North Lincolnshire Council’s children’s services have been rated as outstanding by Ofsted inspectors.
The council has been awarded the highest accolade for providing services for children in need of help and protection – one of only three in the country to achieve this.
Ofsted inspectors visited the authority between June 20 and July 13 this year.
Inspectors said: “North Lincolnshire Council has impressively sustained good and outstanding services for children and families since the last Ofsted inspection in 2012.”
Below are some of the findings:
- Services to children – outstanding
- Children who need help and protection – good
- Children looked after and achieving permanence – outstanding
- Adoption performance – outstanding
- Experiences and progress of care leavers – outstanding
- Leadership, management and governance – outstanding
- Local Safeguarding Children’s Board – outstanding
Other key findings include:
- Effective direct work undertaken by a well-trained and stable workforce ensures that children are engaged fully and this leads to measurably improved outcomes
- Highly effective and principled leadership clearly models and articulates ambition for children in North Lincolnshire
- Very effective and coordinated partnership working at both a strategic and operational level.
- Continually exceptional leadership for children’s services
- The voice and views of children and young people are effectively sought and considered
- The local authority is hugely ambitious and aspirational for care leavers and their views are central to development
Leader of North Lincolnshire Council, Councillor Rob Waltham, said: “To be one of only a few councils in England to achieve outstanding is incredible.
“We make children our business; they are at the heart of what we do and our number one priority.
“We are absolutely committed to ensuring they achieve the very best and at the same time are safe, protected and supported.
“We invest heavily to give them the best chance in life from excellent foster carers and adopters who make a real difference to our children in care.
“We have excellent early years’ provision, from new play areas and free swimming to new school buildings, education and learning and outstanding services to our most vulnerable children.
“We should give all children the chance and support to reach their full potential in life. It doesn’t matter who they are or where they come from, we treat everyone the same.”
Councillor David Rose, cabinet member for children, learning and families, said: “Besides the excellent work we do to support children, we also support families too, who need that extra bit of help.
“We take children and young people’s views seriously and look for ways to involve them in key decisions, for example, through the excellent work of the Youth and children in Care Council.
“Our children are keen to work with us to improve services and we listen.”
Denise Hyde, head of paid service and executive director, people and transformation at North Lincolnshire Council, said: “We strive to provide the best services to enable people to live independently, with their families and their communities.
“Everyone has worked really hard and deserves recognition for their contribution to helping to keep our children safe and ensuring they achieve well.
Mick Gibbs, director of children and community resilience at North Lincolnshire Council, said: “In North Lincolnshire, we work together with partner agencies – police, health, education and with foster carers, adopters and others to improve outcomes for children: to keep them safe, well and help them reach their potential.
“We have placed the child at the heart of what we do and listen to their voice.
Edwina Harrison, independent chair of the North Lincolnshire Safeguarding Children Board, said: “The work of the Local Safeguarding Children’s Board is second to none.
“It does everything and more that a safeguarding board should, and most importantly it puts children at the centre of everything that we do.
“I am delighted that our work has been recognised as it reflects the longstanding commitment to children involving years of hard work with full contribution from all partners.
“We will continue the good work to ensure every child and young person is safe and protected.”