Make an Enquiry
Contact Us

ADCS past-president calls for Nice for children's services

The inaugural president of the Association of Directors of Children’s Services (ADCS) has called for the creation of an institute for excellence in children’s services to tackle long-standing problems with child protection practice.

Writing in the latest edition of CYP Now, John Freeman, ADCS president in 2007, the organisation's first year, said an institute focused on best practice in children’s services was the best way to improve the safeguarding of vulnerable children.

Freeman, former DCS in Dudley and now a freelance consultant, said he had come to conclusion after seeing little evidence that work over the past decade to improve children’s services has had “any lasting impact”.

He said: “I’ve come to the view that we need something like the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (Nice) in the NHS, a National Institute for Children’s Services Excellence that would promote best practice, with professional authority and based on the evidence.

“This conclusion is driven by the recognition that nothing else has worked.”

Freeman’s comments come on the eve of this year’s National Children’s and Adults’ Services conference in Manchester, and comes at a time when local authorities' ability to improve struggling children’s services departments is under intense scrutiny. Earlier this month, ministers announced Slough Council would follow Doncaster to become the second authority to have children’s services hived off to an independent trust following a series of critical Ofsted inspections.

Reforms introduced over the past decade have failed to tackle the “unacceptably high” child death rate, Freeman adds, with communication problems among professionals a recurring theme in serious case reviews.

“We have recently seen calls for a national child death database so that learning can be shared,” Freeman said. “I argue, though, what’s needed is more than a database – we urgently need a dedicated national institute for children’s services excellence, working across agencies to identify strategic and tactical improvements.”

Story courtesy of Children & Young People Now

Knowledge & Resources

Keep abreast of the latest news in the children's services sector.

Government launches tackling violence against women and girls strategy


A new government strategy to ensure women and girls are safe everywhere has been launched by Home Secretary Priti Patel.

The strategy sets out a clear ambition to increase support for victims and survivors, increase the number of perpetrators brought to justice and to reduce the prevalence of violence against women and girls in the [...]

Read Full Story

Spending on early help services halves in decade


Spending on early intervention for services has halved over the last 10 years, charities have warned.

Between 2010 and 2020, local authorities in England reduced spending on early intervention services from £3.6bn to £1.8bn, analysis of council budgets by a group of leading children’s charities has revealed.

The most deprived local authorities in the UK reduced early [...]

Read Full Story

Cafcass introduces revised working arrangements following rise in private law cases


Cafcass has introduced some revised arrangements for managing unsustainable caseloads.

The process has been implemented in the Cafcass areas covering Birmingham, the Black Country, Shropshire, Worcestershire, Staffordshire and Herefordshire family courts due to unsustainable pressures on the family justice system in the area.

Cafcass Chief Executive, Jacky Tiotto said: “I have said publicly before that any [...]

Read Full Story
Children First is an online resource for professionals working with children presented by WillisPalmer, providing you with the latest news, features and interviews.
Subscribe Today
Delivering a diverse, reliable range of services to children and their families across the UK
D1, Parkside, Knowledge Gateway, Nesfield Road, Colchester, Essex CO4 3ZL
Contact Us

A Mackman Group collaboration - market research by Mackman Research | website design by Mackman

closechevron-downbars linkedin facebook pinterest youtube rss twitter instagram facebook-blank rss-blank linkedin-blank pinterest youtube twitter instagram