Agenda item - Children's Services Annual Report 2015/16

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Agenda item

Children's Services Annual Report 2015/16

Report of the Executive Director of Children’s Services (copy attached)




1)    The Committee noted the report.


11.1    The Executive Director for Children’s Services introduced the report and explained that it detailed the work of the Children’s Services directorate that had been completed in 2015-16 and it demonstrated the process made towards the four strategic priorities that were set by Committee in July 2015.


11.2    The key challenges and priorities for Children’s Services were outlined to the Committee: the most vulnerable children were not achieving as they should; not fully representative of groups with protected equality characteristics; the number of children subject to child protection plans and the number of children who were in care was high; large increase in demand for mental health services across the city which resulted in causing pressure and increased waiting lists for children, young people and their parents; and the number of young people who are reoffending was too high.


11.3    The Executive Director for Children’s Services explained that the service had received a positive Ofsted report in May 2016 that would be published by the end of June 2016. The service had also received positive feedback from other outside agencies and from children and young people in the city.


11.4    In response to Councillor Brown it was confirmed that the CAMHSs pilot would be extended and evaluated in the next month. The feedback had been very positive and it was hoped that this would be extended to more schools in the city.


11.5    It was explained that the youth review had been completed and a Youth & Employability Trust was to be developed. This was being worked on and legal advice had been sought. It was confirmed that they would have a firm proposal in Autumn 2016 and, it was hoped the trust would be launched in April 2017.


11.6    In response to the Councillors, it was explained that there was a significant gap between underachieving vulnerable children compared to the improvements being made in schools. This problem was to be improved by addressing the difficult circumstances for the child at an early stage to ensure the individual was ready to learn when reaching school age.


11.7    In response to Councillor Taylor it was confirmed that Ethnic Minority Achievement Service (EMAS) was being encouraged in schools to ensure all children were reading by 7 years old.

11.8    Councillor Barradell stated to the Committee that a foster carer had recently had her first annual review and she had previously fostered through an agency. The feedback the Council that had been received was very positive and she was actively encouraging other foster carers to foster through the council rather than an agency.


11.9    Councillor Daniel noted that she would like to see more information regarding the voluntary and community sector working with Children’s Services.


11.10  RESOLVED – That the Committee noted the report.

Supporting documents:


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