Aquinas college general purposes committee



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AQUINAS COLLEGE

GENERAL PURPOSES COMMITTEE
Date: 11 October 2016

Time: 4.30pm

Venue: The College

GOVERNORS PRESENT
Dr P Beatty, Mr L Byrne, Mr B Hickey, Mr J Horan, Mrs R Phillipson and Dr A Smith.
Mr J Horan in the Chair
IN ATTENDANCE
Mr D Pearson Principal

Ms C Vitti Vice Principal
1. APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE
Apologies for absence were received and accepted from Ms C Calverley and Mr B Hickey for his late arrival.
2. DECLARATION OF INTERESTS
Governors and Staff were asked to declare any interest, which they may have in any of the items on the Agenda for this meeting. No interests were declared.
3. MINUTES OF THE PREVIOUS MEETING
The Minutes of the meeting held on 4 July 2016 were agreed as a correct record.
4. MATTERS ARISING FROM THE MINUTES
There were no matters arising that were not covered by the agenda.



5. ADMISSIONS 2016/2017
Mr Pearson reminded Governors that the target number for admissions was between 1100 and 1150. At the start of the term the actual number of students on roll in L6 was 1227. A discussion took place on the conversion rates for the number of students that had applied for a place at the college. Mr Pearson reported that 862 students had applied by the deadline from categories 1–4 with a conversion rate of 65.9% that would give 568 students. The actual conversion rate was 63% which gave 542 students. 1200 students from catergory 5 had applied for a place at the college this number was reduced to 1000 students who were interviewed. In previous years the conversion rate has been between 54-62%. 928 offers were made based on a conversion rate of 58%. The actual conversion rate was 61% which gave 566 students. The actual number of new students in L6 was, therefore, 1108. There were 73 recyclers students, in addition to some late offers to category 1-4 students and transfers giving a total of 1227 in L6. In the U6 there are 1003 students giving a total of 2230 which is 133 higher than the funding figure for this financial year. Assuming that some students may leave before the census date the figure may reduce to 120 higher. This will mean that the college will receive close to an additional £500,000 in next year’s funding due to the lagged process of working this out. All of this is at a time when there is a demographic downturn and serious competition from other colleges and schools with sixth forms.
Mr Pearson advised Governors that the college had to fund the additional staff that were needed due to the increase in student numbers. The college had planned for this and had enough staff to cope. Some curriculum areas were slightly higher but overall the class sizes were less due to reduced workloads (expectation that students study 3 rather than 4 subjects). There are 40 LVI tutor groups with an average of 30/31 students in each group. The biggest class sizes are 26/27 whilst in U6 the biggest class sizes are 24/25.
Mr Horan asked in which subjects were there large class sizes. Mr Pearson replied that the subject areas were psychology, accounting, sociology and the BTEC subjects. . Dr Beatty advised Governors that the Teaching and Learning Committee had looked at the issue of class sizes. Mr Pearson advised Governors that the science subjects were now linear and that the college had used the projected GCSE results when planning classes to help determine which course the students could follow at A level. As a result some students are taking Applied Sciences. The college had planned to deliver 10% more chemistry, biology and physics than was actually needed.
Mr Pearson advised Governors that the additional resources for 2017/2018 generated by the additional students may be used to purchase new IT equipment. The IT equipment was all new in 2010 when the new build was completed and is now in need of replacement. Mr Pearson added that he had raised the concerns about IT equipment becoming outdated at national level.
Mr Byrne asked what the actual number of students that the college could have on site based on the planning permission for the new building. Mr Pearson replied that the actual number of students that can be on site at any one time is 1900. Mr Horan asked if the amount of time a student would be on the college site had reduced as a result of students taking 3 A levels instead of 4 Alevels. Mr Pearson confirmed that this was the case.
Mr Hickey arrived whilst this item was being discussed.
6. ADMISSIONS 2017/2018
Open Events had been held on Wednesday 5 October 2016 and had been very busy, whilst the one on Saturday 8 October 2016 had been less busy, another Open Evening had been arranged for Thursday 3 November 2016. The closing date for applications (which are online) for 2017/2018 is 30 November 2016. Applications from category 2 students who have submitted their application forms by 30 November 2016 will then be considered taking into account their school reference. Applicants who are to receive further consideration will receive a letter by 20 December 2016 inviting them to attend an interview in January/February 2017.
Mrs Phillipson informed Governors that she had attended one of the Open Events with her son and had been impressed with the organisation, the image presented by the college and the information that was available.
Mr Pearson advised Governors that the current L6 was the largest that the college has ever had. This will mean that the number of students that can be admitted to the L6 in September 2017 will be nearer to 1000. There is a small demographic increase next year. The college would like to maintain a creeping growth in student numbers. Further information on the number of applications would be available at the Governing Body meeting on 22 November 2016 and a further report would be given to the next General Purposes Committee.



7. COMMITTEE TERMS OF REFERENCE
A copy of the current General Purposes Committee Terms of Reference had been circulated to all members prior to the meeting. After a full discussion it was agreed that no changes were necessary.
8. PUBLICITY
Mr Pearson circulated a pack of information that had been distributed at the Open Events and on visits to schools. The pack contained the prospectus for 2017 “Aspire to be more” and the Enrichment Programme. Particular reference was made to the feedback postcard. All the information had been designed by the college now that it had its own graphic designer but had been printed externally. Example of the subject information used at the Open Events were circulated to Governors for information.
For the benefit of Governors Mr Pearson demonstrated how the redesigned college website worked and encouraged Governors to have a look at it. An in-house group had looked at what needed to be included on the website and then the college went out to tender. The MIS team will maintain the website and keep it up to date. Mr Pearson advised Governors that the old website was looking tired and needed updating. He added that the website needed to be able to be viewed on a mobile phone. Dr Smith asked who had taken the photographs that had been used in the prospectus. Mr Pearson replied that staff from the college had taken the photographs. Mrs Phillipson advised Governors that if a library book is not taken back on time a student is blocked from accessing My Aquinas. Dr Smith asked how the network would deal with any radicalisation issues. Mr Pearson advised Governors that use of certain words would trigger an investigation. Mr Byrne suggested that the layout showing the different categories for admission needed to be amended to make it clear that category 1 is sub dived into 4.
Mr Pearson advised Governors that a new in-house magazine called AQ published by students would be available later this term. A team of staff would work with the students to produce the magazine.
9. ANY OTHER BUSINESS
There was no any other business.



10. DATE OF NEXT MEETING
31 January 2017 at 4.30pm


Signed ___________________ Date __________________

Chairperson

AQUINAS COLLEGE

EMPLOYMENT COMMITTEE
Date: 11 October 2016

Time: 4.30pm

Venue: The College

GOVERNORS PRESENT
Dr P Beatty, Mr L Byrne, Mr B Hickey, Mr J Horan, Mrs R Phillipson and Dr A Smith.
Mr J Horan in the Chair
IN ATTENDANCE
Mr D Pearson Principal

Ms C Vitti Vice Principal
1. APOLOGIES FOR ABSENCE
An apology for absence was received and accepted from Ms C Calverley
2. DECLARATION OF INTERESTS
Governors and Staff were asked to declare any interest, which they may have in any of the items on the Agenda for this meeting. No interests were declared.
3. MINUTES OF THE PREVIOUS MEETING
The Minutes of the meeting held on 4 July 2016 were agreed as a correct record.
4. MATTERS ARISING FROM THE MINUTES
a) Staff on Long Term Sickness – Minute 5c

Mr Pearson advised Governors that this had been resolved and no one was now on long term sickness.
b) Staffing Structure – Minute 5d

Mr Pearson advised Governors that the staffing structure would be available for the Governing Body meeting on 22 November 2016.
c) Joint Consultative Committee – Minute 6

Mr Pearson advised Governors that all unions/associations were represented on the Joint Consultative Committee. In addition staff who were not a member of a union/association were also represented. The Joint Consultative Committee had not yet met this term and Mr Pearson undertook to report back to the next committee meeting. All policy affecting staff are submitted to the Joint Consultative Committee for their observation/comments.


5. NEW NATIONAL PAY SCALE FOR TEACHERS
Mr Pearson advised Governors that a new national pay scale for teachers had been negotiated that was linked to a member of staff's appraisal. The new pay scale and the transition on to it had been explained to all teaching staff.
After a full discussion it was:
RESOLVED: That the new national pay scale for teachers be adopted by the college.
6. COMMITTEE TERMS OF REFERENCE
A copy of the current Employment Committee Terms of Reference had been circulated to all members prior to the meeting. After a full discussion it was agreed that no changes were necessary.
7. DATE OF NEXT MEETING
31 January 2017 at 4.30pm


Signed ___________________ Date_____________________

Chairperson


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