Venue: 007a and b, Civic Office, Waterdale, Doncaster DN1 3BU. View directions
Election of Chair
Nominations were sought for the Chair of SACRE for 2019/20. Councillor John Gilliver was nominated by Councillor Derek Smith and seconded by Reverend Tom McCready and duly elected.
AGREED that Councillor John Gilliver be elected as Chair of SACRE for 2019/2020.
Acceptance of Late Item of Business - Doncaster Council Consultation on the 2021-2022 School Holiday Pattern
The Chair accepted a late item of business on the agenda in relation to ‘Doncaster Council Consultation on the 2021-2022 School Holiday Pattern’, details of which had been circulated to Members prior to the meeting.
Membership - Resignation of Mr. Griffiths - Group C Teacher Associations
The Chair, Councillor Gilliver announced that notification had been received from Mr. Griffiths (National Union of Teachers - Teacher representative) that unfortunately he was no longer able to commit his time to Doncaster SACRE due to work commitments. The Committee extended thanks to Mr Griffiths for his work and contribution made to Doncaster SACRE and asked that a letter of thanks be sent to Mr. Griffiths.
Action: a letter of thanks be sent to Mr. Griffiths.
AGREED to note the resignation of Mr Griffiths and a letter of thanks be sent to Mr. Griffiths.
AGREED that the minutes of the meeting held on 21st November, 2020 be agreed as a correct record and signed by the Chair, subject to Carole Cahm’s religious denomination being amended to read as ‘Jewish’ representative.
EXCLUSION OF PUBLIC AND PRESS
The public and press be excluded during consideration of Agenda item 5, ‘Religious Education GCSE Entries and Local Authority Results’.
Lat Blaylock, Consultant RE Today, provided feedback on the Primary and Secondary training held earlier that day. It was noted that evaluation forms received for primary schools who had attended the training event had been forwarded to Sameena Choudry. It was noted that further work was required to secure greater attendance by secondary schools.
1. Sameena Choudry, Learning Standards and Effectiveness Officer to contact secondary schools to explore their individual training needs.
2. Sameena Choudry to provide evaluation feedback from those schools that had attended the primary school training to SACRE.
Lat Blaylock tabled a document, as attached at Appendix A that provided an overview of key national developments from RE Today: Spring 2020 Update. In particular, the following issues were highlighted:-
Guidance on RE and Collective Worship in Academies
It was noted that Wigan and Luton had developed guidance in respect of Collective Worship in Academies. Mr. Blaylock indicated that he would contact them to seek their permission to share such information with Doncaster SACRE. It was agreed that a paper on this issue be presented to the next meeting.
1. Lat Blaylock to contact Wigan and Luton to seek their permission if guidance produced by both Councils in respect of Collective Worship could be shared with Doncaster SACRE.
2. Sameena Choudry, in consultation with Lat Blaylock to prepare a report in relation to the above issue for the next meeting.
NASACRE National Conference and AGM 2020: Monday, 18th May ‘Authority in RE’
Further to the last meeting, Lat Blaylock requested representation from SACRE to attend the event. Both Sandra Norburn and Tara Moxon expressed an interest to attend the event. Members agreed that it would be beneficial to send 2 representatives to the event.
1. Sameena Choudry to liaise with Paul Ruane, Head of Learning Provision to determine if funding was available to send 2 SACRE Members (Sandra Norburn, Humanist and Tara Moxon, Teacher representative) to the NASACRE National Conference on 18th May (subject to the necessary approvals).
2. Sameena Choudry to liaise with Lat Blaylock to ensure wider circulation of details of the NASACRE Conference and AGM 2020 ‘Authority for RE’ event on 18th May, 2020 to schools and to be included on the Council’s Portal system.
Collective Worship in Academies and Free Schools
In connection with this item, Sameena Choudry referred to the possibility of SACRE undertaking a survey of schools to determine among other things, the continuous professional development needs for teachers, those schools that are withdrawing from Collective Worship responsibility, the time being spent on the teaching of RE and for secondary schools those that were delivering RE GCSE studies.
Action: Sameena Choudry to liaise with Lat Blaylock in connection with the above and a report on this issue be included on the agenda for the next meeting.
Timing of SATs Tests in 2021: Applications available for Muslim pupils’
Sameena Choudry reported that Eid-ul-Fitr was likely to be held on the evening of 12th May, 2020 ... view the full minutes text for item 6.
Religious Education GCSE Entries and Local Authority results
Further to the last meeting, Sameena Choudry presented a verbal report on Doncaster schools 2019 Religious Education GCSE Entries and Local Authority results. In presenting the information, comparisons were made with the previous two years RE GCSE results, noting that in 2017, the way that exams were marked had changed from grading candidates from ‘A’ to ‘U’, with ‘C’ being a pass to scoring candidates from ‘1’ to ‘U’, with ‘9’ being the highest and ‘U’ being the lowest grade. In assessing the results, Sameena Choudry focussed on candidates scoring ‘4’ or above (4 being a standard pass and ‘5’ being a strong pass).
2019 RE GCSE Entries
It was noted that in 2019, 533 pupils that were entered for the full GCSE course and as a result of this, 6 secondary schools had entered pupils for 4 different examination boards as follows:-
1st Exam Board had 139 entries from 3 school, with the first school having 39 entries, the second school, 31 entries and the third school with 16 entries.
2nd Exam Board had 258 entries from 1 school
3rd Exam Board had 14 entries from 1 school
4th Exam Board had 125 entries from 1 school
2018 RE GCSE Entries
In 2019, the total number of entries for GCSE full course was 530 pupils, with 8 secondary schools entering pupils for GCSE RE for 5 different exam boards as follows:-
1st Exam Board had 121 entries from 3 schools, with the first school having 14 entries, the second school, 65 entries and the third school with 42 entries.
2nd Exam Board had 242 entries from 1 school
3rd Exam Board had 14 entries from 1 school
4th Exam Board had 31 entries from 1 school
5th Exam Board had 122 entries from 1 school
2017 RE GCSE Entries
The overall entries in 2017 for GCSE full course was 530, 3 different exam boards, with 12 secondary schools entering pupils for GCSE RE as follows:-
1st Exam Board had 468 entries from 10 schools, with the first school having 27 entries, the second school 13 entries, the third school with 17 entries, the fourth school had 40 entries, the fifth school 17 entries, the sixth school 8 entries, the seventh school 56 entries, the ninth school 256 entries and the tenth school with 1 entry.
2nd Exam Board had 100 entries from 1 school
3rd Exam Board had 15S entries from 1 school
The entry and pass rates for each of these years were shown in the table below:-
In noting that some schools RE entries numbers have declined since 2017 and recognising the Ofsted requirement for the ‘three Is’ and RE, Members supported the suggestion that as part of the survey to seek information from schools on a variety of issues, SACRE could help to support schools in promoting RE.
1. Sameena ... view the full minutes text for item 7.
Sameena Choudry presented SACREs Annual Report for 2018-19 which had been updated following changes proposed at the last meeting, a copy of which had been circulated to Members, prior to the meeting.
Members confirmed that they were happy to approve the Annual Report, subject to the typographical errors being corrected; in relation to the second paragraph of the Chairs introduction (on page 2), in that the word ‘prove’ being replaced with the word ‘approve’ and the capital letter ‘I’ be replaced with the lower case ‘i’ on the fifth line of the second paragraph (on page 5) of the Annual Report. Sameena Choudry undertook to amend accordingly.
In referring to the front cover of the Locally Agreed Syllabus for RE 2019-2024, (page 5 of the Annual Report), Sandra Norburn drew attention to the fact that whilst the Humanist Symbol was displayed on the front cover, the Annual Report made no reference to this in the report narrative. Sameena Choudry agreed to include this.
Action: Sameena Choudry to amend the typographical errors in the Annual Report 2018-2019, as detailed above include reference to Humanism in the narrative of the Annual Report.
The Committee also received SACREs Action Plan for 2019-2020, which had been updated following the last meeting, a copy of which had been circulated to Members prior to the meeting.
In reviewing the Action Plan, attention was drawn to typographical errors in relation to the dates identified under sections 2.5 (page 12) and 2.6 (page 13) of Priority Areas 2 and 3, ‘Actions to Achieve This’, to be corrected to read as ‘2020-2021’ and ‘2021-2022’, respectively. Sameena Choudry undertook to amend accordingly.
It was noted that the Doncaster SACRE working in partnership with the South Yorkshire RE Hub (Doncaster, Rotherham and Sheffield) to deliver a Conference in Doncaster was to be held on 25th June 2020, the same day as the SACRE meeting. Lat Blaylock, RE Consultant suggested that Members of SACRE attend this event. Details of the Conference when confirmed would be uploaded on ‘BuyDoncaster’ website.
1. Sameena Choudry to amend the Action Plan to reflect the typographical errors as set out above.
2. Sameena Choudry to include details of the South Yorkshire RE Hub Conference on 25 June, 2020 on the ‘Buy Doncaster’ website when finalised.
3. The Action Plan for 2019-20 be rag rated and included on the agenda for the Summer Term meeting and used as a basis for developing the 2019-2021 Academic Year Action Plan.
4. SACREs Annual Report 2018-2019 be approved for publication.
(1) SACREs Annual Report 2018-2019, be approved for publication on the Council’s website, subject to the typographical errors being corrected as set out above and to include reference to Humanism in the narrative of the Annual Report.
(2) The Action Plan for 2019-2020 be approved, subject to the typographical errors being corrected as set out above;
(3) Sameena Choudry to include details of the ‘South Yorkshire RE Hub Conference’ on 25th June, 2020 on ... view the full minutes text for item 8.
Late Agenda Item - 'Doncaster Council Consultation on the 2020-22 School Holiday Pattern
The Chair welcomed Neil McAllister, Learning Provision Organisation Services Manager, who was in attendance to inform SACRE on new proposals for changes to the 2021-22 School Holiday Pattern that had been circulated to schools for comment. A copy of the consultation documents had been circulated to Members prior to the meeting.
It was noted that the Local Authority (LA) has a responsibility to set the holiday pattern for Doncaster maintained community schools each year (33 of 128 schools). It was noted that the dates did not apply to faith schools or academies. Consultation was currently being undertaken to have a rolling programme of holidays for 2020/22.
The LA had consulted all schools in Doncaster and had received a lot of interest, and feedback with over 7,000 responses received on Monkey Survey. Following meetings with representatives from primary and secondary schools and Multi Academy Trusts, a range of options were discussed. A further meeting took place on 15th January, at which 23 schools in the Borough were represented and subsequently 4 options were agreed for wider consultation:-
· Traditional Holiday pattern
· Fixed Easter
· 2 week October Half Term with Fixed Easter
· 2 week October Half Term with Early Start and Fixed Easter
Neil McAllister answered a range of questions from Members on the various options put forward for consideration. SACRE noted the strong support from those schools who had responded during the pre-consultation process for having a Fixed Easter break in the first 2 weeks of April, irrespective of where the Bank Holiday fell. Whilst there was not a unanimous view from SACRE regarding having a Fixed Easter, it was felt that it might be more appropriate to refer to this break as the ‘Spring’ break rather than the ‘Easter’ break. The Committee thanked Mr McAllister for raising awareness of this consultation. It was noted that it was not within the remit of SACRE to specifically recommend an option for adoption, as it was for each individual school affected by these proposals to comment. However, the Committee thanked Mr McAllister for raising awareness of this consultation.
To conclude, the Chair on behalf of SACRE, thanked Neil McAllister for the presentation of the report and his attendance at the meeting.
AGREED that the verbal report on Doncaster Council’s consultation on the 2020-2022 School Holiday, be noted.
Dates and times of Future Meetings
The Committee was presented with proposed dates of future SACRE meetings for 2020-2022 Municipal Years.
It was noted that future dates of SACRE had been included in the Council’s Annual Schedule of Meetings that were to be formally approved by full Council at its AGM in May. The proposed meeting dates have been scheduled to take place on a Thursday to accommodate the attendance of Lat Blaylock, RE Consultant.
AGREED that the proposed dates and times of future meetings of SACRE for 2020-2022, be supported:-
· Thursday, 25th June, 2020, at 4.30 pm
· Thursday, 12th November 2020, at 4.30 pm
· Thursday, 25th February, 2021, at 4.30 pm
· Thursday, 1st July, 2021, at 4.30 pm
· Thursday, 11th November, 2021, at 4.30 pm
· Thursday, 17th February 2022, at 4.30 pm