Children’s Services Ofsted Inspection Report

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Ofsted have published their inspection of local authority children’s services (ILACS) report following their full inspection back in March. Ofsted Inspectors have praised West Sussex County Council’s Children’s Services for its ‘relentless approach to improving practice,’ giving the service an overall rating of ‘requires improvement’, with two ‘good’ judgements and two that ‘require improvement to be good’. The key findings from the report include:

  • Most children coming into care make good progress
  • The voice of children and young people is strong and well-considered in decision-making
  • Early Help support is making a positive difference to children’s lives
  • Staff benefit from a wide range of support, and training and development opportunities; and feel valued
  • The implementation of the new Family Safeguarding practice model has been carefully considered with clear plans for the next steps
  • Partnership working is improving, although there is more to do
  • Leaders have been determined to shift the organisational culture and put children first
  • Practice in some teams is variable and more work is needed to ensure all children receive a consistent service
  • The advice and support provided to care leavers aged 21 and over requires improvement
  • Placement choice for children who are looked after requires improvement
  • There needs to be a stronger response to specific children aged 16 and 17 who present as homeless or who are missing from home.