Cabinet considered a report of the Director of Children’s Services regarding the recent Ofsted ILACS inspection and the improvement support work being offered to the region.
The report was introduced and it was noted that the outcome of the inspection was that Hampshire’s Children’s Services department was now rated as outstanding across all areas. Key highlights included the endorsement of the department’s investment strategy, the high quality social work carried out by the department and the quality of early help services.
Cabinet welcomed the report, acknowledging the achievement of the department and the important role of social workers in the community. In particular the success of early help services to replace children’s centres was welcomed. Pro-active plans to sustain the outstanding performance, including through work with local universities were outlined.
With the agreement of the Leader, Councillor House addressed Cabinet, welcoming the report and agreeing that the achievements should be celebrated. He highlighted a minor concern about support for other authorities, agreeing with the principle of doing so but questioning whether there was sufficient spare capacity.
Cabinet acknowledged the importance of having capacity to take on additional support within the sector and it was noted that an update had been received by the Employment in Hampshire County Council Committee confirming that this work could be done without detriment to Hampshire.
The recommendations in the report were agreed. A decision record is attached to these minutes.