Ofsted Inspection - Salford City Council

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Inspection of services for children in
need of help and protection, children looked
after and care leavers
North West Directors
History

Working towards a new framework with
other inspectorates (represented a
significant challenge)

Major support for one children looked
after inspection

Pilots undertaken for multi-agency
inspections and looked after children
inspections. (pilots showed that both
could be challenging to deliver)

Positive feedback on inspection of child
protection arrangements
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What did this tell us?
 Fragmenting inspection about what happens
to children who need help, protection and
possible care – not helpful
 One (limiting) word to describe a complex
local system not the right thing to do – sector
views
 Separate multi-agency inspections –
intended start in April and June – deferred.
Press release in April, agreed with other
inspectorates
 New single inspection (child protection,
looked after children (adoption and fostering)
and care leavers – starting in September –
pilots in June
 Continuing to work with other inspectoratesthrough a project group and regular Chief
Inspector meetings

What’s going on?

Developing a single inspection- our
journey to here

Taking the best learning from the three
inspections

More than ‘adding’ together- the right
profile for all the children and young
people in scope and the opportunities this
gives us

Focus on children and young people’s
experiences- remains key methodology

Consultation on the planned changes
underway
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Scope

those children and young people at risk of harm (but who
have not yet reached the ‘significant harm’ threshold) and for
whom a preventative service would provide the help that they
and their family need to reduce the likelihood of that risk or
harm escalating and reduce the need for statutory
intervention (EARLY HELP)

those children and young people referred to the local
authority, including those for whom urgent action has to be
taken to protect them; those subject to further assessment;
and those subject to child protection enquiries (CRA)

those who become the subject of a multi-agency child
protection plan setting out the help that will be provided to
them and their families to keep them safe and to promote
their welfare (CP PLAN)
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
those children and young people who have been assessed
as no longer needing a child protection plan, but who may
have continuing needs for help and support (POST CP
PLAN)

those children and young people who are receiving (or
whose families are receiving) social work services where
there are significant levels of concern about children’s
safety and welfare, but these have not reached the
significant harm threshold or the threshold to become
looked after (CHILDREN IN NEED)
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
those children and young people accommodated under
section 20 and those ‘in care’ during or as a result of
proceedings under section 31 of the Children Act 1989 and
those accommodated through the police powers of
protection and emergency protection orders (ACCOM/
CLA)

those children and young people who are being, or have
been, looked after under the Children (Leaving Care) Act
2000 (eligible, relevant and former relevant young people)
(care leavers)

those children and young people who have left care to
return home, or are living with families under a special
guardianship order, residence order or adoption order
(permanence)
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The judgements we will make
on the pilots

The overall effectiveness of services and arrangements for
children who need help and protection, children looked after and
care leavers.
This is a cumulative judgement derived from:

The experiences and progress of children who need help
and protection.

The experiences and progress of children looked after and
achieving permanence including graded judgements on:

 Adoption performance
 The experiences and progress of care leavers
Leadership, management and governance including:
Separate grade The effectiveness and impact of the Local
Safeguarding Children Board
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The new framework – overview

3 key judgements – Protecting children; Looked after children and Achieving
Permanence; Leadership, Management and Governance



3 graded judgements – adoption, care leavers, LSCB

Inadequate in any key judgement limits overall effectiveness to
inadequate



4 point judgement scale – inadequate - outstanding
New ‘requires improvement to get to good’ grade. No longer have a grade
of ‘adequate’

There is a qualifier for ‘leadership’ in inadequate places
Graded judgements influence but are unlikely to ‘limit alone’
Sets out Ofsted’s role in improvement straight an inspection
A new evaluation schedule


Practice and impact brought together



‘Requires improvement to be good’

Key judgements and graded judgements
Defining our expectations of ‘good’ - a
new good
Generic components to ‘outstanding’
Widespread or serious = inadequate in
key judgements
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The methodology
Week one timeline


Pre inspection preparation- small team

Wednesday- lead and small team on site
after midday

Thursday- children and young people
information available by midday

Friday- leave site by 2pm
Tuesday- lead calls- sets up the
inspection and outlines what we need and
timeframes
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Case file auditing- 12 children
and young people of the 25 cases tracked

Six children and young people in need of help and protection to
include:




one child under three years;
one adolescent;
all will have been subject to an initial child protection
conference and at least two of the cases will be post review;
 One child that has been subject to an initial child protection
conference but who did not become subject to a child
protection plan;
Four children looked after to include:



at least one child who has a plan for adoption;
one child who has recently returned home in the last three –
six months
Two care leavers: one relevant and one former relevant.
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Remainder of children and
young people tracked (total of
25):



Criteria to be used outlined in handbook;
Observations of practice- will inform;
Informing the LA in week two so most records
prepared.
In addition:

Four foster carer records (minimum)- related
where possible;

Four prospective adopter records (minimum) related where possible;

Clarity about difference between case tracking
and sampling (around a further 50).
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The methodology

Intensive case tracking forms the early part of
the inspection

Working across judgements- why? What does
this mean?- understanding children and young
people’s experiences.

Each social care HMI will track at least five
cases from across the scope and sample
further cases as the key lines of enquiry
emerge.

Role of the cross remit specialist (ELS):
tracking the experiences of children and
young people in early help, the education of
looked after children and care leaver’s access
to education, employment and training.
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
Extended team meeting in week three
must happen (first on-site week for full
inspection team)
 Confirm good practice
 Identify further key lines of enquiry
 Shared understanding of children and
young people’s experiences- identify
practice and leadership, management and
governance issues
 Children’s experiences are at the core of
the inspection.
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The judgements




Include a paragraph that describes the judgement

Inadequate- different definitions for the graded
judgements
Define good
Requires improvement- not yet good
Inadequate- ‘widespread and serious’ across key
judgements
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Report formatbeing clear and authoritative



Piloting new report style
Much more concise style of writing
Accessible summary as part of main
report to replace the children and young
people’s version
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Next steps

Evaluating the pilots (2)opportunities to feedback and
learn what has worked well and
what has worked less well.

Opportunities to share learning
from the pilots

Implementation in after September
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Supporting improvement survey work and
good practice case studies

Ofsted has always sought ways to
support improvement

Messages from inspection via the
annual report

The good practice website (list of
what is available need more)

Survey work and thematic
inspections
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Thematic inspections by Ofsted



6-8 social care thematic inspection reports published
per year
Themes selected following consultation with sector
Safeguarding and LAC inspections identified
Most recently published
Effectiveness of IROs thematic inspection
published June 2013
What about the children (a look at how well adult and children’s
services work together) published March 2013
Missing children (a look at practice for children who run away)
published
February 2013
Planned or being considered
Long term neglect
Family Justice
Commissioning
Post permanence support Early help Out of borough placements
Key findings IRO

Overall, the pace of progress in IROs taking on the enhanced
responsibilities was too slow in most local authorities

Oversight of care plans not sufficiently robust – IROs didn’t always
challenge delays for children strongly enough



Caseloads were too high in most local authorities
The views of children not always fully taken into account
Formal dispute resolution processes were in place, but not always
well understood or applied
Key findings (cont’d)

The IRO role in challenging overall performance as corporate
parents was under-developed:
 IRO annual reports, where they were existed, were nearly all


weak
 Few IRO services had forged strong links with CiC Council or
with senior corporate parents
The independent challenge that IROs can offer was welcomed by
senior managers
Management oversight of IRO service quality not strong enough in
most local authorities
Key findings (cont’d)

The effectiveness of IROs would not be easily improved by
removing them from the employment of local authorities – there is
much scope for improvement under the current arrangements
Recommendations
Local authorities should:

Take urgent action to implement in full the revised IRO guidance
and ensure that:
 IROs have the capacity to undertake all aspects of their role


effectively
Management oversight of IROs is sufficiently robust
A publically accessible annual report is produced, setting out
the quality of corporate parenting and care for looked after
children and including information on IRO caseloads
Supporting improvement
Good practice case studies
On website good practice case studies individual examples of
good practice seen by inspectors. Forty examples on site more to
be added.
Statistics and analysis
Data teams now providing regular statistical updates. Inspection
outcomes across the sector and regional profiles. So North West
has the highest number of any region of regulated services
accommodating many of the countries children looked after.
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Supporting improvement other tools
Statistics and analysis of North W3aest
Children’s home 71% good or better slightly worse than national
average 72%. Best region South West at 78%
Local authority Child Protection 48% good or better. Better than
England average. Best region London at 67%
Adoption agencies 86% good or better. Better than England
averages 79%. Best region South West at 90%
Fostering services 72% worse than national average 78%. Best
regions NEYH and East of England at 83%
Local authority children looked after 61%better than average
54%. Best region East Midlands at 67%
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