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Agenda item

York Learning Annual Report

This report presents the end of academic year performance report and data for York Learning.  The report forms part of the service’s reporting arrangements, which are critically important for the service in demonstrating to Ofsted that it has robust governance arrangements in place.  Feedback on the report from this committee will help to shape the service’s Strategic Plan for the academic year 2021/22 which will be considered by the Executive Member for Culture, Leisure and Communities in September.



Members considered a report that presented the end of the academic year performance and data for York Learning.


The Head of York Learning, the Chair of the York Learning Improvement Board and the Executive Member for Culture, Leisure and Communities were in attendance to present the report and answer any questions raised.


The Head highlighted the key points in her report and Members were informed that:

·        In July 2019, to strengthen the scrutiny arrangements, a Stakeholder Governance Board was established, subsequently named the York Learning Improvement Board.

·        The Improvement Board first met in October 2020, they meet four to five times a year and the members (York Learning Governors) of the Board were drawn from a variety of backgrounds.

·        The service had performed well against the measures set out in the strategic plan for 20/21 and the service’s performance in supporting 16 to18 year old learners and special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) students was a challenging financial model.

·        Whilst the strong online curriculum enabled engagement from all types of learners, including the most disadvantaged, going fully online had made new engagement opportunities with the most disengaged incredibly difficult, leading to lower recruitment levels mainly within entry and lower level skills.

·        Employers had not struggled to fill vacancies over the last year and due to the Covid restrictions a jobs fair did not take place. To support residents, officers had co-ordinated the Community Learning Partnership to provide a ‘Learning in York’ week to support those unemployed to develop their employability skills.

·        Apprenticeship programmes were no longer in minimum standards.


During discussion of the item and in answer to Members questions, it was noted that:


·        The input and challenge over the last year from the York Learning Improvement Board had been incredibly helpful, which had resulted in adapting the strategic plan and the self-assessment report.

·        The number of refugee learners had lowered slightly but families continued to progress their English skills and the family learning programme courses would continue.

·        York Learning worked with a range of learners and offered various courses and apprenticeship programmes. They also offered a high needs special educational programme for 16 to 24 year olds, various essential skills (English, Maths, IT) courses for the 19+ age group, including wider adults and community learning programmes.

·         A blended model would be offered moving forward and officers were hoping to hold a jobs fair later this year.

·        Officers worked robustly with and moderated the different subcontracting organisations.

·        Partners across the city were working together to consider the future need models across the curriculum.

·        The impact of Covid had brought the need for the service to have its own venue into ever sharper relief and officers continued to consider potential options. Members were invited to visit the learning environment at the roots programme base.


Members were impressed by the wide range of services on offer including the NSPCC Look, Say, Sing, Play initiative, support for those in NEETs, the Early Talk for York offer, the refugee resettlement offer and the accommodation asylum seeker programme, and the Head of York Learning and her staff were commended for their work.


Resolved:  That the performance of York Learning be noted and that an update on digital inclusion and post Covid recovery be included in the next annual report.


Reason: To help monitor the service and guide managers and ensure robust and accountable governance arrangements.



Supporting documents:


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