Agenda Item No.












The report highlighted that overall the Education Budget was projected to balance at the end of March 2013, however this would be after transferring £190k. from Education Reserves.  It was noted that any savings identified before and at the year end would be available to reduce the use of reserves or to re-direct into the School Investment Strategy or other reserves.


The revised budgets reflected a transfer from Access and Inclusion to Schools to reflect the devolved LSA scheme in Secondary Schools to Schools of £555k, £30k had been transferred from Schools to the Access and Inclusion team to fund pupils transferring to the Pupil Referral Unit (PRU) or other alternative provision. In addition £161k had been transferred to the School Improvement Service from the Transition Budget in Strategic Planning and Performance to reflect the additional funding required in 2012/13.  The Operational Manager for Finance and Systems then referred to the budgets under the following service headings:


Schools - The delegated budget relating to schools was expected to balance as any under/over spend was carried forward by schools.


School Improvement - There was a projected overspend of £3k which was made up of an overspend of  £42k due to an amended approach to funding the WJEC subscription which had been originally proposed as a saving and also £11k additional costs for subscriptions and licences paid on behalf of schools.  This was offset by a reduction in the projected cost of the Joint Education Service of £10k,additional income generated in the year and vacancy savings made within the service of £40k.


Access and Inclusion – The Additional Learning Needs (ALN) service was projecting an overspend of £242k which was due to an overspend against the budget for children’s placements in independent schools of £270k, and had been partly offset by additional recoupment income of £63k.  ALN was also projecting an overspend of £252k against the one to one LSA budget which had been offset in year by £239k found as a result of de-committing other Pupil Support expenditure and as a result of savings identified as part of the proposed ALN Restructure, £22k additional income to be generated in year and a £36k contribution made from the Transition budget.  There was also an overspend in ALN of £80k due to refurbishment and teaching materials for the Pupil Referral Unit (PRU) prior to inspection and lower than projected Age Weighted Pupil Unit contributions from schools towards pupils placed in the PRU. This would however, be funded by a contribution from the Excluded Pupils Reserve. It was highlighted that ALN was an extremely volatile budget and various options for offsetting any potential overspend were being investigated.


Strategy and Performance - Strategic Planning was projecting an underspend of £55k with £53k being due to the vacant Director post. There were also savings against the pensions budgets of £25k, £6k against Directorate office supplies and advertising budgets and £66k underspend in ICT and Data due to in year vacancy savings, additional income generated and new arrangements for during school test.  This was offset by a projected overspend of £15k for Schools Rates and a projected overspend against maternity costs met on behalf of the schools of £80k.  It was stated that the outturn for maternity was difficult to project accurately and was overspent by £195k in 2011/12, it would need to be monitored carefully.  From 2013/14 the maternity budget would be devolved to schools and a scheme similar to the one currently in operation for long term sickness would be put in place.


Provision had been made within the budget for the annual cost of financing the School Investment Strategy of £600,000. This sum would be transferred to the School Investment Strategy Reserve.


In addition the School’s contributions to the Early Retirement/ Voluntary Redundancy scheme Education was projecting to transfer £66,000 from Education Reserves which would be repaid by participating schools over 2013/14 and 2014/15. With regard to Libraries there was currently a £40k favourable variance against the profiled budget but the Service was anticipated to outturn within budget. For Catering there was currently a £8k favourable variance against the profiled budget but the Service was anticipated to outturn within budget; however this could be affected by external factors and the requirement to meet WG nutritional standards.


Appendix 2 to the report detailed the financial progress on the Capital Programme as at 30th November 2012.  Noted in the report was the fact that for all schemes where it was evident that the full year’s budget would not be spent during the year, the relevant officers were required to provide an explanation of the shortfall.  In this regard reference was made to the Penarth Learning Community / St. Cyres Demountables. There were currently two separate budgets covering these projects but it was proposed that they be combined as one. The £97k was approved to enable pupils to be transferred in order to proceed with construction works. Additional works, at an estimated cost of £63k, relating to this element of the project included alterations to the swimming pool to convert into a hall. It was proposed that funding for these additional costs come from a revenue contribution. It was therefore proposed that the St. Cyres demountable budget of £97k be transferred into the Penarth Learning Community budget, along with an additional £63k funding from revenue (£3k of which would not be required until 2015/16 as it related to a retention payment release), increasing the original Penarth Learning Community budget to £4.923m in 2013/14 and £4.683m in 2015/16.


Appendix 3 to the report provided non financial information on capital construction schemes with a budget of over £100k. 




(1)       T H A T the position with regard to the 2012/13 Revenue and Capital Monitoring be noted.


(2)       T H A T an amendment to the Penarth Learning Community Capital Scheme to increase the 2013/14 budget to £4.923 million (funded from a transfer of £97,000 from the St. Cyres Demountable Budget plus an additional £60,000 revenue funding) and to also increase the 2015/16 budget by £3,000 (funded from revenue contributions) be endorsed and referred to Cabinet and Council for approval.


Reasons for recommendations


(1)       To apprise Members with regard to the position to the 2012/13 revenue and capital monitoring.


(2)       To refer the proposed amendment to the capital programme to Cabinet and Council for approval.”






Attached as Appendix - Report to Scrutiny Committee (Lifelong Learning): 21st January, 2013