09 Sep 2021

Ofsted highlights good progress

Ofsted inspectors have endorsed the way the Isle of Wight Council continued to support children and young people during the COVID-19 pandemic.

During a recent focused visit, inspectors found children's services had planned and delivered a well-coordinated and effective response throughout the crisis.

They said the council had continued to prioritise and respond swiftly to concerns about children.

"Their actions have been swift and well considered, with an appropriate focus on supporting the most vulnerable," they added.

The virtual inspection was carried out as part of Ofsted’s normal inspection framework and focused on the local authority’s response and arrangements regarding children in need and children subject to child protection planning, including children with disabilities.

The inspection team also considered how children’s services have continued to safeguard children and young people since the outbreak of COVID-19.

A letter published by Ofsted on Tuesday (7 September) praised senior leaders for continuing at pace with their transformation project and said the council's new social work model and approach had made a positive impact on social work practice.

Other key findings included:

• Disabled children are supported by experienced, skilled and dedicated social workers who know them well.

• Children develop good relationships with workers they know and trust.

• Social workers speak with children sensitively and there is good consideration of children's needs and abilities.

• Children's plans are well-constructed documents which demonstrate effective and responsive planning.

• When safeguarding concerns about children arise, multi-agency partners are fully involved and consulted.

The letter also highlighted some areas for improvement, including the quality of assessments to ensure better consideration of parental histories and previous agency involvement.

Welcoming the report, Councillor Debbie Andre, Cabinet member for children's services, education and skills, said: "This was a routine but intensive check from Ofsted which does not result in a graded judgement but comments on a specific area of work.

"I am pleased to say that Ofsted noted continued good progress from our previous inspection in late 2018 when our services were judged to be 'good' in all regards.

"I would like to thank all of the teams working in children’s services who have gone above and beyond to keep our standards consistently high as evidenced in this report.

"This is an area of the council's activity that requires constant attention and there is and always will be more to do but it is good to have external validation that we are continuing to do well in this vital area and keeping our island children safe."

The full findings of the inspection is available on the Ofsted website at https://reports.ofsted.gov.uk/provider/44/80419

 

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Inspectors found children's services had planned and delivered a well-coordinated and effective response throughout COVID
Inspectors found children's services had planned and delivered a well-coordinated and effective response throughout COVID
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  • Ofsted said the council had continued to prioritise and respond swiftly to concerns about children.
  • Inspectors found children's services had planned and delivered a well-coordinated and effective response throughout the crisis.
 
Isle of Wight, UK