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Planning the sufficiency of children's services provision

In January 2014 legislation came into force which altered the way changes to schools are proposed and consulted on. More information on the new legislation can be found using the links section on this page.

As a result of these changes a new system has been put in place locally which seeks to make best use of the more streamlined nature of the legislation. A diagram of the new system can be viewed in the ‘related documents’ section of this page.

The process is now two main stages:

• An outcomes based accountability (OBA) session

• On line forum and consultation

From these two stages a preferred option should be identified which can then be developed into a formal proposal for consideration by the Executive Board – the council’s decision making body – who would then decide whether or not to publish a statutory notice on the proposal.

An OBA session involves key stakeholders from an area, such as head teachers, heads of school governors, elected members and representatives from parish councils or neighbourhood forums and residents groups. These key stakeholders, along with council officers from planning, highways, capacity planning and school improvement teams consider the issues and then discuss possible solutions. From this meeting several possible solutions would be identified and these would then be presented in a more detailed format in stage two – the online forum and consultation.

The online forum will be in two parts – initially it would run for two weeks and give stakeholders and the wider public the opportunity to discuss the initial options in more depth. This would also allow the capacity planning team to identify any issues with a particular option which may discount it from further development.

A secondary stage will then continue for a further four weeks and provide a space where development of a specific concept can occur and suggestions from stakeholders can be considered and incorporated into achieving a preferred option. This would then be worked up into a formal proposal for consideration by exec board. It would be within this section of the process that meetings with schools, governing bodies and drop in sessions for the public will occur.

If you are interested in receiving updates on specific proposals or on school place capacity planning issues in general please use the ‘contact us’ box on this page to register. Or if you have any feedback on the new process for consultation you can email us at educ.school.organisation@leeds.gov.uk