24 January 2019

This Noticeboard includes a message from Dr Tim O'Neill, the updated Critical Incident guidance for schools, an update to the Model Safeguarding Policy, training courses and much more.

Included in this update:

From the Director

Dear colleagues

This week I have spent quite a bit of time on SEND which will be an area of focus in the coming weeks and months following the publication of the written statement of action. All staff and partners have a role to play in improvement and we will need your support and expertise to make that happen for children.

I really enjoyed meeting a range of BCC staff at one of our offices last week...I really felt the passion and drive to continue to improve services for all children.

No gigs this week but I did manage a family trip to Mary Queen of Scots - cracking performance from Saoirse Ronan amongst others. Well worth seeing in my view.



Dr Tim O'Neill
Director of Education and Skills


Critical Incident Guidance

Updated guidance is available on the Birmingham City Council website to help schools be prepared for a critical incident and to ensure effective management in a difficult situation. Although it is not possible to prepare in detail for every situation it is essential to have a general plan to hand which outlines the steps that need to be taken.

The document provides some general guidance for schools in reducing the likelihood of a critical incident affecting them and the development of critical incident management plans to know what steps to take should a critical incident occur.

LINK: https://www.birmingham.gov.uk/downloads/download/425/critical_incident_management_guidance_for_schools

Model Safeguarding & Child Protection Policy - 2019 update

There have been several changes to the Model Policy for this year:
A codicil update to include the new DfE guidance on Mental Health and the new Birmingham guidance on Criminal Exploitation and Gang Affiliation.

Some major structural changes to the policy itself following Ofsted's critique of its implementation in schools. Ofsted had no major issue with the policy (following codicil insert in Sept/Oct), but have noted that in some settings the policy hadn't been personalised sufficiently.

The 'new look' policy should be easier to read by staff and contains the same information as before (including the January '19 codicil update), but includes a:
*   'So in our school...' column,
*   Highlighted all the sections where names need to be added,
*   Highlighted areas where school information needs to be deleted
to make the policy yours.

I would advise that you review this new version and ask your Governing Body to adopt it as all future codicils will be issued against this format.

LINK: https://www.birmingham.gov.uk/downloads/file/13434/model_safeguarding_and_child_protection_policy_for_education_2019_-_2020

CONTACT: Jon Needham (jon.j.needham@birmingham.gov.uk)

UNICEF Rights Respecting Award: Acorns Children's Hospice

Acorns Children's Hospice is delighted to be the first non-school organisation to join the UNICEF Rights Respecting Award programme. At Acorns we place children at the centre of our services, our aim is to ‘ Make Every Day Count’ supporting and empowering the children to reach their full potential, have fun and be happy. The Acorns teams are excited about working towards the Bronze Award and already have activities in mind we can undertake with some of the children.  Acorns opened its first Hospice in Birmingham 30 years ago in 1988.  We offer a network of specialist care and ongoing support for children who are life-limited or life-threatened up to the age of 18 and their families. Last year we supported more than 871 life limited children and children and more than 200 siblings through the work in our hospices and groups in community settings.  We have three 10-bed hospices based in Birmingham, Walsall and Worcester and a dedicated Family Service Team who also offer support in the home environment. 

CONTACT: razia.butt@birmingham.gov.uk

New Vacancies; Out of Schools Settings Pilot in Birmingham

We are delighted to advertise five posts to work in our Out of School Settings Programme as follows:

  • Project Co-ordinator x 1
  • Engagement Officers x 3
  • Programme Analyst x1

This is part of national pilot programme to improve safeguarding in out of school settings and full details can be accessed here https://consult.education.gov.uk/regulatory-framework-unit/out-of-school-settings-voluntary-safeguarding-code/. Please note the attachments at the end of the linked page.

Here is the link to WM Jobs:

We are keen to attract candidates across your networks, so please share this link to WM Jobs where the roles are advertised and note the closing date of 5 February 2019.

CONTACT: Razia Butt (razia.butt@birmingham.gov.uk)

EYSFF Spring Term 2019 Data Collection

In order to calculate Actual EYSFF Allocations for the Spring Term 2019 and determine funding allocations for the Early Years Pupil Premium, and Eligibility of 2 year old funding, the LA needs to collect data from schools based on the January 2019 CENSUS. Schools are requested to complete a data collection template and supply this data for the Spring 2019Term. Additional to the Autumn Term - please note that the Free School Meals take up numbers are requested in this form. 

Failure to supply this data will result in schools not receiving funding in 2018/19 and retrospective allocations between financial years, will not be actioned.

There were 42 schools that did not supply any data of the number of 3 & 4 year old eligible for Early Years Pupil Premium, during the Autumn term. This is an opportunity for schools to rectify this, within this January data collection return period. These outstanding returns can be returned along with the Spring returns (but you must use the Autumn term template for the Autumn term)

Please ensure all data is supplied and verified. The deadline for completion is 8th February 2019 and again without all the completed termly returns the LA will not be in a position to accurately determine a school’s funding for the financial year.

Schools may access the return from the Birmingham City Council website here.

CONTACT: Finance (fairfunding@birmingham.gov.uk)

Early Years Foundation Stage Profile Moderation Academic Year 2018-2019 

Services for Education work on behalf of Birmingham Local Authority to organise and manage statutory assessment duty for the EYFS Profile teacher assessments. Our Service is funded by the Local Authority to make school moderation visits to a minimum of 25% of schools each year.  Our moderation team will carry out the visits in the first half of the summer term, and those schools selected will be notified by letter towards the end of the Spring term.

On behalf of the Local Authority we provide high quality moderation training events led by STA accredited moderators in the second half of the spring term. All schools recognise the value and importance of these moderation training events in order to develop practitioners’ understanding of the Early Learning Goals and ensure consistency in the assessments being made.  

Due to funding arrangements to the Local Authorities for EYFS Profile moderation activities we are no longer able to provide funded places. As part of our statutory duty on behalf of the Local Authority we must continue to provide advice on all aspects of assessment in the EYFS, training, including on ‘agreement trialling’.

The focus areas for the training this academic year are, ‘Mathematics’, ‘Personal, Social and Emotional Development’ and ‘Understanding the World’. The half day  training which is led by STA accredited moderators and will provide key updates regarding the revised documentation, assessment data, standardisation activities (agreement trialling) utilising the exemplification materials produced by the Standards and Testing Agency and moderation of practitioners own assessment for the three areas of learning.

LINK: https://www.servicesforeducation.co.uk/our-offer/eyfs-profile-standardisation-and-moderation-training-2019/

CONTACT: serena.caine@servicesforeducation.co.uk

Budget Management Training

This is a reminder to schools that places are still available on the Budget Management Training Course taking place on 28 February 2019 and 1 March 2019 at the Midlands Arts Centre, Edgbaston, Birmingham. The cost of the course is £495 per person.

The training is specifically tailored for Birmingham schools and will cover:

  • Introduction to Fair Funding and schools finances
  • Budget Planning
  • Budget Management and Monitoring including the role of the Governing Body, Value for  Money and Financial Regulations and Procedures

The course is delivered by experienced staff from Schools Financial Services in a relaxed and friendly atmosphere where all questions and participation are welcomed. This course consistently receives very positive feedback from its participants and may be suitable if:

  • You are a new Head Teacher or aspiring to become a Head Teacher
  • Your role includes the analysis of school resources
  • You are responsible for budget planning and the management of the budget
  • Budget monitoring is a major part of your role and responsibility
  • You are being trained on the NPQH or are a keen Deputy Head Teacher
  • You are a newly appointed Bursar, Finance Officer or School Business Manager
  • You are a school based member of staff responsible for finance and require some refresher training
  • You are just interested in school finance

For further information or to book a place on the course please contact Pat Wilson on 0121 675 9857 or patricia.wilson@birmingham.gov.uk

Alternatively you can book a place via the Birmingham Education Support Services website at http://www.birminghameducationsupportservices.co.uk/Training?Id=3644.

Termly Network meeting for Careers Coordinators/Advisers in Schools

 Careers Network Meeting Thursday 14th February 2019

10.00am - 12.00pm Aston University Engineering College, 1 Lister St, Birmingham B7 4AG

The Termly Network meeting for Careers Leaders/Advisers in school and colleges, to support them in their role, providing an opportunity to network and share ideas in response to  local and national developments.

As well as local and national updates, the February meeting will include presentations from Jenny Connick from Talentino about supporting young people with special education needs, and Ruth Richardson from Creative and Cultural Careers sharing opportunities in her sector. Please register your attendance at https://bep.education/events/careers-network-meeting/

Forum for Action on Careers and Enterprise (FACE)

The Forum for Action on Careers and Enterprise (FACE) is a citywide group that is developing a strategic approach to supporting schools (and colleges) with careers.

Members of the group are representative of key organisations working with schools – Birmingham City Council, Birmingham Enterprise Adviser Network, Birmingham Education Partnership, Job Centre Plus Support for Schools, Titan Partnership and West Midlands Police and Crime Commissioner’s Office.

The purpose is to develop a coherent careers and enterprise offer to schools to ensure consistency in the information and opportunities available to schools and young people.

A leaflet giving further information is attached here.

CONTACT:  Julie Stirrup (Julie.A.Stirrup@birmingham.gov.uk)

Suppliers and Services Conference: Two weeks to go

Our Free Health Checks have identified, on average schools could be saving £2425 per annum by using our contracted suppliers.

Join us and see for yourself how we are saving schools valuable time & money

Suppliers & Services Conference 2019
Wednesday 6 February 2019 - 8:30am - 2:45pm
Aston Villa Football Club, The Holte Suite, Trinity Road, Birmingham B6 6HE
FREE TO ATTEND (2 free delegate places per educational establishment)

Full Agenda and Exhibitor information can be viewed by visiting:  www.birminghameducationsupportservices.co.uk/Page/12244

School Visits to the Library of Birmingham

Although Birmingham is going through major redevelopments The Library of Birmingham is open and welcomes school visits. For the latest information of road works see: https://www.birmingham.gov.uk/roadworks

There’s a lot to do in the Library. Bring along your own worksheets or share a story on the Story Steps. Take your pick from the huge range of fiction and information books, Shakespeare collection, folk and fairy tales, Black British Arts and Culture and other collections. The Story Steps seats up to 90 children!  We have 6 children’s computers – just bring your library card and PIN. Tour LoB for fascinating views from the 7th floor Secret Garden and 9th floor Skyline Viewing – a great discussion topic about our city’s development.

There is lunch space on a first come first saved basis, so let us know on your registration form.

If children have a Birmingham library card they can use it at the Library of Birmingham. If they haven’t joined the parents/guardians can register online (see link). Give us the Self Registration number so we can process the library card.

If you have further queries about visiting then email or just complete a registration form on the website and send it to us childrens.library@birmingham.gov.uk



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