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Children, Schools and Families Bill


Children, Schools and Families Bill
Part 1 — Children and schools

1

 

A

Bill

[AS AMENDED IN PUBLIC BILL COMMITTEE]

To

Make provision about pupil and parent guarantees, home-school agreements,

parental satisfaction surveys, children with disabilities or special educational

needs, school and other education, governing bodies’ powers and school

teachers’ qualifications; to make provision amending the Education Acts; to

make provision about Local Safeguarding Children Boards and youth justice;

and to make provision about publication of information relating to family

proceedings.

Be it enacted by the Queen’s most Excellent Majesty, by and with the advice and

consent of the Lords Spiritual and Temporal, and Commons, in this present

Parliament assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:—

Part 1

Children and schools

Pupil and parent involvement

1       

Pupil and parent guarantees

(1)   

The Secretary of State must issue, and may from time to time revise—

5

(a)   

a document setting out what a pupil at a school to which this section

applies is entitled to expect with regard to the school (the “pupil

guarantee”);

(b)   

a document setting out what a parent of a pupil at such a school is

entitled to expect with regard to the school (the “parent guarantee”).

10

(2)   

The pupil and parent guarantees may impose requirements on—

(a)   

local authorities in England,

(b)   

governing bodies, and proprietors (other than governing bodies), of

schools to which this section applies, and

 

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Children, Schools and Families Bill
Part 1 — Children and schools

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(c)   

head teachers of schools to which this section applies,

   

and may include guidelines setting out aims, objectives and other matters to

which those authorities, bodies, proprietors and teachers must have regard in

carrying out their functions.

(3)   

The pupil guarantee and the parent guarantee must be framed with a view to

5

realising the pupil ambitions and the parent ambitions respectively.

(4)   

The pupil ambitions are—

(a)   

for all pupils to go to schools where there is good behaviour, strong

discipline, order and safety;

(b)   

for all pupils to go to schools where they are taught a broad, balanced

10

and flexible curriculum and where they acquire skills for learning and

life;

(c)   

for all pupils to go to schools where they are taught in ways that meet

their needs, where their progress is regularly checked and where

particular needs are identified early and quickly addressed;

15

(d)   

for all pupils to go to schools where they take part in sporting and

cultural activities;

(e)   

for all pupils to go to schools where their health and well-being are

promoted, where they are able to express their views and where both

they and their families are welcomed and valued.

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(5)   

The parent ambitions are—

(a)   

for all parents to have opportunities to exercise choice with and on

behalf of their children, and to have the information and support they

need to help them do so;

(b)   

for there to be, for all parents, home-school agreements outlining their

25

responsibilities, and those of the school, for their children’s schooling;

(c)   

for all parents to have opportunities to be engaged in their children’s

learning and development, and to have the information and support

they need to help them do so;

(d)   

for all parents to have access to a variety of activities, facilities and

30

services, including support and advice with regard to parenting.

(6)   

In subsection (4) “pupils” means pupils at schools to which this section applies,

and in subsection (5) “parents” means parents of such pupils.

(7)   

The pupil and parent guarantees may make different provision for schools or

pupils of different descriptions.

35

(8)   

The schools to which this section applies are—

(a)   

community, foundation and voluntary schools in England;

(b)   

community and foundation special schools in England;

(c)   

nursery schools that are maintained by a local authority in England and

are not special schools;

40

(d)   

Academies, city technology colleges and city colleges for the

technology of the arts.

   

But in relation to nursery schools, subsection (3) applies only to the extent that

the Secretary of State thinks appropriate.

(9)   

The Secretary of State may by order made by statutory instrument—

45

(a)   

amend subsection (2) so as to add or remove a body or person;

(b)   

amend subsection (8).

 
 

Children, Schools and Families Bill
Part 1 — Children and schools

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(10)   

A statutory instrument containing an order under subsection (9) may not be

made unless a draft of the instrument has been laid before, and approved by a

resolution of, each House of Parliament.

2       

Procedure for issuing and revising pupil and parent guarantees

(1)   

Where the Secretary of State proposes to issue or revise a pupil guarantee or a

5

parent guarantee under section 1, he or she must prepare a draft of the

guarantee or the revisions.

(2)   

The Secretary of State must consult whatever persons he or she thinks

appropriate about the draft and must consider any representations made by

them.

10

(3)   

If the Secretary of State decides to proceed with the draft (either in its original

form or with modifications) he or she must lay a copy of the draft before each

House of Parliament.

(4)   

If the draft is not approved by a resolution of each House, the Secretary of State

must take no further steps in relation to the proposed guarantee or the

15

proposed revisions.

(5)   

If the draft is approved by a resolution of each House—

(a)   

the Secretary of State must issue the guarantee or the revisions in the

form of the draft, and

(b)   

the guarantee comes into force, or the revisions come into force, on

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whatever date the Secretary of State appoints by order.

(6)   

Subsection (4) does not prevent a new draft of a proposed guarantee or

proposed revisions from being laid before Parliament.

(7)   

The requirement in subsection (2) to consult about a draft of a pupil guarantee

or a parent guarantee may be satisfied by consultation undertaken before the

25

commencement of this section or the passing of this Act.

3       

Complaints relating to pupil and parent guarantees

(1)   

In Chapter 2 of Part 10 of ASCLA 2009 (complaints about schools in England),

in section 206 (complaints to which that Chapter applies), after paragraph (a)

of subsection (2) there is inserted—

30

“(aa)   

a failure by the head teacher of the school to comply with any

requirement (including a requirement to have regard to

guidance) imposed on the head teacher by virtue of subsection

(2) of section 1 of the Children, Schools and Families Act 2010

(pupil and parent guarantees); or”.

35

(2)   

In Schedule 5 to the Local Government Act 1974 (matters not subject to

investigation by a Local Commissioner), after sub-paragraph (2) of paragraph

5 there is inserted—

    “(3)  

Sub-paragraph (2) does not include action that is alleged to have or

appears to have resulted in—

40

(a)   

the parent of a pupil at a school to which section 1 of the

Children, Schools and Families Act 2010 applies (pupil and

parent guarantees) being denied anything that the parent is

entitled to expect with regard to the school by virtue of the

parent guarantee issued under that section, or

45

 
 

Children, Schools and Families Bill
Part 1 — Children and schools

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(b)   

a pupil at a school to which that section applies being denied

anything that the pupil is entitled to expect with regard to the

school by virtue of the pupil guarantee issued under that

section.”

(3)   

In section 496 of EA 1996 (power of Secretary of State to prevent unreasonable

5

exercise of functions), after subsection (4) there is inserted—

“(4A)   

The Secretary of State may not give a direction under this section to a

local authority on the basis that there has been a breach of a relevant

guarantee unless—

(a)   

a complaint about the alleged breach has been made and

10

disposed of under Part 3 of the Local Government Act 1974, or

(b)   

the circumstances are such that, in the opinion of the Secretary

of State, it is appropriate to give a direction without such a

complaint having been made and disposed of under that Part.

(4B)   

For the purposes of subsection (4A) there is a breach of a relevant

15

guarantee where—

(a)   

the parent of a pupil at a school to which section 1 of the

Children, Schools and Families Act 2010 applies (pupil and

parent guarantees) is denied anything that the parent is entitled

to expect with regard to the school by virtue of the parent

20

guarantee issued under that section, or

(b)   

a pupil at a school to which that section applies is denied

anything that the pupil is entitled to expect with regard to the

school by virtue of the pupil guarantee issued under that

section.”

25

(4)   

In section 497 of that Act (general default powers of Secretary of State), after

subsection (5) there is inserted—

“(5A)   

The Secretary of State may not make an order under this section

directed to a local authority on the basis that there has been a breach of

a relevant guarantee unless—

30

(a)   

a complaint about the alleged breach has been made and

disposed of under Part 3 of the Local Government Act 1974, or

(b)   

the circumstances are such that, in the opinion of the Secretary

of State, it is appropriate to make an order without such a

complaint having been made and disposed of under that Part.

35

(5B)   

For the purposes of subsection (5A) there is a breach of a relevant

guarantee where—

(a)   

the parent of a pupil at a school to which section 1 of the

Children, Schools and Families Act 2010 applies (pupil and

parent guarantees) is denied anything that the parent is entitled

40

to expect with regard to the school by virtue of the parent

guarantee issued under that section, or

(b)   

a pupil at a school to which that section applies is denied

anything that the pupil is entitled to expect with regard to the

school by virtue of the pupil guarantee issued under that

45

section.”

(5)   

In section 497A of that Act (powers of Secretary of State to secure proper

performance of local authority’s functions), after subsection (4B) there is

 
 

Children, Schools and Families Bill
Part 1 — Children and schools

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inserted—

“(4C)   

The Secretary of State may not give a direction under subsection (4),

(4A) or (4B) on the basis that there has been a breach of a relevant

guarantee unless—

(a)   

a complaint about the alleged breach has been made and

5

disposed of under Part 3 of the Local Government Act 1974, or

(b)   

the circumstances are such that, in the opinion of the Secretary

of State, it is appropriate to make an order without such a

complaint having been made and disposed of under that Part.

(4D)   

For the purposes of subsection (4C) there is a breach of a relevant

10

guarantee where—

(a)   

the parent of a pupil at a school to which section 1 of the

Children, Schools and Families Act 2010 applies (pupil and

parent guarantees) is denied anything that the parent is entitled

to expect with regard to the school by virtue of the parent

15

guarantee issued under that section, or

(b)   

a pupil at a school to which that section applies is denied

anything that the pupil is entitled to expect with regard to the

school by virtue of the pupil guarantee issued under that

section.”

20

4       

Home-school agreements for each pupil

Before section 110 of SSFA 1998 (home-school agreements) there is inserted—

“109A   

  Home-school agreements: England

(1)   

The head teacher of a school in England which is—

(a)   

a maintained school, or

25

(b)   

a city technology college, a city college for the technology of the

arts or an Academy,

   

shall, in respect of each registered pupil at the school who is of

compulsory school age (“the pupil”), provide each registered parent of

the pupil (“the parent”) with a home-school agreement and a parental

30

declaration.

(2)   

Subsection (1) has effect subject to subsection (6).

(3)   

Where the head teacher considers it appropriate to do so, the head

teacher may provide different parents of the same pupil with different

home-school agreements.

35

(4)   

For the purposes of this section and section 111 a “home-school

agreement” is a statement specifying—

(a)   

the school’s aims and values;

(b)   

the school’s responsibilities, namely the responsibilities which

the school intends to discharge in connection with the conduct,

40

education and well-being of the pupil while of compulsory

school age;

(c)   

the parental responsibilities, namely the responsibilities which

the parent is expected to discharge in connection with the

conduct, education and well-being of the pupil while a

45

registered pupil at the school; and

 
 

Children, Schools and Families Bill
Part 1 — Children and schools

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(d)   

the school’s expectations of the pupil, namely the expectations

of the school as regards the conduct, education and well-being

of the pupil while a registered pupil there;

   

and “parental declaration” means a declaration to be used by the parent

for recording that the parent takes note of the school’s aims and values

5

and its responsibilities and that the parent acknowledges and accepts

the parental responsibilities and the school’s expectations of the pupil.

(5)   

Subject to subsection (6), the head teacher shall take reasonable steps to

secure that the parental declaration is signed by the parent.

(6)   

The head teacher is not required by subsection (1) to provide a parent

10

with a home-school agreement and parental declaration, or by

subsection (5) to seek the signature of a parent, where the head teacher

considers that it would be inappropriate to do so having regard to any

special circumstances relating to the parent or the pupil in question.

(7)   

Where the head teacher considers that the pupil has a sufficient

15

understanding of a home-school agreement as it relates to the pupil, the

head teacher may invite the pupil to sign the parental declaration as an

indication that the pupil acknowledges and accepts the school’s

expectations of the pupil.

(8)   

The head teacher—

20

(a)   

may review a home-school agreement from time to time, and

shall review each home-school agreement at least once in every

school year after the one in which it was first provided;

(b)   

may revise an agreement following a review.

(9)   

Consultation with the parent must form part of any review under

25

subsection (8).

(10)   

Subsections (1) and (5) to (7) shall apply each time a review under

subsection (8) has been completed (with any reference to a home-school

agreement being read, where appropriate, as a reference to the

agreement as revised following the review).

30

(11)   

A home-school agreement lapses when the pupil to whom it relates—

(a)   

ceases to be a registered pupil at the school in question, or

(b)   

ceases to be of compulsory school age.”

5       

Home-school agreements: parenting contracts and parenting orders

(1)   

Part 3 of the Anti-social Behaviour Act 2003 (parental responsibilities) is

35

amended as follows.

(2)   

In section 19 (parenting contracts in cases of misbehaviour at school or

truancy), after subsection (6) there is inserted—

“(6A)   

In the case of a parenting contract entered into with a parent who has

been provided with a home-school agreement (which has not lapsed)

40

under section 109A of the School Standards and Framework Act 1998,

the document setting out the contract must also contain—

(a)   

a statement by the parent that the parent agrees to discharge the

responsibilities that the parent is expected to discharge under

the terms of the home-school agreement, and

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Children, Schools and Families Bill
Part 1 — Children and schools

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(b)   

a statement by the local authority or governing body that it

agrees to provide support to the parent for the purpose of

discharging those responsibilities.”

(3)   

In section 21 (parenting orders: supplemental), after subsection (1A) there is

inserted—

5

“(1B)   

In deciding whether to make a parenting order under section 20 in the

case of a parent who has been provided with a home-school agreement

(which has not lapsed) in respect of the pupil under section 109A of the

School Standards and Framework Act 1998, a court must also take into

account any failure by the parent to discharge the responsibilities that

10

the parent is expected to discharge under the terms of the agreement.”

6       

Parental satisfaction surveys

(1)   

In Chapter 3 of Part 1 of EA 1996 (local authorities), after section 19I (inserted

by Schedule 1 to this Act) there is inserted—

“Parental satisfaction surveys

15

19J     

Duty to carry out parental satisfaction surveys

(1)   

Each calendar year, a local authority in England shall carry out a survey

of the views of each prescribed description of parents in their area

about the provision of relevant schools in their area.

This is subject to any provision under subsection (7) and to any

20

exemption applying to the authority by virtue of subsection (8).

(2)   

“Relevant schools”, in subsection (1), means schools providing

education of such description as may be prescribed.

(3)   

Regulations may make provision about arrangements to be made by an

authority for the purposes of this section.

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(4)   

The regulations may, in particular—

(a)   

specify matters relating to the provision of schools in respect of

which parents’ views are to be sought;

(b)   

make provision for supplementary information to be requested

from parents;

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(c)   

specify the manner and form in which parents’ views are to be

sought, or in which supplementary information is to be

requested.

(5)   

In sections 19K to 19N a “parental satisfaction survey” means a survey

carried out under this section.

35

(6)   

A description of parent may be prescribed, for the purposes of this

section and sections 19K and 19L, by reference to—

(a)   

children of a specified age;

(b)   

children in a specified age group.

(7)   

Regulations may provide that, where prescribed circumstances apply

40

in relation to an authority, they are exempt from the requirement

imposed by subsection (1).

   

The regulations may, in particular, make provision about the extent to

which and the period during which any exemption is to apply.

 
 

 
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