Ofsted chief: Inspection came too soon for Haringey

Senior Ofsted inspectors were reluctant to carry out the six-month progress report on safeguarding in Haringey, published last week, as they felt agencies needed more time to carry out improvements.

In a letter to children’s secretary Ed Balls, Ofsted chief inspector Christine Gilbert said officials had “queried the short time scale” given to Haringey since the emergency joint area review last November.

The JAR found serious failings in the management, oversight and practice of safeguarding services, prompting Balls to ask Ofsted and fellow inspectorates for “early reassurance” that progress was being made.

“Given the inadequacy of services in Haringey, inspectors felt more time would be needed before real change could be seen. This has proved to be the case,” Gilbert wrote in her letter to Balls, published alongside last week’s report.

Balls accepted Gilbert’s proposal that there should be no further inspection of agencies in Haringey before January 2010, confirming he would then decide whether more action was needed.

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