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Ofsted inspections

A round up of Ofsted inspections from the last month.

Ofsted praises progress at Dudley

“Positive progress” has been noted at Dudley Council’s children’s services department by Ofsted in a monitoring visit of the authority.

In the fourth monitoring visit since the local authority was judged to be inadequate in April 2016, inspectors said the implementation of the local authority’s improvement plan is resulting in positive progress.

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Cheshire West and Chester praised in work tackling neglect

Strong partnership working in Cheshire West and Chester has been praised by Ofsted and other inspectorates in a Joint Targeted Area Inspection focusing on neglect.

Ofsted, HMI Probation, HMI Constabulary, Fire and Rescue Services and The Care Commission found Cheshire West and Chester had a “clear and collective commitment” to improving responses to children who suffer neglect.

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JTAI report

Sustained progress at Sunderland, says Ofsted

Ofsted has highlighted “sustained progress” at a children’s services department taken over by a mutual earlier this year.

After Sunderland Council’s children’s services department was judged inadequate in June 2015, it set up Together for Children to deliver children’s services functions on behalf of the council, including early help, social care and education services for children.

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Leadership at Camden is judged as outstanding by Ofsted

Ofsted has praised children’s services in Camden, rating them overall as good.

An inspection of the London Borough rated leadership, management and governance and adoption services as outstanding while child protection, children requiring permanence and care leavers services were rated as good.

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Poole ‘requires improvement’ finds Ofsted

Children’s services in Poole require improvement to be good, Ofsted has said.

Inspectors highlighted that the director of children’s services and her leadership team have worked purposefully with partners to implement a number of changes to improve outcomes for children since the last inspection in 2011.

“As a result, some children receive helpful interventions,” said the report. “Yet, despite these developments, outcomes for children across the services are inconsistent. While the council’s adoption performance and its support for care leavers are strong, the pace of overall improvement across the service has been variable, and weaknesses have emerged in services for children looked after and in need of help and protection.”

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Ofsted praises greater workforce confidence at Reading

Greater workforce confidence has been identified by Ofsted inspectors in a follow-up visit of Reading children’s services.

Skilled, experienced early help practitioners and their managers have a stronger profile and influence in children’s services. This is demonstrated in greater workforce confidence, exemplified through, for example, more rigorous escalations of safeguarding concerns to the children’s single point of access (SPA), said the report of the fourth monitoring visit since the local authority was judged inadequate in June 2016.

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Ofsted rates Shropshire children’s services as good

Strong operational practice in early help services for children in Shropshire has been identified by Ofsted inspectors.

The Ofsted inspection team rated Shropshire’s children’s services as good overall.

“A particular focus on early help services for children who need help and protection or are at risk of child sexual exploitation, neglect and/or domestic abuse has led to strong operational practice in these areas, supported by a keen culture of learning and improvement,” said the report.

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Ofsted: South Tyneside’s children’s services are good

Children’s services in South Tyneside have been rated as good overall, with adoption performance being praised as outstanding.

The senior leadership team has systematically and comprehensively addressed shortfalls identified in the joint targeted area inspection (JTAI) in February 2016, and outcomes for children in need of help and protection and children looked after are improving and are now good.

“The chief executive is resolute in his ambition to provide outstanding services for children in South Tyneside and has recruited a senior leadership team that shares his ambition. The director of children’s services, who took up post in 2016, has taken a systematic approach to improving services for children,” said the report.

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Knowledge & Resources

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

£130m announced to tackle violent and knife crime

08/03/2021

A package of measures to tackle violent crime backed by £130.5 million has been revealed by the government.

The funding will be made available to tackle knife crime, serious violence and murder and new money will be targeted at steering young people away from crime.

Home Secretary Priti Patel said: “I am determined to cut crime and [...]

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Schools will focus on wellbeing as well as learning

08/03/2021

The government’s focus on ‘catching up’ as children return to school will be as much about their emotional wellbeing as learning, the new children’s commissioner has said.

As many children returned to school today after two months in national lockdown, Dame Rachel de Souza said she had spoken to Sir Kevan Collins, who has been [...]

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Referrals down by 20% during latest lockdown

08/03/2021

Referrals to children’s social care fell by more than 20% in January during the latest national lockdown, official Department for Education statistics has shown.

The Ofsted chief inspector warned before Christmas that child abuse could be going undetected https://www.willispalmer.com/ofsted-child-abuse-could-be-going-undetected/ and the latest DfE figures show that referrals between 25 and 31 January 2021 was 23% lower [...]

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