The government is to appoint an adoption tsar, Community Care has learned.
Sources say former Barnardo’s chief Martin Narey is a likely candidate.
It is understood that Narey has been working closely with ministers from the Department for Education and a national newspaper to produce a special report on adoption, to be published in the paper imminently.
Narey, who stepped down from his post at Barnardo’s in January, is also set to review Kent Council’s adoption services after Ofsted rated them inadequate. The council has asked Narey to help significantly increase adoption rates.
He will begin his work this month and report back to the council with his findings in the autumn.
In January Narey said rates nationally needed to double within three years.
The Department for Education has refused to confirm or deny whether an adoption tsar will be appointed. But sources say the appointment of a high-profile name fits with the coalition’s political agenda.
“There has been an increased focus on adoption recently, with the government working very closely with the media to promote adoption,” a source told Community Care. “There is a clear desire to boost adoption rates for children in care and we expect an announcement fairly soon.”
In February education secretary Michael Gove – who was adopted as a baby himself –
and children’s minister Tim Loughton launched updated adoption guidance intended to remove barriers to successful adoptions for children in care.
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