The government has confirmed that an independent children’s
commissioner for England is to be appointed, writes Amy
A department for education and skills spokesperson said that
there would be an independent children’s commissioner, but refused
to comment further as the government has not yet made a formal
Northern Ireland and Wales have already got children’s
commissioners and Scotland is in the process of appointing one.
The government has also confirmed that the inspection of
children’s social services is to stay in the Social Services
Inspectorate in the department of health, despite children’s social
services moving to the department for education and skills.
Other children’s services in the DfES, such as early years and
childcare, are inspected by education watchdog Ofsted.
A doh spokesperson said that the inspection of children’s social
services would move with the SSI when it became part of the
Commission for Social Care Inspection in April 2004.
Paul Ennals, chief executive of the National Children’s Bureau,
said that the inspection of children’s services needs to be looked
at in light of the planned changes in government responsibilities –
such as the creation of the CSCI and the Commission for Health Care
Audit and Inspection, both due to be operational by April 2004.
“With all these changes we need creative thinking about the way
children’s services are inspected,” he said.