LOCKDOWN 3: JANUARY 2021
WillisPalmer is continuing to provide our expert social work and psychological services during lockdown. We are utilising technology alongside safe working practices in line with government guidance to enable us to continue supporting vulnerable children and families.

Call 01206 878178 to discuss your requirements.
Make an Enquiry
Contact Us

Improvement required for children in care at Wirral

The scale of improvement required for children in care at Wirral children's services is greater than at the last inspection, Ofsted has warned.

At the time of the inspection in 2016, the judgement for the experiences of children in care was that it required improvement to be good. However, previous monitoring visits have reported that, following inspection, additional deficits in practice were also identified by the local authority. This, in addition to an increase in the numbers of children in care since the inspection, had led to an increase in the scale of improvement required, the report said.

"At this monitoring visit, inspectors found that while the local authority has put better systems in place, this has not yet resulted in improved permanence planning for children. Progress for care leavers is stronger, with evidence of service developments starting to make a positive impact for young people," said the monitoring visit which looked at the experiences of children in care and care leavers.

Children and young people whose cases were reviewed during this visit are seen regularly by their workers, and statutory requirements are met. More children have had their needs re-assessed, leading to better quality planning and improvement in outcomes for some children who have returned successfully to their birth families or are better supported in their placements.

However, many children still experience delay in their plan for permanence being implemented, and this causes some to experience further change or instability that prevents their outcomes from improving.

The report stated:

- Children who have a plan of adoption are not consistently matched and placed with adopters in a timely way. Where very young children are the subject of care proceedings, progress towards adoption is better.

- Most children seen who are in long-term foster placements are suitably matched, and many enjoy stable placements.

- The local authority has successfully completed the discharge of care orders via placement with parent regulations for 34 children in the last 12 months.

- There are a further 31 children identified as having this as their permanence option. During this visit, inspectors saw examples of strong, clear placement, with parents’ agreements and good support work to ensure that children were safe, and that their needs were met.

- The local authority has also identified 39 children who may benefit from living in special guardianship arrangements with their existing carers rather than being in care and in recent work seen, the assessments undertaken were effective, with high-quality support plans in place to help children living with special guardians.

- Achieving successful permanence for some children is made more difficult by their very complex life experiences and by previous poor social work practice.

- Social work practice with children in care has improved and there has been some increased stability in the workforce.

The report also noted that there are regular reviews of the support provided for children in care, and, for many, these reviews are well recorded and offer clear evidence of robust monitoring of the progress of plans. There has been an increase in the oversight that independent reviewing officers give to the progress of children’s plans, and some evidence of increased challenge.

There has been significant work to improve the service offered to all care leavers since the inspection in 2016, when the service was inadequate. There is evidence of regular supervision taking place in the care leavers’ team but recording of this is not sufficiently detailed or evaluative and does not always ensure actions are followed through or effectively monitored.

Wirral monitoring visit

Knowledge & Resources

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

Practice guidelines to accompany legislative changes on siblings in care

18/04/2021

CELCIS is seeking views to feed into practice guidelines which will accompany some legislative changes to uphold the rights and meet the needs of brothers and sisters with care experience.

Changes are being made to Section 13 of the Children (Scotland) 2020 Act, and the Looked After Children (Scotland) Amendment Regulations 2021 and most of these [...]

Read Full Story

Working households no guarantee for lifting families out of poverty

18/04/2021

Having an adult in the household in paid work is not sufficient to raise some families out of child poverty in Scotland, official statistics have shown.

While the risk of poverty is much lower for children where someone in the household is in paid work compared to those in workless households, not all work pays enough [...]

Read Full Story

£280 million boost for SEND provision

15/04/2021

The government has announced £280 million funding for special educational needs and disabilities provision.

The funding will be allocated to local authorities to enable them to create new places in early years settings, schools, academies and colleges. The funding can be used to contribute to the cost of creating a whole new special school, or by [...]

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