Councils have called for Ofsted annual inspections to be scrapped following the announcement yesterday by care minister Paul Burstow that similar inspections for adult social care would be scrapped.
David Parsons, chairman of the local government group’s improvement board, said: “The scrapping of the annual assessment of adult care is a positive step towards the common sense inspection approach which councils have been arguing for. The next logical step is to get rid of the equivalent assessments of children’s services carried out by Ofsted.
“At a time when public money is under massive pressure, councils should not be forced to spend money ticking boxes when that funding could be spent instead on frontline services.”
Questioned on the issue at the National Children and Adult Services Conference in Manchester, children’s minister Tim Loughton said he shared the reservations about Ofsted’s ability to inspect children’s social care.
“There are key things, perhaps fewer than now, that it can do. There are some things that I think are important but that Ofsted does not inspect at the moment such as joint training on safeguarding. We are looking at these issues and also the Munro review is looking at these issues.”
Later he also agreed that Ofsted inspections should be contructive rather than seen as a big stick.
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