Significant progress made in Children’s Services says Ofsted
In the first line of its inspection report, published today, Ofsted recognise the significant progress the council has made in many areas of its children’s services.
The report goes on to highlight the relentless drive for improvement and significant financial investment made by the council, which has resulted in children being better protected.
Inspectors also commend social workers for their passion in achieving the best for children they support and how generally a more stable workforce is helping to deliver better support for children and young people.
The council’s social work academy, another area of strength identified by inspectors, will support the council in delivering a strong, effective workforce for years to come.
Cllr Stephen Davies, cabinet member for children and young people at Gloucestershire County Council, said: “This is a report we can be proud of. More importantly, it is a report that clearly states children and families in this county are better supported and better protected. I want to thank our staff, our partners and everyone else who has worked to achieve the significant improvements recognised today by Ofsted.
“We know we still have work to do to get to where we want to be; inspectors have highlighted key areas in their report. Addressing these areas will be our focus for the coming months and years.
“We’ve got what it takes to be rated GOOD by Ofsted and I have no doubt we will get there – the children, young people and families of this county deserve it.”
Chris Spencer Executive Director for children and young people services said: “I want to say a big thank you to the many dedicated and passionate staff we have working with children and families in this county. It is largely down to their efforts and drive that we have been able to achieve the level of improvement set out in Ofsted’s report today.
“In the face of a global pandemic such positive outcomes are even more special and, whilst there is still more to be done, we can be proud of the significant progress we have made.”
Richard Boyles, the previous cabinet member with responsibility for children services said: “This is a positive report that social workers, senior officers and politicians should all be really proud of. It has taken time, commitment, and significant investment but I was always confident we had what it took to make the necessary improvements and better support the children and families of Gloucestershire.
“This journey was made during one of the most difficult times in our country’s recent history and I would personally like to thank the Director of children's services Chris Spencer for his leadership and all the staff I met that made the real changes required on the front line to protect children.”
Lesley Williams, an original member of the Children’s Services Improvement Board said: “I am extremely pleased to see the significant improvements that have been achieved since 2017. The children and families of Gloucestershire deserved better and now they are getting it. This positive report must not lead to a reduced focus on making further progress. Everyone involved must remain committed to going from strength to strength.”
The council has recently had a series of GOOD Ofsted judgements relating to its short break centre, alternative provision school and Adoption West.
A copy of the report can be found on the Ofsted site here