Kisimul opened review into ‘procedures and protocols’ after police probe

Kisimul special school boarding home is undertaking an independently-led internal review at its Swinderby site after police investigated safeguarding concerns.

The school also told reporters that is has suspended some members of staff.

Lincolnshire Police previously concluded its own investigation into the overnight boarding home in Swinderby, dubbed Operation Hendon, stating there would be no criminal charges.

Ofsted initially suspended the registration of the children’s boarding home in November 2018 before lifting the suspension in January 2019.

Kisimul’s internal review has been ongoing following the conclusion of the police investigation.

Kisimul revealed to The Lincolnite on Wednesday, September 11 that it is taking “the necessary steps, including staff suspensions and changes where necessary”. However it is unclear how many staff have been and/or will be suspended and the exact reasons for it.

A Kisimul Senior Director said: “We are undertaking an independently-led, internal review to ensure all our procedures and protocols are as robust as possible. We are taking the necessary steps, including staff suspensions and changes where necessary, to ensure we are providing high quality care to our children and young people.

“We are continuing to work with Ofsted, local authorities and social workers to ensure all our children and young people receive the care and support they need.”

Inspectors previously found “serious and widespread failures” at the Swinderby site, which meant that 55 vulnerable children living there were not protected and safeguarded.

Ofsted produced a scathing report, which was published on July 12, and at the time ruled the home as ‘Inadequate’ at protecting children and for the effectiveness of management.

Two staff suspended at separate site

In what Kisimul said is an unrelated matter, two staff at a house in South Hykeham – Tigh Coilean – were suspended and are being dealt with in an internal investigation. The six bedroom house is located on Thorpe Lane and is run by Kisimul Group Limited.

However, Kisimul would not confirm when or why the suspensions happened.

A Kisimul Senior Director previously said: “As a result of an internal disciplinary matter, two members of staff at Tigh Coilean have been suspended. This issue is being handled according to our normal disciplinary procedures.

“The safety and wellbeing of the adults in our care is our absolute priority. We are committed to delivering high quality education, care and support for all the adults we worth with.”

CQC confirmed that a safeguarding investigation is ongoing in relation to Tigh Coilean and it is liaising with the local authority safeguarding team.

The safeguarding team said they are satisfied that action has been taken by the provider to protect residents. Enquiries are ongoing.

A spokesperson for CQC said: “CQC is aware of an incident at Tigh Coilean in Lincoln and that action has been taken by the provider to protect residents.

“A safeguarding investigation is ongoing. We await the outcome of this. We are liaising with the local authority safeguarding team.”

Linda MacDonnell, Head of Adult Safeguarding at Lincolnshire County Council, said: “We can confirm that the Adult Safeguarding Team are aware of the concerns raised and are working alongside Tigh Coilean in South Hykeham to make safeguarding enquiries related to this matter.

“We can’t provide further comment on individual cases but are satisfied that action has been taken by the provider to protect residents, whilst enquiries are ongoing. Lincolnshire County Council work with a number of agencies, including the Care Quality Commission, to monitor the quality of care provision in Lincolnshire to make sure vulnerable people are safe and well cared for.”

A spokesperson for Lincolnshire Police added: “We are aware of concerns raised relating to Tigh Coilean, in South Hykeham.

“We are in contact with the local safeguarding team. Currently we are not investigating any possible offences.”