• Ofsted finds 'no improvement' at St Helens

    18 January 2022

    Children’s services at St Helens MBC have not improved despite an injection of increased funding, Ofsted has concluded.

  • Leadership blamed for 'inadquate' children's services

    22 December 2021

    ‘Instability’ in senior leadership has led to ‘serious failures’ in Bury MBC’s children’s services, Ofsted has found.

  • Spielman: No silver bullet for children's social care

    07 December 2021

    Ofsted chief inspector Amanda Spielman has warned there is no ‘silver bullet’ to the long-term problems in the children’s social care sector.

  • Care managers 'unaware' of weaknesses in service

    30 November 2021

    Children’s services at Halton BC have undergone a ‘deterioration’ since the council was judged to require improvement, a watchdog has found.

  • National review after concerns at children's homes

    29 November 2021

    Education secretary Nadhim Zahawi has commissioned a national review in the wake of Ofsted deregistering two residential children’s homes operating in Doncaster after safeguarding concerns.

  • Council pledges to support children after services rated ‘inadequate’

    29 November 2021

    The leadership of North East Lincolnshire Council has pledged to protect and support young people after the local authority’s children’s services were judged ‘inadequate’ overall.

  • Watchdog's concern over deprivation of liberty orders

    25 November 2021

    Ofsted highlighted a ‘huge rise’ in the use of deprivation of liberty orders by councils.

  • Slough accepts damning SEND report

    17 November 2021

    Watchdogs have demanded action from Slough Council to address ‘significant areas of weakness’ in its services for children with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND).

  • Watchdog calls for mandatory transfer scheme

    20 October 2021

    Ofsted has joined calls for councils to be required to take in unaccompanied asylum-seeking children.

  • Putting it right

    05 October 2021

    What does the future hold for children’s social care and what are the priorities for reform? Ann McGauran reports from a Westminster Education Forum conference.

  • Transforming services through COVID

    29 September 2021

    Keeping children’s services going through a pandemic was hard enough, but St Helens MBC has embarked on its own journey of transformation, as Jim Leivers explains.

  • Making the leap

    14 September 2021

    Patrick Melia explains Sunderland City Council’s drive and determination in taking its children’s services from inadequate to outstanding.

  • Voyage for improvement

    14 September 2021

    Blackpool Council’s new model of practice is shifting service culture away from a focus on process to one that works with families to achieve optimum impact and outcomes for their children, writes Victoria Gent.

  • Helping care leavers thrive

    10 September 2021

    Jon Rouse highlights Stoke-on-Trent City Council’s progress in supporting care leavers. Getting things right ‘starts with the basics’, he says.

  • SEND children being left behind by council

    31 August 2021

    Children with special educational needs are being left behind by council services across Bournemouth, Christchurch and Poole, inspectors have found. 

  • Durham told to end unregistered placements

    31 August 2021

    Durham Council must take decisive action to end unregistered placements for children in care, Ofsted has warned. 

  • The Lambeth report is a warning to us all

    04 August 2021

    The historic abuse of looked-after children in Lambeth LBC is about the worst example of what happens when a toxic political culture poisons the entire authority, says Michael Burton.

  • We’re in this for the long haul

    02 August 2021

    Six years on from the Jay report into child sexual exploitation in Rotherham, council leader Cllr Chris Read says Government must support local authorities in the fight against abuse. But his organisation is ‘not waiting for national improvements’.

  • Ofsted chief rubbishes ‘inspection tsunami’ claim

    09 July 2021

    Amanda Spielman has sought to ease concerns about a deluge of inspections as the watchdog resumes normal activity in September.

  • Slough’s services put children first

    07 July 2021

    In April, Slough’s independent children’s services trust became wholly owned by the council. Josie Wragg and Tony Hunter talk to Ann McGauran about their rapport and shared vision despite the local authority’s hugely challenging financial position.