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Postal Address

Shropshire Council
Abbey Foregate

Agenda and minutes


Contact: Julie Fildes  Committee Officer


No. Item


Apologies for Absence and Substitutions


Apologies were received from Councillors Alan Mosley and Dave Tremellen. Councillor Pauline Dee attended as substitute for Councillor Dave Tremellen.


Disclosable Pecuniary Interests

Members are reminded that they must not participate in the discussion or voting on any matter in which they have a Disclosable Pecuniary Interest and should leave the room prior to the commencement of the debate.



None were declared.


Minutes of the meeting held on 20th May 2020 pdf icon PDF 217 KB

To consider the Minutes of the Performance Management Scrutiny Committee meeting held on 20th May 2020.  [Attached]


RESOLVED: that the minutes of the Performance Management Scrutiny Committee meeting held on 20th May 2020 be approved as a correct record and signed by the Chair.


Public Question Time

To receive any questions, statements or petitions from the public of which members of the public have given notice.  Deadline for notification for this meeting is 11am on Monday 8th June 2020.


There were no public questions.


Member Question Time pdf icon PDF 629 KB

To receive any questions of which members of the Council have given notice.  Deadline for notification for this meeting is 4.30pm on Friday 5th June 2020.


The Chair advised that six Member questions had been received.  A copy of the report containing the detailed questions and their formal response is attached to the signed minutes.  The Chair agreed that the question [4] submitted by Councillor Heather Kidd could be read by Councillor Ruth Houghton on her behalf and as Councillor Houghton was cognisant of Councillor Kidd’s views on the topic she would allow her to submit a supplementary question on Councillor Kidd’s behalf.


i)     Received from Councillor Ruth Houghton in relation to the Care Sector.  By way of a supplementary question Councillor Houghton asked how the Council monitored the payment rate the Carers received.  The Acting Interim Chief Executive, Andy Begley, agreed to provide a detailed response outside of the meeting which would be circulated to all Members of the Committee.  He confirmed that the Council worked with providers through Shropshire Partners in Care to understand current payments to frontline staff.


ii)    Received from Councillor David Vasmer in relation to Climate Change.  By way of a supplementary question Councillor Vasmer asked if the documents referred to in the response could be published for the Performance Management Committee that would consider Climate Change.  The Portfolio Holder for Adult Social Services and Climate Change responded that recent issues had delayed the publication of papers due to the redeployment of staff to critical functions. Whilst the work on the strategy had been delayed, the work on the projects to reduce carbon emissions had proceeded.


iii)   Received from Councillor Viv Parry in relation to the mowing of grass verges. By way of a supplementary question Councillor Parry requested that priority be given to the management of verges in the towns.


iv)   Received from Councillor Heather Kidd and asked by Councillor Ruth Houghton on the effect of Covid-19 on care homes.  By way of a supplementary question Councillor Houghton asked whether more detailed information could be given on the outcomes for the under 65 age group with learning difficulties. The Acting Interim Chief Executive, Andy Begley responded that there was ongoing work with the ESP partnership on assessing the outcome of Covid-19 infection for this age group, but the Council could only provide information on those people from this group who were in receipt of council services.  More specific reporting was done through the CQC and national reporting.


v)    Received from Councillor Roger Evans on the recovery plan. By way of a supplementary question Councillor asked why all opposition Councillors were being excluded from the two task groups which had been established when all other authorities were working cross party in response to the Covid-19 crisis.  The Chair advised that this needed to be taken up with the Leader of Council. The Portfolio Holder for Adult Social Services and Climate Change advised that a cross party oversight and governance committee was in the process of being established.


vi)   Received from Councillor Roger Evans on the local outbreak control plan. By way of a supplementary question Councillor Evans asked that the cross  ...  view the full minutes text for item 72.


Schools Operation during the Covid-19 Pandemic pdf icon PDF 936 KB

To receive a presentation from the Acting Interim Chief Executive, Karen Bradshaw, on the impact of the Covid-19 virus on the operation of schools.


Contact:  Karen Bradshaw     tel 01743 254201

Additional documents:


The Acting Interim Chief Executive, Director of Children’s Services, Karen Bradshaw introduced the presentation. [Copy attached to the signed minutes.]


The Principal Schools Improvement Advisor advised Members of attendance at schools from the start of the Covid-19 until the end of May which showed that a greater percentage of children in Shropshire continued to attend school than the national average. Members noted that the numbers of vulnerable children attending schools have significantly increased over this time. Members noted that since the wider reopening on 1st June of schools there has been a phased reopening of schools and numbers attending schools has risen gradually, with attendance rates in line with national figures.


The Principal Schools Improvement Advisor outlined the ways that communication with schools had been maintained during the lock down period, with schools being supported and challenged.  A parent helpline had also been established to ensure that school places were provided for the children of key workers and vulnerable children, this included early year settings.  Schools were asked to assess the needs of their vulnerable children to ensure they were in the most suitable setting through a RAG rating template.


Members heard that the Local Authority had requested maintained schools to carry out a risk assessment in preparation for the wider reopening.  Despite tight deadlines all schools completed the assessments by the deadline and no reopenings were delayed due to incomplete risk assessments.


The Service Manager for Learning and Skills, Children’s Services reported on home to school transport.  School transport had continued throughout the lock down period and usage rates mirrored the school attendance rates.  National guidance is detailed in regard to social distancing and has impacted on the number of children who can be carried and how this is done, with carriers operating at 25% capacity, which will not be manageable once schools fully reopen if restrictions are still in place. Provisions were put into place to support and conserve the supplier network through paying ‘Supplier Relief’ until the end of June and possibly extended to the end of October.


Members noted that schools had been notified that their core funding for the next year was fully protected so that all regular financial commitments would be met.  It had been acknowledged that schools had incurred additional costs as a direct result of the Covid-19 pandemic.  In April, Government guidance had been issued which outlined the additional costs that could be reclaimed up to a certain funding limit based on a banding scheme according to the size of the school.  Other costs not included in the initial guidance had been identified and it was hoped that the Government would produce further guidance on how these costs would be recognised and met, such as provision of PPE. Loss of private income was also of concern. As the employer for maintained schools the Council was responsible for furloughing staff who were paid directly from private income.  Only one application could be made to Government by a single employer and this had  ...  view the full minutes text for item 73.


Quarter 4, 2019/20 Corporate Performance Report pdf icon PDF 565 KB

To receive the Quarter 4, 2019/20 Corporate Performance Report. To consider the key underlying and emerging performance issues, to identify any performance areas for further consideration or referral. [Report attached]


Contact Tom Dodds     tel 01743 258509


The report was introduced by the Intelligence and Insight Manager.  Members noted that quarter 4 was an extraordinary period with both the severe flooding and the onset of the Covid-19 pandemic.  The impact of these events is demonstrated in the report.


In response to a Member’s question, the Intelligence and Insight Manager I advised that the Local Transport Plan would be considered by the Road Safety Task and Finish Group as it currently existed.  The Scrutiny Officer advised that the completion date for the document was 2021 which he considered to be a realistic date for such a large report.  Members noted the that Road Safety Task and Finish group was the appropriate place for detailed consideration of the first drafts of the plan.


The Interim Acting Chief Executive, Director of Adult Services observed in response to a Members question regarding the Homeless Strategy, that The Homeless Agenda had moved forward at a staggering pace with a large increase in the numbers homeless people firstly due to the flooding and then individuals who had been previously accommodated by other households and could no longer be during the Covid-19 lockdown. He continued that this issue would have a significant impact on the Council.


A Member requested further information on the Council’s programme to provide children with laptops during the Covid-19 crisis.  The Interim Acting Chief Executive, Director of Children’s Services, advised that the allocation of laptops was not to schools but individual children. Children who met the criteria for laptop allocation where being identified.  Five hundred laptops had been received and would be distributed as soon as possible.


Members endorsed the comments made on the outstanding work done by the IT Department to continue the work of the Council and developing new ways of working.




That the report be noted.






Future Work Programme pdf icon PDF 561 KB

To consider the future work programme of the Committee [Report attached]


Contact Danial Webb     Tel 01743 258509


The Overview and Scrutiny Officer introduced the Future Work Programme Report and members noted the items set out within it for the year up to November 2020. 


Members noted that the suspended Overview Committees would be re-established in September 2020 and topics included in the Work Programme that were within the remit of those Committees would be returned to them. 


The Chair of the Health and Adult Social Care Overview and Scrutiny Committee confirmed that it would be meeting in July 2020 and the Joint HOSC would be meeting in early August 2020.  She continued that the Joint Chairs of the Joint HOSC had had regular meetings with colleagues in the NHS to identify topics where the Committee could add value to the work being undertaken.


The Director of Adult Social Care confirmed that work had been undertaken with health and social care partners across both the Shropshire and Telford and Wrekin Authority areas as part of a systematic approach at pace, to do the right things in the right order in response to the pandemic crisis and maintaining existing development work.




That in addition to the scheduled meeting on 8th July 2020 an extra meeting will be held at the end of July.  Each meeting will have 2 agenda items determined by the Overview and Scrutiny Officer in consultation with the Committee Chair.


Date/Time of next meeting of the Committee

The Committee is scheduled to next meet at 11am on  Wednesday 8th July 2020.




That the next meeting of the Committee will be held at 11am on Wednesday 8th July 2020.


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