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Ofsted reports

A round up of the Ofsted reports of children's services inspections published in September.
Cumbria strengthens referrals and contacts since 'requires improvement' rating
Cumbria children’s services has continued to strengthen arrangements for managing referrals and contacts since the last inspection in November 2017, when the overall effectiveness of services was judged to require improvement to be good, Ofsted has said.
Senior leaders and managers now have a clear oversight and a better understanding of operational practice at the front door. Children and their families receive quick and appropriate responses from the multi-agency safeguarding hub (MASH) when enquiries for early help and support and safeguarding concerns are received.
“Children who need urgent protection receive an effective response, with prompt action taken to reduce risks. Children’s assessments are mostly informative. They include children’s histories and views, which inform the analysis of risk, but issues of identity are not well considered as part of the overall assessment. The response to young people who present as homeless remains poor, despite this being raised at the last inspection,” said the report.
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Improvements made at Derbyshire but further work needed
A stronger leadership team has created stability at a strategic level across the service at Derbyshire County Council, Ofsted has said.
Following the single inspection in 2013, a council restructure led to a substantial reduction in leadership and management capacity in children’s services. Combined with a period of organisational instability, this resulted in a significant decline in the quality of services for vulnerable children.
“When appointed in 2016, the executive director for children’s services (DCS) identified the root causes of the decline and the key priority actions necessary to improve services. She acted to secure the support of political and corporate leaders, ensuring significant reinvestment in the service,” said the report.
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Knowledge & Resources

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

Special Report: Cost-of-living impact on social workers, foster carers and service users

27/09/2022

More children will go into care as a result of the cost-of-living crisis, social workers are predicting.

A survey of social workers carried out by BASW and SWU found that social workers overwhelmingly predicted vulnerable adults could die this winter, that more children would go into care, there will be a spike in domestic violence, [...]

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Union publishes guidance for journalists on social work reporting

27/09/2022

Guidance for journalists on how to report on social work matters has been published by the Social Workers Union.

The guidelines, which were produced after members of the Social Workers Union (SWU) came forward with harrowing stories about the impact of poor media reporting about the profession, are designed to provide more protection for those [...]

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Former Children’s Minister pledges to raise profile of social workers in Parliament

26/09/2022

Former Children’s Minister Tim Loughton MP has pledged to do everything he can do in Parliament to raise the profile of social workers in a bid to end the unfair portrayal of the profession in the media and in society.

Tim Loughton MP

Speaking at a WillisPalmer online Social Work event to celebrate one year since [...]

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Children First is an online resource for professionals working with children presented by WillisPalmer, providing you with the latest news, features and interviews.
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