CSCI dismisses single inspectorate plans as a missed opportunity


Current plans for a single inspectorate for children’s services do not go far enough, the Commission for Social Care Inspection has warned.

In its response to the consultation on a single inspectorate for children and learners, which closed this week, the CSCI insisted it would be a missed opportunity to go ahead with plans to exclude the areas of children’s health and welfare from the remit of a new children’s inspectorate.

“If inspection really is to focus on the needs and experiences of children regardless of organisational boundaries, the advantage would lie in establishing an inspectorate with a brief to look across the whole range of public services for children whether or not they are provided or commissioned by local councils and whether or not the national policy responsibility rests with Department for Education and Skills ministers,” said CSCI chair Denise Platt.

She warned that any case for splitting off the CSCI’s current responsibilities to children from those of adults would be “less than compelling” if the government still failed to create a children’s inspectorate which looked at the totality of children’s lives.

“Real though the potential synergies are between inspecting social care and educations services, it would be in out view illogical and dysfunctional to have the new social care and health inspectorate responsibility for children’s health but not for children’s social care,” Platt argued. “It would certainly not help the effective inspection of services against the outcomes specified in the children’s National Service Framework standards.”

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