Self evaluation programme – requests from schools’ senior
               leadership teams will be gratefully received
           o Aim Higher Learning Mentors – BD confirmed that Dave
               Reynolds had followed up the query over the changing nature
               of learning mentors’ role and that it is unlikely to change.
           o National Challenge
               BD reported that the LA had met various deadlines and
               requirements regarding the submission for resource. Our
               submission was now with Ed Balls for his assessment.
               Despite the delay, the LA had carried on with the improvement
               agendas with schools, working on the assumption the NC
               resources would be forthcoming. NC Advisers had been
               assigned, a training session on the Raising Attainment Plan
               (RAP) had been held in October and officers and NCAs had
               worked with schools to prepared their own RAP. On 9th
               December there will be a local National Challenge Board
               meeting where NCAs, LA office and National Strategy
               Regional Directors will meet to assess the schools’ progress.
               BD explained how there was now further DCSF initiatives – a
               similar process for primary schools (though not to be called
               National Challenge) and ‘Gaining Ground’ which will focus on
               ‘coasting’ secondary schools.
                                                                               BD to update
               BD stressed how Staffordshire will align any new Government
                                                                               headteachers at their
               initiative with our own improvement processes. There will be
                                                                               February seminar.
               dialogue with schools over the criteria to be used in the
               Gaining Ground process.
                                     Item                                             Action

3.   Post 16 Action Plan
     JM tabled the latest Post 16 data analysis explaining there was
     some new additions. The CVA tables were based on DCSF data
     but there was a lack of clarity about how the figures had been
     arrived at. ERA were pursuing this – e.g. discounting of ‘U’ grades
     and General Studies; which KS4 data was used. The data showed
     64% of Staffordshire schools are in the bottom 20% nationally.
      o A letter for schools was tabled outlining some subject based
          research carried out by subject officers. Their research was
          designed to help schools explore subject performance. Every
          school will receive a CD room carrying the subject research.
          The group discussed the need to broaden the offer for
          students and the importance of IAG.
      o JM and SB updated the group on the LSC Challenge and
          Support agenda whereby school sixth forms causing concern
          had to be identified and names sent to the DCSF. BD
          explained that the LA would try to minimise such an unhelpful
          initiative by ensuring our own processes prevailed.
      o JM tabled a paper identifying post 16 key issues and a range         PL to research Lancs
          of action to support raising achievement. E.g. a learning visit
          to Lancashire; exploration of BTEC areas that are doing better
          than Staffordshire. She drew attention to the Framework for
          Excellence which will be a key contributor to the future funding
                                                                             L3 focus group will
          process. Other important issues are the high levels of drop
                                                                             produce a guide for using
          out at 17, the high number of ‘U’ grades at A5; the monitoring
          of quality in colleges and sixth form centres. It was agreed we
          now have enough Post 16 data but what is needed is a clear
          process for making best use of it.
      o Keith Hedger’s SIA reports are ready to be sent to schools and
          he has been asked by L3 focus G to produce an independent
          report on Post 16 issues in Staffordshire.
      o The Post 16 Head teachers Seminar has been fixed for 23rd            SB to send MOT the
          January 2009 at Kingston. Chris Leach will be notifying head       evidence form different
          teachers of the date. The seminar will provide a forum for         reports comparing post 16
          heads to discuss post 16 in detail, exploring different forms of   provision. PL/JM/SB to
          provision.                                                         support evidence
                                                                             gathering process for the
                                   Item                                          Action

4.   14-19 Survey Inspection: Diploma in Construction and Built
     Environment, Tamworth

     SB updated the group on the key findings: positive outcomes in
     terms of planning, management of the diploma: development points
     focussed on CPD for staff and tracking pupils’ progress.

5.   Update on Staffordshire’s 2008 Performance
     SB tabled a paper showing Staffs’ results at Post 16, KS4 and 3
     compared to national and statistical neighbours. KS4 data was
     extremely positive though the 2009 target for 5+ A*-C including    Group to discuss KS3 at
     English and Maths of 57% is challenging. The removal of KS3        the next meeting.
     targets, whilst welcome, means there is uncertainty around KS3.

6.   Secondary Strategy Priorities for 2008/09

     SB explained that the County’s priorities were:
               o Continuing to improvement KS4, no schools below
                   30% floor target
               o Narrowing the gap: FSM, Boys, CiC, high attainers,
                   some minority ethnic groups
               o Post 16
     The group considered current secondary strategy actions and
     discussed what seemed to be having the most effect. LJ stressed
     the importance of accepting that pupils will not be able to work
     much at home. Revision packages, after school clubs, holiday
     study sessions and lots of intensive work at times leading upto
     exams were all things that had worked effectively at her school.

     BD commented on the important role of parents and carers and
     how SID will be working with the newly appointment Parents’

     SB explained how the Directorate was committed to the Narrowing
     the Gap project run by NFER and tabled information about the 12
     Golden Threads.
                                                                        Heads to contribute
                                                                        evidence of effective
     LJ and FH reported on the lack of involvement of schools when
                                                                        strategies used to support
     CIC’s placements were changed.
                                                                        vulnerable pupils
                                                                        SB to report heads’
                                                                        concerns about CiC’s
                                                                        placements to the LAC
                                                                        action group.
                                      Item                                            Action

7.   KS4 Innovation Projects 2007/08
     ND presented his monitoring and evaluation report of these
     projects. He highlighted some very effective practice through case
     studies. He shared his tentative conclusions about key
     components which led to successful outcomes.
                o Staff relationships with students
                o Synergy with existing school systems
                o Family engagement
                o Match of resource to student need
                o Close monitoring by senior Staffordshire County
                o Possible use of school case studies at headteacher
                o Publicising the projects widely
8.   A.O.B.
      a)    SB drew the group’s attention to another government
            initiative - one to one tuition. More details will be given at
            the February meeting.                                            SB to ask GC to report at
      b)    MOT asked for examples of effective KS4 intervention             next meeting.
            strategies from school strategy managers.

9.   Date of next meeting:
     Tuesday, 10th February 2009 – 1-3pm

     Agenda Items:
     PE and sport data
     One to one tuition
     Gaining ground
     Foundation Learning Tier
     BSF Transformation Process

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