Ofsted ‘not good enough’ to protect children
The competence of Ofsted to inspect children’s services and help to protect young people from abuse and neglect has been challenged by the Government’s child protection chief.
Sir Roger Singleton used his first interview in the post to warn ministers that too many Ofsted staff lacked the skill and experience to hold social workers to account and drive up standards. If matters did not improve and inspectors failed to win the respect of social workers it would be “all too easy” for their judgments and recommendations to be ignored, he warned.
Read more on this story in The TimesOfsted inspectors ‘fobbed off too easily’
For new Labour, Ofsted was always more than just a schools inspectorate. It was an article of faith, key to standards and convincing voters that the party was not soft on teachers.
So when councils merged their education and children’s social services departments in 2004, ministers thought it made sense for Ofsted to inspect the whole lot. As well as dealing with schools, it now has responsibility for children’s social workers, children’s homes, the court service Cafcass (Children & Families Court Advisory and Support Service), nurseries and thousands of childminders.
Trevor Phillips has made equalities commission ‘a laughing stock’
Trevor Phillips, the head of the Equalities watchdog, faces two Commons investigations after a leading disabilities campaigner said that he had turned it into a “laughing stock”.
Coroner blames cut-price alcohol for soaring number of drink deaths
A coroner has hit out at Britain’s binge-drinking culture after presiding over a run of inquests into alcohol-linked deaths.
William Armstrong said alcohol is now a major public health problem.
Read more on this story in The Daily Mail
Nursery worker accused of kid porn faces court
A nursery worker accused of making child porn allegedly involving the tots she worked with has appeared in court.
Vanessa George, 39, sat in silence with her head bowed during the 30-minute hearing – watched by 20 parents in the public gallery.