Doncaster’s child safeguarding services are making significant progress, Ofsted has found following an unannounced inspection.
Inspectors – who looked at the quality of safeguarding contact, referral and assessment services and their impact on reducing abuse and neglect – found major improvements at the council’s troubled children’s services department.
The authority was praised for improvements in areas which had received strong criticism from inspectors in the past.
Social workers were found to have manageable caseloads, while managers were found to be effectively supporting staff, who were suitably qualified and experienced in safeguarding.
Child protection enquiries highlighted effective multi-agency strategy meetings and good information sharing, Ofsted found.
The authority also set up the children’s multi-agency referral and assessment service, believed to have helped drive a number of the improvements.
Under the initiative, child protection workers from key agencies, including the council, police and health, work together under one roof.
Chris Pratt, Doncaster’s director for children’s services, said: “As a service we have made great improvements in the last couple of years and are far more effective now than previously.
“Our managers and staff have worked tirelessly to make these improvements and I am very grateful to and proud of them and what they have achieved.
“We are committed to continuously improving our services and will not stop until we have implemented all further recommendations.”
A major overhaul of Doncaster Council children’s services was ordered by the government on 12 March 2009 after inspectors identified “serious weaknesses” in performance.
- Don’t miss your chance to quiz Ofsted deputy chief inspector John Goldup about any aspect of children’s services inspection live from 7-8pm tomorrow.
Join Ofsted deputy chief John Goldup for a live chat tomorrow