Agenda and draft minutes

Joint Meeting of the Cabinet / Education Skills and Culture Scrutiny Committees - Wednesday, 21st October, 2020 2.00 pm

Venue: Via Microsoft Teams

Items
No. Item

1.

Appointment of Chairperson and Vice Chairperson

Minutes:

It was agreed that Councillor S.Reynolds be appointed Chairperson and that Councillor M.Harvey be appointed Vice Chairperson for this joint meeting.                

2.

Declarations of Interests

Minutes:

The following Members made a declaration of interest at the commencement of the meeting:

 

A.Llewelyn

Re:

Report of the Director of Education, Leisure and Lifelong Learning on the Strategic School Improvement Programme, Proposal to establish

an English medium 3 - 11 school to replace, Alltwen, Godre'rgraig and Llangiwg Primary Schools as his wife is a teacher at Cwmtawe Community School and is a Governor at Ysgol Gymraeg Ystalyfera Bro Dur but has dispensation to speak and vote.

L.Purcell

Re:

Report of the Director of Education, Leisure and Lifelong Learning on the Strategic School Improvement Programme, Proposal to establish

an English medium 3 - 11 school to replace, Alltwen, Godre'rgraig and Llangiwg Primary Schools as she is a Governor at Rhydyfro Primary School and Cwmtawe Community School but has dispensation to speak and vote.

 

R.Davies

Re:

Report of the Director of Education, Leisure and Lifelong Learning on the Strategic School Improvement Programme, Proposal to establish

an English medium 3 - 11 school to replace, Alltwen, Godre'rgraig and Llangiwg Primary Schools as she is a Governor at Godre'rgraig Primary School and Ysgol Gyfun Ystalyfera.

 

R.Phillips

Re:

Report of the Director of Education, Leisure and Lifelong Learning on the Strategic School Improvement Programme, Proposal to establish

an English medium 3 - 11 school to replace, Alltwen, Godre'rgraig

and Llangiwg Primary Schools as she is a Governor at Ysgol Gynradd Gymraeg Trebannws and Ysgol Gynradd Gymraeg Pontardawe but has dispensation to speak and vote.

 

A.Amor

Re:

 

Report of the Director of Education, Leisure and Lifelong Learning on the Strategic School Improvement Programme, Proposal to establish

an English medium 3 - 11 school to replace, Alltwen, Godre'rgraig

and Llangiwg Primary Schools as he is a Governor at Ysgol Gymraeg Ystalyfera Bro Dur but has dispensation to speak and vote.

 

 

3.

Strategic School Improvement Programme - Proposal to establish an english medium 3 - 11 school to replace, Alltwen, Godre'rgraig and Llangiwg Primary Schools. (enclosed within Cabinet Papers)

Minutes:

The Strategic School Improvement Programme was presented to Members, which subject to Cabinet approval, would consult on a proposal to establish an English-medium school for 3-11 year olds to replace Alltwen, Godre'rgraig and Llangiwg Primary Schools; the proposed school would include a specialist learning support centre and would be in a new build premises to accommodate pupils from the current catchment areas of the three mentioned primary schools, all of which would close on 31st August 2024. Officers explained that one of the main purposes of the consultation was to obtain the comments and concerns of the stakeholders associated with those schools, in order to take forward the best possible solution in the valley areas.

It was proposed that the new school would be built on land in Council ownership at Parc Ynysderw Pontardawe and it would form part of the learning, health and wellbeing community campus made up of Cwmtawe Community School and Pontardawe Leisure Centre.

Officers emphasised that the staff, pupils and governors of Cwmtawe Community School were not materially involved in this proposal. It was mentioned in the report that previously Neath Port Talbot Council’s 21st Century Schools Band B Strategic Outline Plan submitted a proposal to Welsh Government for a new build middle school for 3-16 year olds; however, following informal discussions with stakeholders, including governors and all the schools in the valley, there was a wide spread agreement that a new primary school was needed and there was no support for a 3-16 model. It was therefore decided that the scheme should be amended to a 3-11 primary school model.

A discussion took place in relation to the finer details of the school, which included the following:

·       It was stated that the proposed school would accommodate 630 full time primary pupils and 140 part time nursery pupils; this would be the largest primary school in Neath Port Talbot;

·       Officers mentioned that the backlog maintenance elements that would be eradicated included over £2million for removal of the primary schools and over £1.2million associated with the swimming pool;

·       The case for the Learning Support Centre (LSC) was detailed to be created following the completion of reviews on the number and type of planned places and assessment provision across Neath Port Talbot; it was identified that there was a need for extra places in the areas of Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and Social, Emotional and Behavioural Difficulties (SEBD). It was proposed that the new school included a LSC for up to 16 primary aged pupils with a statement of ASD;

·       The report highlighted that there would be a new swimming pool established and that it would replace the existing Pontardawe Swimming Pool; it was expressed to Welsh Government that the new pool would provide an additional facility alongside the leisure centre, revitalising and increasing the health and well-being facilities in the Swansea Valley area;

·       In relation to transport, it was noted that most pupils associated with the proposal lived within 2 miles of the new site and  ...  view the full minutes text for item 3.