Ofsted update – July 2013

Following on from Ofsted’s inspection of Devon County Council’s arrangements for safeguarding children, I would like to update you on our progress with responding to their report and recommendations.

Work has already begun at pace and we have the ambition and determination to put things right. It is crucial that this momentum is sustained and that a culture of continuous improvement, with the voice of children and young people at its core, is embedded across children’s safeguarding, both within the County Council and in our work with partners.

To achieve this, we are rolling out an Improvement and Action Plan, supported by our Vision for safeguarding children and the future service we are aspiring to. Copies of both (subject to change) are attached for your information.

Our actions are concentrated around five key work stream areas:

–          Quality of Practice

–          Quality Assurance

–          Early Help

–          Devon Safeguarding Children Board

–          Multi agency/Children in Care

There are a large number of incremental improvements necessary to address the Ofsted findings, the much raised expectations of the proposed new inspection framework and just as importantly to move to a service that is working to a rating of at least good.   Setting out the longer term Vision is essential to help guide our teams, colleagues and partners as we navigate what is undoubtedly challenging times and to provide everybody with that wider sense of direction.

As part of our on-going communication to staff we recently held a series of face-to-face briefings where we launched our Vision and Improvement Plan and I have attached a link to the webcast for your information.

I hope you find this update helpful and if you have any queries, particularly about the work we are doing in your area of Devon, then please do not hesitate to contact me.

Kind regards

Councillor William Mumford – Cabinet Member for Children, Schools and Skills