Keeping Devon’s children safe – February-March 2016 update
Key management messages
Good news – DCC has received a letter from Minister Edward Timpson informing us that the Department for Education has lifted the intervention notice and is ending formal intervention arrangements in Devon. We will shortly write to you with more detail about the letter and what this means for our continued work to improve things for children in Devon, but for now we wanted to share this good news with you and thank all of you for your hard work in making this happen.
And, we are pleased to announce that, following a recruitment process, the new interim Head of Children’s Social Work has been appointed.
Jo has asked us to pass on this personal message to you all.
We know that you will join us in welcoming Jo, and in thanking Fiona for her commitment to Children’s Social Work in Devon over the past two years, particularly leading the service through last year’s Ofsted inspection. We wish Fiona all the best for the future.
A picture paints a thousand words
Celebrating the rights of the child
On the 27 January 2016, a group of seven young people came together with Jennie Stephens and Cllr James McInnes to celebrate the right of children and young people to express their views and have a say in matters that affect them. The occasion for the celebration was that a beautiful painting, which represents this principle, has been hung behind Jennie’s desk.
Jennie and James used the event as a good opportunity to hear from the young people. Unsurprisingly, they had a lot to say and Jennie and James would like to share these important messages from the young people with you.
New Belongings Project
The aim is for us, as a local authority, is to improve our services for care leavers by applying the experience and expertise of care leavers themselves to drive change to ensure their specific needs are met. Our main objectives are
In February, a team from New Belongings visited Devon to assess our progress. In doing so, they worked closely with care leavers, senior managers, managers in Permanence and Transition Teams and the Participation Team. They were impressed with our progress and Liz Lydon , the project lead, made the following observation:
“You have done so well. The way you have embraced the care leaver apprentices and interns into your overall service is inspiring.” Find out more.
Virtual School for Children in Care update
Devon’s Virtual School for Children in Care is now producing their own half-termly newsletter. And this term there are several events in March; the taster day at Exeter University, and our Children in Care Celebration Event on 18 March.
Children Centres update – intention and timescales
Since the procurement of a new service in North Devon and Torridge (May 2015) and South and West Devon (April 2016) the Public Health Nursing Service is due to transfer from NHS England into the local authority in October 2016. This now gives us the opportunity to reflect on current contracts and look at the potential opportunities it may give to develop a joint commissioning specification, which could provide a seamless Early Help and Prevention Service.
Health Visiting Services for Devon Residents
As you will be aware, commissioning responsibility for Health Visiting Services transferred from NHS England to local authorities from 1st October 2015.
Nationally, one of the implications of this change is that local authorities will be funded to commission Health Visiting Services for local residents based on where they live, rather than where they are registered with GPs, as was previously the case.
Have you taken part in the prevent agenda training yet?
We are providing mandatory training on the prevent agenda and all staff within children’s social work and child protection are required to attend. We have organised the delivery of sessions over one day in each of the service geographical areas, with each session taking approx. one hour.
We are offering the workshops as part of Home Office programme. The aim is to prevent vulnerable people from being drawn into terrorism.
Child abuse campaign
Together, we can tackle child abuse. This is one of a number of key messages that Devon County Council will be sharing in support of a national Department for Education campaign to raise awareness of child abuse and encourage more reporting from the general public. Find out more.
We are encouraging anyone worried about a child or suspecting child abuse or neglect, to visit
Resources and Publications
Launch of Tri-X South West Procedures Online
We are very pleased to announce the re-launch of the South-West Child Protection procedures online.
Find out more within the Devon Safeguarding Children Board update
And don’t forget you can sign up to receive tri.x newsletters like this one. In their latest issue briefings include:
HCPC revised Standards of conduct, performance and ethics
This special edition of Health and Care Professionals Council (HCPC) ‘In Focus’ takes an in depth look at their revised Standards of conduct, performance and ethics, which were published on 26 January 2016.
Learning Curve update
In the latest edition, find out about three new and improved courses from our Performance Development Team including:
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