Social media ‘could help social workers’

January 13, 2018 0 comments

family life

Social media posts could provide social workers with useful insights into troubled families, a serious case review has concluded. Such reviews are conducted by frontline agencies whenever a vulnerable child is killed or comes to serious harm. This one concerned the death of a two year-old boy. He had been killed by his mother’s partner…

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500 new child protection investigations a day

December 20, 2017 5 comments

family life

Councils launched more than 500 new child welfare investigations a day last year according to new figures from the Local Government Association (LGA). The organisation represents 370 English and Welsh councils. it contrasts the figure with the situation ten years ago, when an average of just 200 investigations  a day were launched. LGA Chair Richard…

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Children in need, fraudulent petitions and more

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November 10, 2017 1 comment

family law

A week in family law The London Borough of Tower Hamlets has dismissed media concerns over their decision to place a child in the care of a Muslim foster family, following an investigation by a senior social worker from the council. The allegations, which were made in the national press, included that the child had…

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Number of child protection plans rocketing

November 7, 2017 1 comment

children in care

More than 51,000 children have now been made the subject of child protection plans, meaning social workers believe their safety or welfare is at risk. The total figure of 51,080 youngsters at the end of March represented an increase of no less than 770 over the 2016 total (50,310). The number of active protection plans…

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Government finds £20 million for council cooperation on children’s services

October 14, 2017 1 comment

children in care

The government is to make up to £20 million available to encourage different children’s services departments to cooperate with each other. Children’s Minister Robert Goodwill made the announcement at a social work conference in Bournemouth this week. A resulting series of “regional improvement alliances” between neighbouring authorities will be focused on sharing best practice and…

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‘Find another way’ DoE tells failing council

September 22, 2017 0 comments

children in care

Worcestershire County Council has been told to find a fresh approach to child protection services by the Department for Education. The County Council received a bottom-of-the-class “inadequate” rating following an inspection by Ofsted in January. There were “widespread and serious” failings in the council’s approach to child protection the inspectorate insisted. Overall control of the…

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North Lincolnshire Council is ‘outstanding’ says Ofsted

September 5, 2017 1 comment

social workers

North Lincolnshire Council in Scunthorpe has been judged ‘outstanding’ by Ofsted – one of only three authorities to receive the inspectorate’s highest accolade. Every aspect of the work undertaken by children’s services department received the top rating except its work with youngsters “who need help and protection”, which was only deemed “good”. Ofsted inspectors were…

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Social workers at West Yorkshire council plan more strikes

August 17, 2017 0 comments

child protection

Social workers at a troubled council in West Yorkshire may begin a further series of strikes  next month reports suggest. Kirklees Metropolitan Borough Council is currently rated ‘inadequate’ by Ofsted – but social workers claim staffing shortages and heavy workloads lie behind many of the problems. Following months of unrest, 240 members of trade union…

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Children’s services at ‘breaking point’

August 10, 2017 9 comments

family law

Council-run children’s services are at “breaking point”, having overspent their budgets by more than £600 million. A newly published report from the Local Government Association (LGA) suggests this could the result of a significant increase in the number of children in need of protection over the last decade. In 2015/16, more than 170,000 children were…

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West Midlands Council praised by Ofsted

July 10, 2017 4 comments

child protection

A local authority in the West Midlands has been praised by government inspectorate Ofsted for a range of improvements to its child protection services. Dudley Metropolitan Borough Council was in danger of losing responsibility for child protection altogether after inspectors dubbed its performance ‘inadequate’ last spring. But now they believe “positive progress” has been made….

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