Childrens services

  • NCASC: Government must make 'some difficult decisions' on children's services

    29 November 2023

    The Government must make ‘some difficult decisions’ if it is ‘not able or willing’ to provide funding to meet the financial pressures in children’s services, the Association of Directors of Children’s Services has said.

  • Partnerships will unlock potential of Oxfordshire’s children

    28 November 2023

    Children and young people are at the heart of Oxfordshire’s partnership approach – a shared vision to give them the very best start in life, says Cllr John Howson.

  • Who wouldn’t want to be a DCS?

    27 November 2023

    As directors of children’s services gather at the National Children and Adult Services Conference, Philip Emms and Jane Parfrement reflect on the achievements of the aspirant DCS programme

  • Autumn Statement: not what it says on the tin

    24 November 2023

    Kate Ogden says it seems likely either taxes will have to rise further, borrowing will have to rise, or the range and quality of public services provided will have to fall.

  • A tactical shift that has boosted our services

    18 October 2023

    Angela Bremner explains how leadership coaching has transformed Together for Children’s people services and led to the creation of a new performance management programme for the company.

  • UASC children deserve a plan

    09 October 2023

    Meeting the needs of unaccompanied asylum seeking children calls for the development of a co-ordinated plan over the short, medium and longer-term, says John Pearce

  • Mental health top reason for social care absences

    20 September 2023

    New research has claimed mental health and stress is the most common reason for social care staff sickness and absence in more than 77% of councils.

  • Children and young people in care are at risk of becoming invisible

    05 September 2023

    The Government must 'urgently look at ways to find more funding for children’s care and safeguarding, that will allow us to change the system', says Michael Hudson.

  • Virtual schools: expanding a hidden asset

    04 September 2023

    A recent report from the County Councils' Network explores the development of virtual schools over the last decade. Owen Mapley says councils should consider how they can be used to drive improvement and educational excellence.

  • Working to help children’s services in Essex grow

    04 September 2023

    Essex CC has achieved a second consecutive ‘Outstanding’ Ofsted rating for children’s social care. Helen Lincoln explains some of the key reasons for the service’s success.

  • Pioneering a new approach to children’s social care in Somerset

    22 August 2023

    A new partnership in Somerset is supporting the county’s most complex looked-after children and could improve outcomes across the UK, say Claire Winter and Chris Luck.

  • Optimistic nihilism

    04 July 2023

    It feels like local government is close to breaking point, but it doesn’t have to be this way, says Dr Jonathan Carr-West.

  • We need a national placements strategy

    19 June 2023

    Councils are using non-secure provisions supported by a deprivation of liberty order as necessary when secure welfare placements are not available, but as John Pearce says, the system needs to be developed to meet children’s needs.

  • Starting a new chapter

    19 June 2023

    The aim of Foundations – the new national What Works Centre for Children and Families – is to produce and champion evidence that improves services to support families, says Dr Jo Casebourne.

  • Putting families first in Herts

    10 May 2023

    Hertfordshire CC’s Families First approach has secured a host of achievements and cost benefits, and helped to inform the development of one element in the Government’s response to the McAlister review, says Karen Dorney.

  • Haringey’s watershed moment

    10 May 2023

    Ann Graham says a number of crucial elements including a steady change in culture have combined to help Haringey LBC achieve its first ‘good’ Ofsted rating.

  • New ADCS chief calls for cross-government children's plan

    18 April 2023

    The new president of the Association of Directors of Children’s Services (ADCS) has reiterated his organisation’s previous calls for a cross-government ‘ambitious strategic plan’ for children.

  • A life to outlast us

    12 April 2023

    The idea of leaving a legacy can mean very different things. Three speakers outlined their experiences at a joint GatenbySanderson and The MJ round table in Manchester. Heather Jameson reports.

  • Groundhog Day for adult social care reform

    06 April 2023

    Sarah McClinton, President of the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services, explains what the Government stalling on social care reform will mean for older and disabled people and carers.

  • Neglect and the perfect storm

    07 March 2023

    Assessing the care given to a child against the yardstick of a ‘reasonable parent’ involves considering the impact of the financial crisis on the family and the practical support available, says Jo Porter.