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Dorset Schools Forum

Information about the Dorset Schools' Forum.

The Dorset Schools' Forum is an advisory group of head teachers, school governors and non school members, with specific decision making powers who meet with the local authority (LA) to consider financial matters relating to schools and wider education.

It acts as the conduit for colleagues in schools, early years' settings and providers of 16-19 education, for information relating to Schools' Budget funding. It also provides the principal feedback channel on funding issues, enabling the views of schools and providers to be formally communicated to LA officers and county councillors.

As it is required to take a strategic view in all its dealings, the Schools' Forum is unable to 'champion' individual causes. However, it is always useful for members to be appraised of any issues.

Whilst schools' forums are independent of local authorities, they are supported by them. The LA calls and records meetings, disseminates the outcomes of discussions and is responsible for training members and managing their expenses. The Children's Services Directorate Sufficiency and Funding Manager leads in making proposals to the Schools' Forum, ensures that county councillors are kept up to date on Schools' Budget issues and takes responsibility for the work of the paid LA officers who support the group.

It is a statutory requirement for all local authorities to have a schools' forum constituted under the Schools' Forum (England) Regulations 2012 (pdf, 438kb) (opens in a new window), as amended by the Schools and Early Years Finance (England) Regulations 2014 (pdf, 251kb) (opens in a new window). These statutory instruments regulate its power and responsibilities (pdf, 954kb) (opens in a new window), whilst the Education Funding Agency guide for schools and academies (pdf, 383kb) (opens in a new window) explains the role of local schools' forums and how to ensure the voice of the school is heard. The guidelines under which the Dorset Schools' Forum operates can be found in its terms of reference (pdf, 20kb) (opens in a new window).

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