Ofsted ‘complacent on child protection’
The chairman of a Commons committee has said he has “lost confidence” in the inspectorate Ofsted over its handling of children’s services in Haringey, the north London borough where Baby P died.
Barry Sheerman made the statement after questioning Christine Gilbert, the chief inspector of schools, at the children, schools and families committee yesterday
Read more on this story in The Guardian
Labour to tighten rules on benefits
Far-reaching plans to tighten welfare benefits were unveiled yesterday, although some of the proposals have been tempered by a lack of resources, the need to pilot the proposals on the ground and fears of a backbench rebellion.
The work and pensions secretary, James Purnell, set out the heavily-trailed proposals, designed to increase the requirements on lone parents and those on incapacity benefit to prepare for work, as well as to give the private sector a bigger role in finding work for the unemployed.
Parents who helped son die tell of relief at inquest verdict
The parents of a former rugby player who killed himself in a Swiss euthanasia clinic said yesterday that they were “relieved” not to be facing charges over his death after an inquest recorded a verdict of suicide.
Childcare bad for babies, working parents warned
Parents and governments are taking a “high-stakes gamble” with the long-term wellbeing of children by subjecting them to long hours of formal childcare from a very young age, according to a Unicef report.
The study, which has prompted Beverley Hughes, the Children’s Minister, to complain to the UN agency, recommends that all children should where possible be cared for by parents at home during the first 12 months of life.
Number of failing nurseries doubles in poor areas
Today’s warning from Unicef that poor children may be receiving the worst childcare is backed up by new figures on the quality of nurseries in deprived areas.
They show that the number of failing nurseries in the poorest areas of England has almost doubled in the past year.
Read more on this story in The Times
Pensioners should be given a tax cut on savings
Nine million pensioners should be given a tax cut on their savings and investments as their retirement nest-eggs dwindle in the economic crisis, a coalition of MPs and charities urges today.
Read more on this story in The Daily Telegraph