Issue - meetings


Meeting: 17/01/2022 - Children, Families, Lifelong Learning & Culture Select Committee (Item 6)


Purpose of the report:


This report provides an update on the improvement of Surrey’s children’s services, an overview of our readiness for a full Ofsted ILACS inspection, a summary of the recent Ofsted Monitoring Visit (September 2021) findings/feedback, our response and any impact on our improvement priorities.


Additional documents:



Clare Curran, Cabinet Member for Children and Families


Rachael Wardell, Executive Director – Children, Families and Lifelong Learning

Tina Benjamin, Director – Corporate Parenting

Matt Ansell, Director – Family Resilience and Safeguarding


Key points raised in the discussion:


  1. The Cabinet Member for Children and Families introduced the report and provided context, noting the key challenges within Children’s Services and the Ofsted inspection taking place between  17 and 28 January 2022.


  1. A Member asked why the Corporate Parenting Service was confident, from the work of Creative Solutions, that No Wrong Door (NWD) would be successful. The Executive Director for Children, Families and Lifelong Learning provided an overview of the NWD programme and explained that Creative Solutions was the early work undertaken to think and work differently with young people and families, similar to the approach of NWD. The Director for Corporate Parenting explained that the work of Creative Solutions provided opportunity to train and prepare staff ahead of the introduction of NWD. The North Yorkshire County Council’s NWD accreditation process presented constructive challenge, and this provided reassurance around the success of the model. The Service was well set up in terms of collecting data and understanding the implications of NWD, and colleagues from North Yorkshire County Council would provide support in this area. A Member asked how many of the young people supported by Creative Solutions who did not enter care would have been expected to enter care without that support, and what impact on looked after children numbers was expected of NWD . The Director explained that financial predictions were based on conservative estimates based on data from North Yorkshire County Council’s NWD. Creative Solutions had engaged with 75 children in the last nine months and had finished working with 35 of those children, work with the rest of the children was ongoing. Of this cohort, only two of those children still entered the care system, which was very low compared to figures from previous years.


  1. In response to a question on the first NWD hub, the Director for Corporate Parenting shared that the hub was on track to open in January 2022, a staff restructure had been completed and recruitment to additional posts had taken place, whilst there were a few vacancies still to fill, including foster carers. The Member also asked about the progress of the ‘getting to good’ phase of the children’s improvement programme and inspection readiness. The Executive Director explained that the ongoing Ofsted  inspection of Children’s Services would provide an answer regarding service improvement. The compilation of evidence in preparation for the inspection had illuminated the considerable progress made during the previous phase of improvement between the 2018 inspection and 2020 . The Executive Director stated that significant positive feedback had been received regarding improvement, but acknowledged that there were still areas where the Service needed to improve further in order to receive a grading of Good.


  1. The Member asked about the challenges of engaging educational settings in Graded Care Profile 2 (GCP2) training,  ...  view the full minutes text for item 6