SCIE minutes of the meeting of the Board of Trustees
Held on Thursday 20 March 2003, 13.30 - 16.30 Goldings House, 2 Hay's Lane, London, SE1
Board: Jane Campbell (chair), Gail Tucker, Terry Philpot, Roy Taylor, Geraldine Macdonald, Paul Martin, Diana McNeish, Shokat Babul, Ratna Dutt, Susannah Walker.
Staff: Bill Kilgallon (Chief Executive), Victoria McNeill (Head of Corporate Services & Company Secretary), Amanda Edwards (Head of Knowledge Services), Enid Levin (Staff Representative), Maria Doyle (minutes).
2) Identification of any other business:
The Board was informed of Mike Oliver's resignation from the Board due to ill health and that Susannah Walker would be leaving at the end of her term in October 2003. Recruitment of replacements for Gilbert Smith, Mike Oliver and Susannah Walker would be discussed in agenda item 4.
Date to be scheduled for next SCIE Awayday.
Minutes of the Board Meeting and the AGM held on 23 January 2003 were approved by the Board and signed by Jane Campbell. Minutes of the private meeting of the same date were approved and signed by Gail Tucker.
A date is still to be set for the SCIE media lunch. The Board would be informed as soon as the date was set. It was noted that the Board would like to have longer lead in-times for events and meetings where possible
Feedback on the SCIE Corporate Plan 2003-6 and the Business Plan 2003-4 has now been received from the Department of Health and the Welsh Assembly.
Members of the Audit Committee (Gail Tucker, Geraldine Macdonald and Shokat Babul) provided Victoria McNeill with their meeting dates. She would confirm the dates for 2003/2004.
4) Chair's Activity Report (paper):
The Chair met with Peter Jones of the Department of Health (DH) to discuss Board recruitment and it was agreed that SCIE should take control of the recruitment process for the new Board members although the two Department of Health nominations would still be subject to ministerial approval. Denise Platt will be the DH representative on the recruitment panel along with an independent assessor, the Chair and one other SCIE Board member.
Board members are invited to contact the Chair if they wish to be on the recruitment panel, or if they have any recommendations as to what skills and experience the new members might usefully possess.
Chief Executive's Activity Report (paper):
The Chief Executive expanded on points two and five in his report:
SCIE received a letter from Nigel Crisp (March 17) announcing "a significant 18 month programme of change to ensure that the Department is able to move confidently into its new role"; which will result in a very different and significantly smaller Department. Enclosed with the letter was a briefing pack 'The New Vision for Health and Social Care - DH Change Programme' which was distributed to the Board. The Department will have a new structure with 4 teams reporting to the chief executive:
- Health and Social Care Standards Group
- Health and Social Care Delivery Group
- Corporate Management and Development Group
- Chief Executive's office
The Health and Social Care Standards and Quality Group will be led by the Chief Medical Officer, Professor Sir Liam Donaldson, and will be responsible for sponsoring SCIE, GSCC, CSCI, NICE and CHAI, amongst other duties. The group will have a senior team including one post with specific responsibility for social care.
There will be two Boards responsible for the Department, the DH Management Board and the Health and Social Care Delivery Board. Trustees noted the report and welcomed the positive role for SCIE in the new structure. They shared the concern expressed by the Chief Executive at the lack of social care professional on both of the Boards.
The Chief Executive reported on a recent staff audit. He considered that SCIE's staff did not reflect the diversity of the population it serves or the population from which it recruits, in terms of ethnic origin or disability. Ratna Dutt agreed and expressed her disappointment at this. SCIE has established an Equal Opportunities and Diversity Group to which Ratna is offering advice. The group is currently looking at recruitment issues and anticipates reporting on this in April.
5) Corporate Plan 2003-2006 and Business Plan 2003-2004:
The Chief Executive gave credit to Victoria McNeill and Amanda Edwards for putting the above together, noted that this was not the final draft, and invited feedback from the Board requesting that issues of language and accessibility not be addressed at this meeting.
Board members made a number of suggestions for improvements to the Plans including:
- Increasing the focus on service users and making SCIE's commitment to service users more central;
- Highlighting the importance of voluntary organisations as stakeholders;
- SCIE giving further thought to non-electronic, more bespoke means of dissemination;
- SCIE not only being the developer of good practice but being the facilitator or broker of good practice developed by others. By acting as a uniting partner, SCIE could assist in avoiding duplication of work on good practice;
- Putting joint working higher on the agenda;
- Increasing SCIE's focus on issues of management and supervision (as recommended in the Climbié report);
- Including references to SCIE's work with ADSS;
- Considering whether child protection should be contained in SCIE's first set of priorities;
- Being clear about what SCIE means by inclusivity, so that people can have confidence in our knowledge base and other output;
- Highlighting the importance of the independent sector as a stakeholder;
- Increasing the focus on transparency of our working methods;
- Taking a more consistent line on the inclusion of Northern Ireland in the Plans;
- Increasing the emphasis on our media strategy.
The Corporate Plan and Business Plan will be amended in accordance with the Board's wishes before the final draft is presented to DH.
6) Partners' Council:
The Board members' views were sought on key issues emerging from consultation responses to date. Don Brand took note of recommendations from Board members which included the following:
- The function of the Partners' Council was to have a demonstrable influence on SCIE's work, as opposed to an executive function within SCIE;
- A co-chairing function to be considered, with a SCIE Board member and a stakeholder sharing the role;
- The Partners' Council should be involved on a consultative basis in SCIE strategy such as the Corporate Plan, Business Plan and Work Programme;
- Partners' Council should not necessarily be envisaged as individuals sitting around a board table. Imaginative structures of conferencing were encouraged.
- A UK-wide Partners' Council was preferred, with specific places for representation from the four countries but with country-specific reference groups to support and feed into those individual members;
- Partners' Council members should be participating to influence SCIE's work in the improvement of social care services generally, and not just represent individual strands, although at times expertise in distinct areas such as children's services would be valuable;
- A satisfactory level service-user involvement in the Partners' Council would need to be ensured which would require adequate resourcing by SCIE.
That Don Brand bring to the 26 June 2003 Board meeting the final Partners' Council recommendations.
7) Report on Participation (paper):
The Board was invited to consider proposals to put SCIE's commitments into practice by ensuring the participation of its stakeholders in SCIE's work and SCIE's specific commitment to place users, carers and their supporters at the heart of its work.
The Board agreed the overall resource and that a framework and some additional resources in terms of finance and staff would be needed to ensure SCIE fulfils its commitments re participation.
A paper on the options for a framework would be brought to the June 2003 Board for comment.
8) Adoption of a single human resources framework (paper) and pay and terms and conditions of service (paper):
The Board noted the progress in establishing a single human resources framework. A final report from SCIE's HR consultant would be circulated to the Board and, subject to any further comments from the Board, the Chief Executive would proceed to negotiate the recommendations with staff.
The Board members would be sent the report by post and email for comment as soon as it is ready.
9) Recommendations for SCIE's first Board meeting outside London (paper):
The Board accepted the recommendation in the report to hold its October board meeting in Cardiff.
The Company Secretary to plan the October event along the lines proposed in the paper.
10) Revised assessment criteria for payment to trustees (paper):
The Board approved and adopted the revised criteria.
11) Financial report (paper):
The Board approved the budget for the 2003/2004 year.