AILC’s Latest Analysis of Ofsted Reports re LSCBs May 2017

Our new analysis of Ofsted Reports shows that nearly half of LSCBs have been judged Good or Outstanding by Ofsted during the year 2016-2017. It also provides a summary of all comments regarding Chairs, LSCB themes and issues being highlighted by Ofsted, JTAI developments and areas for improvement.
The attributes of an effective Board, and the skills and contribution from an independent chair, provide very clear and important benchmarks for what needs to be built and sustained into new arrangements.  The six reports we have published have shown a steady improvement in LSCBs – and have reinforced the that effective partnerships bring  real benefits to safeguarding work.

This Report can be found here on the Private Member's Ofsted Analysis Page

The Children and Social Work Act has now received Assent

 Update - May 2017

On April 27th, just before the election was called, the Children and Social Work Act received the Royal Assent.   You can find a copy of the new Act here.  As well as provision for new local safeguarding arrangements, replacing SCRs and reforming CDOP, the Act contains important proposals on social work regulation, care leavers, the statutory inclusion of PHSE in schools and other clauses.
Here is the implementation timescale as we currently understand it:

Draft orders and regulations will be prepared for the minister after the election, and the revised guidance for 'Working Together' (plus anything else if it does not all come as one document) is being prepared in the summer and will be out for 12 week consultation in the autumn. This was expected to be September but is now probably going to be a little later due to the election. The expectation is that local plans will be drawn up and agreed for implementation by no later than April 2019, but that some areas may propose and have agreed new arrangements ahead of this. Further updates will be provided regularly by AILC.
The latest version of AILC's Briefing on Local Safeguarding Children Arrangements can be found on the Private Member's Government Review Page as well as a presentation on Future Safeguarding Arrangements, completed by AILC's Chair,  David Ashcroft.

Richard Scorer reports in the Guardian:
Government is Jeopardising progress on sexual exploitation

25th April, 2017

Proposals in children and social work bill to abolish LSCBs will make it harder for agencies to work together to protect vulnerable young people.  Read the full article here

AILC's Press Statement on ‘No Good Options - the report of the All Party Parliamentary Group for Children’ 

Issued -  March 21st 2017.
LSCB Chairs welcome the clear messages set out in the report of the APPGC. "As the report argues", says AILC Chair David Ashcroft, "We need a clear and consistent legal framework that operates across the country and provides a universal set of rights and entitlements –to enable effective partnerships, as modelled by the best LSCBs, and for which AILC's key principles are;

  • Safeguard the rights of ALL children consistently across the country
  • Duty to co-operate on ALL partners, particularly schools who see most of children
  • Independent challenge, authority and resource to fulfil functions and ensure learning
AILC's press statement is available to download below.

No Good Options: Report of the Inquiry into Children's Social Care in England

The All Party Parliamentary Group for Children (APPGC) published the findings of their latest Inquiry into children’s social care services in England in March 2017.  The report, ‘No Good Options’, pulls together information obtained throughout the duration of the Inquiry which ran from February 2016 to January 2017. 
Click here to read the full report

Tackling child sexual exploitation: Progress Report - published 16th Feb, 2017.

 The government published its Tackling Child Sexual Exploitation: Progress Report and announced a £40m package of measures to protect children and young people from sexual abuse, exploitation and trafficking, and to crack down on offenders.
It includes:
·         £7.5m for a new Centre of Expertise which aims to be the authoritative source of research and best practice on tackling child sexual abuse and exploitation, led by Barnardo’s
·         £20m for the National Crime Agency to tackle online child sexual exploitation
·         An additional £7m for organisations helping victims of sexual abuse, including children
·         £2.3m for the second phase of the successful Disrespect NoBody campaign, which raises young people’s awareness of healthy relationships
·         £2.2m from the Child Trafficking Protection Fund will help protect vulnerable children in the UK and overseas who are at risk of trafficking
·         Independent Child Trafficking Advocates service launched in three early adopter sites across the country for which will provide specialist support to trafficked children.
The Progress Report details delivery of the programme of work set out in the 2015 Tackling Child Sexual Exploitation Report.

New Research brings fresh insight into Debate

The relationship between poverty and deprivation, and levels of abuse and neglect, is a continuing and important area for research and political debate.  So is the capacity of agencies to respond to demand and need, depending on the resources available, and the levels of affluence in any given area.  Crudely - are affluent areas able to provide better responses to child protection and welfare, and do their inspection gradings reflect this?  The Ofsted Chief Inspector, the National Audit Office and Government have maintained that there is no correlation between deprivation, resources and performance grading - and we would agree that local leadership, clarity of purpose and strong partnerships all make a real difference - but new research findings bring fresh insight to this debate.  You may find the linked article from Community Care and research reports discussed useful when asking whether Ofsted ratings reflect deprivation and spending levels locally.  The summary Report on Identifying and Understanding Inequalities in Child Welfare Interventions: Comparative Studies in Four UK Countries - April 2015 - March 2017 is here.

What Difference is the Marac Process Making to the Lives of Children & Young People?

This template developed by SafeLives aims to help LSCBs link effectively with the Multi agency risk assessment conference (Marac) process and collate appropriate evidence to know how they are improving specific outcomes for children and young people who have been identified. This is aimed to assist LSCBs to coordinate the work of all partners in safeguarding children locally and monitor and challenge the effectiveness of Marac where necessary and appropriate to do so.

Child Death Review Database Development Project

CDR Project set out to investigate whether and how it would be possible to develop a ‘national’ database for England and Scotland to collect information from the child death reviews which are carried out in England by Child Death Overview Panels (CDOPs) and from the child death review process which is currently being developed in Scotland. The ultimate goal is to reduce child deaths in England and Scotland; this short-term development project is the first step on the way to developing a national information resource needed to support this goal.  Report out now - see here.

Safeguarding In Sport

Following the concerns reported in the national press, AILC has written to the FA and to CPSU to offer to work together. In addition, below is a list of Sport organisations (websites and contact numbers) that may be useful to promote on your own LSCB websites.

The NSPCC has launched a dedicated football hotline for victims of abuse, supported by the FA. The free helpline will be available 24 hours a day on 0800 023 2642.

NSPCC Child Protection in Sport Unit  

Webinar – Understanding grooming of children and young people in Sport

Safeguarding in Athletics

Safeguarding In Cricket

Safeguarding in Football

Safeguarding in Gymnastics

Safeguarding in Netball

Safeguarding in Rugby

Safeguarding in Swimming

Safeguarding in Tennis

Children Society launches Report on Troubled Teens

The Children’s Society recently launched a new report, ‘Troubled Teens: A study of the links between parenting and adolescent neglect’

The scale and negative impact of parental neglect has become widely-acknowledged in relation to young children (e.g. in the development of early years support for families). But although there is evidence that neglect of adolescents is also widespread and can have serious consequences, this topic has rarely been researched or directly responded to in practice. Please click here to read the full report and a summary or the policy and practice briefing which accompanies the report.

AILC Survey Results Out!

Over 400 responses from LSCB board members from across the country.  Providing a unique and extensive survey with views about Independence, Scrutiny and Challenge in the context of the Children Bill.  Places high value on key aspects of existing safeguarding partnership arrangements.

NAO Report

A new safeguarding report has been published in October by the NAO - 'Children in Need of help or Protection'. The report gives an overview and evaluation of safeguarding services, and its criticisms are of Government for failing to be proactive, Ofsted for being tardy with reviews, and LAs and LSCBs for not sufficiently frequently reaching ‘Good’.  AILC has also prepared a Briefing for its Members, which lists extracts from the NAO press release and NAO's main report in terms of the matters pertaining to LSCBs. 

  AILC Member Briefing

Children Inquiry on Children's Social Care, Inspection and Accountability

There was a meeting of the All Party Parliamentary Group for Children on 24 October 2016 for the Children Inquiry on Children’s Social Care, Inspection and Accountability to which AILC attended to contribute to the “No Good Options” APPGC report.  The minutes from the meeting can be found here.

Home Office Launches Disrespect NoBody Campaign

 The Home Office has launched Disrespect NoBody, a campaign to help young people understand what a healthy relationship is and re-think their views of controlling behaviour, violence, abuse, sexual abuse and consent.

AILC Submission to Parliament

AILC submitted its comments on the Children & Social Work Bill on the 4th January 2017. 

To see a copy of the Submission, please click below.

Children and Social Work Bill - Latest Update

The Children and Social Work Bill is now being considered by the House of Commons. It had its 2nd Reading on 5th December 2016 and is currently being considered through the committee stage, which is when most amendments and debate on the details will take place. This stage is scheduled to finish by 17th January 2017, following which guidance and implementation will be developed through to 2018. AILC will be submitting its views to MPs over the next few weeks and working with other national stakeholders to ensure that the Bill does not weaken the fundamentals of strong multi-agency working: obligations on all partnerships; independent scrutiny and challenge; adequate authority and resource to fulfil the functions required. 

LSCBs may wish to submit their own comments on the Bill if they have views about abolition of LSCBs, or ANY aspect of the Bill. This must be done in the next three weeks. You can submit your comments  here.

ADCS Safeguarding Pressures Phase 5

ADCS Safeguarding Pressures research has provided evidence of trends in safeguarding activity and the provision of services to children and their families in five phases spanning 2007/8 to 2015/16. Through each phase, significant increases in safeguarding activity have been reported together with the range of contributing factors, including austerity. Phase 5, consisting of a main report and two special thematic reports on early help (to be published in early 2017) and unaccompanied asylum seeking and refugee children brings the evidence base up to date in the current context in which children’s services are operating. Click here to read the executive summary and full report.
 View Safeguarding Pressures Phase 5 – Report
 View Safeguarding Pressures Phase 5 – Executive Summary

Government Review

The latest AILC publication in relation to the Government Review of LSCBs is available to Members only. This is a PowerPoint presentation, produced by the Association, on the Government Review for LSCBs, for use with their Boards. We hope you find this useful. The content of this presentation will continue to be updated as the Children and Social Work Bill continues its progress through Parliament. The Version and date of update will be identified.
Latest version is V3-17/11/2016  

  Access to Presentation  

AILC Annual Report Published

In the five years since AILC launched it has become a recognised partner in the national dialogue about safeguarding children.  We have shaped our vision for effective safeguarding arrangements. Read more here


AILC Annual Report  

LSCBs: Learning & Improvement Processes

The NSPCC carried out a study of Local Safeguarding Children Boards (LSCBs) in England and Wales to explore their learning and improvement processes and experiences.  They interviewed business managers from 12 LSCBs about how they identify learning opportunities and drive improvement. This report discusses the findings of the research, with practice examples. It includes a review of the literature on learning and improvement within the child protection system.

This research is relevant in light of the government's response to Alan Wood's independent review of the role and functions of LSCBs in England, which was published in May 2016. You can download the report here.

Ofsted Analysis

AILC publishes its 5th Review of Ofsted Inspection Reports.  Due to the findings of this Analysis, AILC has made this report available to all and can be downloaded below.  This report forms part of continuing Ofsted Analysis, a Members resource. (Found under Policy on the website).   AILC also released a press statement - "‘The Inspections covered in this report show that Independent Chairs are a critical component of the leadership coalition that is required to deliver success" Stated David Ashcroft, Vice Chair of AILC - read the full press release here.