Cabinet Member decisions

Decisions published

21/05/2020 - 20/00046 - Proposal to temporarily expand The Westlands (Secondary Academy) School by 1.5FE (45 places) for September 2021 ref: 2350    Recommendations Approved



The Commissioning Plan for Education Provision in Kent 2020-24 identifies the need to commission additional capacity in the Swale District for Year 7 secondary school places from 2019. Additional capacity was secured through a temporary expansion of Westlands Secondary Academy by 45 places for September 2019 and September 2020 Year 7 entry. September 2021 shows a projected deficit of 74 places. There is a need to secure a permanent solution to the secondary place pressures from September 2023 onwards when the size of the pressure increases and is more sustained.


By 2021-22 a deficit of -74 places is predicted for Year 7 across the Sittingbourne non-selective and Isle of Sheppey non-selective planning areas, rising to -132 by 2023-24. These figures do not include any spare capacity required for in-year admissions, or growth related to housing from any new developments.


The commissioning of a new all through school to include 2FE primary provision and 6FE secondary agreed with developers on the North Sittingbourne (Quinton Road) site has been delayed due to the housing development not coming forward according to the original timeline as set out within the Local Plan. It is hoped that that we will gain access to the site by 2021. Alternative options will be explored in case this is not possible.


The commissioning of the additional temporary 1.5FE (45 places) at Westlands Secondary School will support the demand for places in Sittingbourne in September 2021 and ensure there are sufficient places available.




The Cabinet Member for Education and Skills proposes to agree to the allocation of £1 million for the temporary expansion of Westlands Secondary School by 1.5FE for September 2021 Year 7 entry.

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Education and Skills

Decision published: 21/05/2020

Effective from: 30/05/2020

Division affected: Swale West;

Lead officer: Marisa White

20/05/2020 - 20/00018 - Post 16 Transport Policy 2020-21 ref: 2349    Recommendations Approved



The Cabinet Member for Education and Skills is asked to agree the Post 16 Transport Policy Statement for 2020/21.


Background Information:


There is a legal requirement for post 16 learners to stay in education, training or work-based learning until they reach 18 years of age, and as young adults there is an expectation they will contribute to the cost of their travel in most circumstances. Whilst there is no statutory duty to provide transport for Post 16 Learners there is a duty to consider applications for assistance with transport and to enable access to education. There are no planned changes to the Post 16 Transport Policy Statement or this commitment for the 2020/21 academic year.  KCCs primary method of meeting its obligation in regard to Post 16 Transport will be through the continued subsidy of the 16+ Travel Saver pass.


The post 16 Transport policy for Kent County Council enables access to education for Kent Learners. To assist Kent’s young adults in accessing their education in schools, colleges and through apprenticeships or work-based training provision.


Kent County Council has provided students with the opportunity to apply for a Kent 16+ Travel Saver pass which is subsidised by the Authority and can be purchased through their learning provider. The 16+ Travel Saver pass gives unlimited access to the public bus network and learning providers can choose to further subsidise this charge to their students or trainees if they wish in cases of financial hardship.


With the participation age raised to 18 years, the 16+ Travel Saver pass will widen the opportunity for Kent’s young adults to access the education provision of their choice at a subsidised cost. This may be at schools, academies, colleges or in the workplace though an apprenticeship or other work-based training provision. Support for accessing education is not prescribed and Kent use the 16+ Travel Saver pass to meet its duty to enable users’ access to education.


Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Education and Skills

Decision published: 20/05/2020

Effective from: 29/05/2020

Division affected: (All Division);

Lead officer: Craig Chapman

19/05/2020 - 20/00039 - Proposal to alter the age range at Greenfields Community Primary School, Oxford Road, Maidstone, ME15 8DF from 3-11 years to 2-11 years from September 2020 ref: 2348    Recommendations Approved

The Cabinet Member for Education & Skills is asked to agree the proposed changes to Greenfields Community Primary School, Oxford Road, Maidstone ME15 8DF to alter the age range from 3-11 years to 2-11 years from September 2020.

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Education and Skills

Decision published: 19/05/2020

Effective from: 28/05/2020

Division affected: Maidstone South;

Lead officer: Nick Abrahams

19/05/2020 - 20/00038 - Proposal to increase the designated number at Five Acre Wood School, Boughton Lane, Maidstone, ME15 9QF from 465 to 580 places from September 2020 ref: 2347    Recommendations Approved

The Cabinet Member for Education & Skills is asked to agree the proposed change to Five Acre Wood School, Boughton Lane, Maidstone ME15 9QF to increase the Designated Number from 465 to 580 places from September 2020.


Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Education and Skills

Decision published: 19/05/2020

Effective from: 28/05/2020

Division affected: Maidstone Central; Maidstone South; Malling North;

Lead officer: Nick Abrahams

13/05/2020 - 20/00036 - To extend the current contract with Liquidlogic until 2021 ref: 2346    Recommendations Approved

Background Information:


A decision was made in 2011 to replace the existing social care system, and to develop a new ICT Strategy for Children’s Social Services. This went to cabinet on 18/07/2011 where Cabinet resolved to endorse the overall ICS Programme and Strategy as detailed in the Cabinet report so that the programme could continue to deliver against the immediate needs of Children’s Services. Also now having put in place a framework for the sustainable delivery of ongoing changes to the ICT system, practice and policies in use by Children’s Service, Cabinet further resolved that a process should now be commenced for the procurement and implementation of a suitable long-term ICT solution.’


The procurement and contract award then took place and Liquidlogic was awarded the contract in March 2012, with a value of £800,000. Following successful use of the system, the contract has been added to in the last 8 years to include additional workspaces and portals, and modules for Early Help, Troubled Families and the Disabled Children’s Service.


We are already towards the end of the first year of this two-year contract extension as it has taken time to agree the paperwork for the extension with the supplier (Liquidlogic) and ICT Commissioning, and it was only once this paperwork was passed to Strategic Commissioning that it was discovered that the contract extension period now takes us over the £1 million threshold.


It is important that we have ongoing continuity of a social care and early help system for recording and evidencing our support and interventions with children, young people and families. This ensures we can safeguard children, meet our statutory duties, fulfil our statutory return obligations to the DfE, and ensure we can evidence the impact of our work to Ofsted.


The current contract will end in March 2021 and we are already planning for the next contract award.




The Cabinet Member for Integrated Children’s Services is asked to extend the current contract with Liquidlogic until 2021.

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Integrated Children's Services

Decision published: 13/05/2020

Effective from: 21/05/2020

Division affected: (All Division);

Lead officer: Katherine Atkinson

12/05/2020 - 20/00040 - Proposal to make prescribed alterations to Stone Bay (Foundation) Special School from September 2020 ref: 2345    Recommendations Approved

Background Information:


The age-range of Stone Bay (Community Special) School changed from 8-19 years to 5-19 years from September 2019 with the introduction of KS1 classes.  The school, together with KCC, now wish to extend the provision to include a reception class (EYPS) to enable the school to take children from aged 4 in order to meet local need for reception specialist places. 




The Cabinet Member for Education & Skills is asked to:


(i)            Issue a public notice to permanently change the age range of the school and increase the designated number of the school and subject to no objections being received to the public notice; and


(ii)          Change the age range from 5-19 years to 4-19 years in order to provide reception places and to increase the designated number from 80 to 90 to respond to the demand for specialist places.

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Education and Skills

Decision published: 12/05/2020

Effective from: 20/05/2020

Division affected: Broadstairs;

Lead officer: Marisa White

11/05/2020 - 20/00045 - Purchase of Land South of Seal Drive in Sevenoaks ref: 2344    Recommendations Approved

To Purchase the land south of Seal Drive in Sevenoaks for use as a playing field extension
To Delegate authority to the Director of Infrastructure, in consultation with the Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Finance, Corporate and Traded Services and the Cabinet Member for Education and Skills, to approve necessary development works required to develop the land into usable playing fields and to finalise the terms of and enter into relevant contracts or other legal agreements as required to implement this decision.

·   Background

The Wildernesse School site was developed in 2016 for a new 4FE Trinity School and for a 3FE satellite expansion for the Weald of Kent Grammar School for girls.  In 2017, Trinity school expanded to 6FE. It is proposed that a boy’s grammar school will be co-located at the site as well.


The playing field facilities presently at the site are shared use.  While there is sufficient sports provision on site, it requires careful scheduling as the schools need to timetable appropriately to ensure their curriculums are not adversely impacted.  This need for collaborative planning will only be exacerbated if the site were to be used by three separate parties. This would mean that sports areas would be in use nearly all the time during the school year.


A timely opportunity arose where land adjacent to the school was offered for sale by the Royal Society for Blind Children. The land measures about 9.4 acres and would support the provision of a further 2 or 3 pitches. Initial feasibility has determined that the existing gradients on the ground are not excessive and the requirement for levelling appears within acceptable parameters.


The land has a contiguous boundary with the playing fields of Trinity School and the satellite expansion of the Weald of Kent Grammar School.


KCC recently completed a consultation on the establishment of a Boys’ Grammar satellite of the Tunbridge Wells Grammar School for Boys.  Although the provision of 3FE of boy’s selective places is not dependent on the acquisition of this land and the decision as to whether the provision will be approved is yet to be taken, the purchase and use of this land as playing fields for the existing schools on site would also be of benefit to the additional 3FE selective provision if progressed, and will result in all three provisions having access to a much greater offer for outdoor sports.


·   Options

There are no options.  The potential to acquire this land was an unexpected opportunity.


This needs to be considered as urgently as possible.  It is an excellent opportunity to acquire a valuable and useful asset, that will enhance the school sports experience for more than two thousand local school students, as well as the wider local community.  If this acquisition is not progressed at pace, the vendor is likely to seek alternative buyers.



·   How the proposed decision meets the objectives of ‘Increasing Opportunities, Improving Outcomes: Kent County Council’s Strategic Statement (2015-2020)’

School Sports Facilities

The acquisition of this land greatly enhances the outdoor sports provision for both the Trinity School, the Weald of Kent Grammar School satellite and the provider of 3FE of Boys selective provision, should this be agreed.


Depending on the season and the curriculums of the schools, the grassed areas could be marked for hockey, athletics, rugby or football or several smaller training areas. The additional land would also offer opportunities for cross country running around the perimeter, offering a total running distance of more than 1.5km, across a challenging mix of vegetation, gradients and direction changes.


Other Opportunities for Use


Additional Community Use Facilities

There is quite a demand for sports facilities in Sevenoaks and the schools on the site would work together to make certain areas of the site available for hire by the local community, when and where it is appropriate, i.e. when not in use by the schools.  New pitches would result in the existing facilities being not overused.  This adds to the potential for out of hours community use.


Forest Schools

The abundant, established woodland, particularly in the western edge and the central copse, provide excellent opportunity for Forest School teaching.  A Forest School is a specialised learning approach that sits within and complements the wider context of outdoor and woodland education.  It has a holistic, sensory and structured approach and is frequently seen as being of special benefit to children with disabilities and those whose learning is challenged in other ways.   More information can be found at this website:



A feasibility study indicates that the site is a habitat, or potential habitat for many types of flora and fauna.  These would be of tremendous interest to the Forest School and as study material for biology and humanities students. KCC and the schools would seek to preserve these habitats and would consider further action to enhance and create new habitats.


Use by Royal Society for Blind Children Approved Sporting Events

The history of Dorton House and the care and teaching of blind and partially sighted children, is one that KCC would like to perpetuate.  To this end, the schools on the site would be willing, by prior arrangement, to make available such sports or forest school facilities that might be of use to the RSBC, maybe as part of their Health and Well-being Club programme.

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Education and Skills

Decision published: 11/05/2020

Effective from: 19/05/2020

Division affected: Sevenoaks Town;

Lead officer: Ian Watts

04/05/2020 - 20/00048 - COVID19 - Rent Management Policy ref: 2343    Recommendations Approved

Background – COVID19 has had a considerable impact on businesses. Whilst the Government is offering a level of support, many tenants will still be impacted and are looking at options to ease their cashflow commitments during this period. Whilst arrangements may be contractual, KCC needs to consider its position as a responsible landlord and how it might support its tenants during this period.


Decision – To agree a “COVID19 Response to Rental Management Policy”, reflecting the extraordinary conditions Kent County Council tenants are finding themselves in.

Decision Maker: Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Finance, Corporate and Traded Services

Decision published: 04/05/2020

Effective from: 13/05/2020

Division affected: (All Division);

Lead officer: Mark Cheverton