Joint children’s gradings positive

Most councils achieved one of the top two grades for children’s services in the first annual performance assessment covering children’s social care and education.

Ofsted announced that 8 per cent achieved grade 4 and 67 per cent grade 3, with just 1 per cent scoring a grade 1, while 87 per cent scored in the top two grades in terms of their capacity to improve.

Performance was better in education than in children’s social care, with 76 per cent scoring a grade 3 or 4 in the former compared with 65 per cent in the latter.

Knowsley was the best performer among the four beacon councils for integrated children’s services, scoring 4 for both performance and capacity, while Essex, Telford and Wrekin and West Sussex all scored 3 in both categories.

Of authorities with long-standing children’s services departments, Hertfordshire scored 3 for performance and 4 for capacity, and Brighton and Hove 3 in both categories.

Several councils that performed significantly better in education than children’s social services last year saw their scores converge this year.

For instance, Cumbria, which scored 4 for education and 1 for children’s social care services last year, scored 2 for both this year.

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