2021-2022 P1 Deferral Rates & Related Questions - Dundee

Roedd y cais yn rhannol lwyddiannus.

Patricia Anderson

Dear Dundee City Council,

Please accept this email as a Freedom of Information request. I am sending this request to all 32 Scottish local authorities.

Please could the Council provide:

1) The total number of requests received to date for the Council to provide discretionary funding for a further year of early learning and childcare (nursery/ childminder etc) for children whose fifth birthdays have will fall between the day after the school start date in August 2021 and 31st Dec 2021.

2) A breakdown of the total number in 1. above by requests for

a) continued funding in private/voluntary settings and

b) continued funding in council run settings and

c) continued funding for split placements where a child attends both a private/voluntary and a council run setting.

3) In relation to question 2, please provide the number of places the Council has agreed to provide continued funding for in

a) private/voluntary settings and

b) council run settings and

c) split placements where a child attends both a private/voluntary and a council run setting.

4. How many of the children applying have a December birthday?

5a. How many appeals (challenges if there is no official appeals process) did the Council receive against the Council’s decision not to grant funding?

5b. How many of these appeals/challenges resulted in the initial decision being overturned?

6. How many official complaints has the Council received regarding discretionary deferral funding decisions between Nov 2020 and the date of your response to this FoI request?

7a. How many applications did the Council receive for children to be permitted early entry to primary school to start in Aug 2021 instead of Aug 2022 (for children who will turn five on or after 1st March 2022)?

7b. How many of these early entry applications were approved?

8. Is the Council’s discretionary deferral funding policy currently under review or are there any plans to update it for 2022-2023?

9. How many parents/carers are currently financing a further year of nursery for their child's deferral year themselves in a council-run nursery after the Council refused to fund their request for this?

10a. How many requests did the Council receive for older children* to defer their primary one start till Aug2022?

*(by "older children" I mean those who had already reached the age of five by the school commencement date in August 2021).

10b. How many older children* has the Council permitted to defer their primary one start till Aug 2022?

*(by "older children" I mean those who had already reached the age of five by the school commencement date in August 2021).

11. Has the Council requested to be part of the 2022-2023 expansion of the Scottish Government's pilot scheme to fund a further year of ELC for all mid-Aug to 31 Dec born children deferring their p1 start before the law is rolled out nationally from Aug 2023?

12a. Please provide SIMD deciles for all applications received as per the total number provided in your response to question 1.

12b. Please provide SIMD deciles for all applications granted as per the total number provided in your response to question 3.

12c. Does the Council take the SIMD decile of applicants into consideration when deciding whether to authorise a discretionary deferral ELC funding application?

Yours faithfully,

Patricia Anderson

DCC FOISA System, Dundee City Council

Dear Sir/Madam,

Thank you for your recent Freedom of Information request.

I acknowledge receipt and your request which has now been registered under
the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002.

Please quote Reference 20210827001 in any correspondence.

Best Regards.

Freedom of Information Liaison
Dundee City Council
21 City Square
Dundee DD1 3BY
Email: [1][Dundee City Council request email]

[2]www.dundeecity.gov.uk/foisa

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DCC FOISA System, Dundee City Council

2 Atodiad

Dear Sir/Madam,

Thankyou for your information request reference: 20210827001
Please find response Document(s) attached to this email.

Relevant contact details are provided in the response document(s).
Best Regards.

Freedom of Information Liaison
Dundee City Council
21 City Square
Dundee DD1 3BY
Email: [1][Dundee City Council request email]

[2]www.dundeecity.gov.uk/foisa

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Patricia Anderson

Dear Dundee City Council,

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information reviews.

I am writing to request an internal review of Dundee City Council's handling of my FOI request '2021-2022 P1 Deferral Rates & Related Questions - Dundee'. Please could you reconsider your decision not to provide numbers fewer than 5 for some answers. You have provided one number smaller than this in your response already so this position is inconsistent. Also, I have received responses from various other councils this year, and in the previous two years I have sent these FoI requests, which contain numbers smaller than 5. Furthermore, the Information Commissioner's Office has upheld my requests to review some councils' decisions to withhold this information in the past. I would therefore be very grateful if you could provide this data.

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is available on the Internet at this address: https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/2...

Yours faithfully,

Patricia Anderson

foi, Dundee City Council

Dear Ms Anderson
I acknowledge receipt of your email and shall respond as soon as possible.
regards
Freedom of Information Liaison
Dundee City Council

--------------------------------------------------------------------------

From: Patricia Anderson <[FOI #785700 email]>
Sent: 08 September 2021 17:17
To: foi <[Dundee City Council request email]>
Subject: Internal review of Freedom of Information request - 2021-2022 P1
Deferral Rates & Related Questions - Dundee
 
Dear Dundee City Council,

Please pass this on to the person who conducts Freedom of Information
reviews.

I am writing to request an internal review of Dundee City Council's
handling of my FOI request '2021-2022 P1 Deferral Rates & Related
Questions - Dundee'. Please could you reconsider your decision not to
provide numbers fewer than 5 for some answers. You have provided one
number smaller than this in your response already so this position is
inconsistent. Also, I have received responses from various other councils
this year, and in the previous two years I have sent these FoI requests,
which contain numbers smaller than 5. Furthermore, the Information
Commissioner's Office has upheld my requests to review some councils'
decisions to withhold this information in the past. I would therefore be
very grateful if you could provide this data.

A full history of my FOI request and all correspondence is available on
the Internet at this address:
[1]https://www.whatdotheyknow.com/request/2...

Yours faithfully,

Patricia Anderson

-------------------------------------------------------------------
Please use this email address for all replies to this request:
[FOI #785700 email]

Disclaimer: This message and any reply that you make will be published on
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For more detailed guidance on safely disclosing information, read the
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Gregory Colgan, Dundee City Council

1 Atodiad

Dear Madam

 

I refer to your e-mail dated 8 September 2021, requesting a review of the
response issued by Dundee City Council in relation to your above Freedom
of Information request.

 

Your Original Request

 

On 27 August 2021, you made a request for the following information: -

 

1) The total number of requests received to date for the Council to
provide discretionary funding for a further year of early learning and
childcare (nursery/ childminder etc) for children whose fifth birthdays
have will fall between the day after the school start date in August 2021
and 31 December 2021.

 

2) A breakdown of the total number in 1 above by requests for

 

a) continued funding in private/voluntary settings and

 

b) continued funding in council run settings and

 

c) continued funding for split placements where a child attends both a
private/voluntary and a council run setting.

 

3) In relation to question 2, please provide the number of places the
Council has agreed to provide continued funding for in

 

a) private/voluntary settings and

 

b) council run settings and

 

c) split placements where a child attends both a private/voluntary and a
council run setting.

 

4. How many of the children applying have a December birthday?

 

5a. How many appeals (challenges if there is no official appeals process)
did the Council receive against the Council’s decision not to grant
funding?

 

5b. How many of these appeals/challenges resulted in the initial decision
being overturned?

 

6. How many official complaints has the Council received regarding
discretionary deferral funding decisions between Nov 2020 and the date of
your response to this FoI request?

 

7a. How many applications did the Council receive for children to be
permitted early entry to primary school to start in Aug 2021 instead of
Aug 2022 (for children who will turn five on or after 1 March 2022)?

 

7b. How many of these early entry applications were approved?

 

8. Is the Council’s discretionary deferral funding policy currently under
review or are there any plans to update it for 2022-2023?

 

9. How many parents/carers are currently financing a further year of
nursery for their child's deferral year themselves in a council-run
nursery after the Council refused to fund their request for this?

 

10a. How many requests did the Council receive for older children* to
defer their primary one start till Aug 2022?

 

*(by "older children" I mean those who had already reached the age of five
by the school commencement date in August 2021).

 

10b. How many older children* has the Council permitted to defer their
primary one start till August 2022?

 

*(by "older children" I mean those who had already reached the age of five
by the school commencement date in August 2021).

 

11. Has the Council requested to be part of the 2022-2023 expansion of the
Scottish Government's pilot scheme to fund a further year of ELC for all
mid-August to 31 December born children deferring their p1 start before
the law is rolled out nationally from August 2023?

 

12a. Please provide SIMD deciles for all applications received as per the
total number provided in your response to question 1.

 

12b. Please provide SIMD deciles for all applications granted as per the
total number provided in your response to question 3.

 

12c. Does the Council take the SIMD decile of applicants into
consideration when deciding whether to authorise a discretionary deferral
ELC funding application?

 

 

 

 

The Council’s Response

 

On 8 September 2021, the Council responded by providing you with the
information sought. However, where there were less than five such cases
the Council did not provide any further details as this might lead to the
relevant individuals being identified. Therefore, these parts of the
request were refused in terms of Section 38(1)(b) and (2)(A) of the
Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002.

 

The response is as follows: -

1) The total number of requests received to date for the Council to
provide discretionary funding for a further year of early learning and
childcare (nursery/ childminder etc) for children whose fifth birthdays
have will fall between the day after the school start date in August 2021
and 31 December 2021. 52

 

2) A breakdown of the total number in 1 above by requests for
a) continued funding in private/voluntary settings 4
b) continued funding in council run settings 48
c) continued funding for split placements where a child attends both a
private/voluntary and a council run setting. 0

3) In relation to question 2, please provide the number of places the
Council has agreed to provide continued funding for in
a) private/voluntary settings 4
b) council run settings 48
c) split placements where a child attends both a private/voluntary and a
council run setting. 0

4. How many of the children applying have a December birthday? 24

5a. How many appeals (challenges if there is no official appeals process)
did the Council receive against the Council’s decision not to grant
funding? 0                                                5b. How many of
these appeals/challenges resulted in the initial decision being
overturned? 0
               
6. How many official complaints has the Council received regarding
discretionary deferral funding decisions between November 2020 and the
date of your response to this FoI request? 0

7a. How many applications did the Council receive for children to be
permitted early entry to primary school to start in August 2021 instead of
August 2022 (for children who will turn five on or after 1 March 2022)?
Less than 5
7b. How many of these early entry applications were approved? 0

8. Is the Council’s discretionary deferral funding policy currently under
review or are there any plans to update it for 2022-2023? No

9. How many parents/carers are currently financing a further year of
nursery for their child's deferral year themselves in a council-run
nursery after the Council refused to fund their request for this? 0

10a. How many requests did the Council receive for older children* to
defer their primary one start till Augist 2022? 0
*(by "older children" I mean those who had already reached the age of five
by the school commencement date in August 2021).
10b. How many older children* has the Council permitted to defer their
primary one start till August 2022? 0
*(by "older children" I mean those who had already reached the age of five
by the school commencement date in August 2021).

11. Has the Council requested to be part of the 2022-2023 expansion of the
Scottish Government's pilot scheme to fund a further year of ELC for all
mid-Aug to 31 December born children deferring their p1 start before the
law is rolled out nationally from August 2023? No

12a. Please provide SIMD deciles for all applications received as per the
total number provided in your response to question 1.

+------------------------------------------------------------------------+
|SIMD Decile |Number of applications |
|------------------------------+-----------------------------------------|
|1 |15 |
|------------------------------+-----------------------------------------|
|2 |11 |
|------------------------------+-----------------------------------------|
|3 |6 |
|------------------------------+-----------------------------------------|
|4 |Less than 5 |
|------------------------------+-----------------------------------------|
|5 |Less than 5 |
|------------------------------+-----------------------------------------|
|6 |Less than 5 |
|------------------------------+-----------------------------------------|
|7 |Less than 5 |
|------------------------------+-----------------------------------------|
|8 |Less than 5 |
|------------------------------+-----------------------------------------|
|9 |8 |
|------------------------------+-----------------------------------------|
|10 |Less than 5 |
|------------------------------+-----------------------------------------|
|Not Known |Less than 5 |
+------------------------------------------------------------------------+

                       

12b. Please provide SIMD deciles for all applications granted as per the
total number provided in your response to question 3.

+------------------------------------------------------------------------+
|SIMD Decile |Number of applications |
|------------------------------+-----------------------------------------|
|1 |15 |
|------------------------------+-----------------------------------------|
|2 |11 |
|------------------------------+-----------------------------------------|
|3 |6 |
|------------------------------+-----------------------------------------|
|4 |Less than 5 |
|------------------------------+-----------------------------------------|
|5 |Less than 5 |
|------------------------------+-----------------------------------------|
|6 |Less than 5 |
|------------------------------+-----------------------------------------|
|7 |Less than 5 |
|------------------------------+-----------------------------------------|
|8 |Less than 5 |
|------------------------------+-----------------------------------------|
|9 |8 |
|------------------------------+-----------------------------------------|
|10 |Less than 5 |
|------------------------------+-----------------------------------------|
|Not Known |Less than 5 |
+------------------------------------------------------------------------+

12c. Does the Council take the SIMD decile of applicants into
consideration when deciding whether to authorise a discretionary deferral
ELC funding application? The Local Authority’s decision is based on an
assessment of each child’s development and well-being irrespective of SMID
decile of applicants.

 

Your Request for a Review

 

On 8 September 2021, you requested a review of the Council’s decision. You
asked for a reconsideration of the decision not to provide numbers fewer
than 5 for some answers. You stated that within its response, the Council
had provided one number smaller than this already so this position is
inconsistent. Also, you stated you had received responses from various
other councils this year, and in the previous two years you had sent these
FOI requests, which contained numbers smaller than 5. Furthermore, you
said the Information Commissioner's Office had upheld your requests to
review some councils' decisions to withhold this information in the past.

 

Response to Your Request for Review

 

I have discussed with Council Officers your position and their response is
as follows: -

 

We maintain that when there are less than five such cases, we are not in a
position to give you any further details as this might lead to the
relevant individuals being identified. Dundee is a very small local
authority in terms of geographical area.

 

Children are vulnerable individuals under various types of legislation and
it is Dundee City Councils view that children should be afforded as much
privacy as possible.

 

In reference to the two specific instances with our initial reply to your
FOI request where we reference a number less than 5 (questions 2 and 3).
This is only done because the number of children overall is known to be 52
(question 1) and the number given for ‘council run settings’ is 48,
therefore invariably, the remaining number for ‘private/voluntary
settings’ is 4.

 

Given the above circumstances of these children and not knowing what other
identifiers are in the public domain, Dundee City Council feels that we
should err on the side of caution in relation to the privacy of these
children. I therefore refuse these parts of your request in terms of
Section 38(1)(b) and (2)(A) of the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act
2002.

 

My Conclusion

 

If you are unhappy with my decision you may appeal to the Scottish
Information Commissioner.  You must submit your appeal to the Scottish
Information Commissioner within six months of receiving my decision. 
Further details on the Scottish Information Commissioner's appeal
procedure can be found at [email address] or telephone
(01334) 464610 or write to Scottish Information Commissioner, Kinburn
Castle, Doubledykes Road, St Andrews, Fife, KY16 9DS.  If you are unhappy
with the Scottish Information Commissioner's decision you may then have
the right to appeal to the Court of Session.

 

Yours faithfully

 

 

 

Gregory Colgan

Chief Executive 

 

Dundee House 

50 North Lindsay Street

Dundee DD1 1NN

Tel: [1]01382 434431

Email: [2][email address]

 

Secretary : Fiona Thomson

Email: [3][email address] 

 

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