The Protection of Children in England: A Progress Report (the Laming report) 2009 – This document, and its recommendations, are aimed at making sure that good practice becomes standard practice in every service. This includes recommendations on improving the inspection of safeguarding services and the quality of Serious Case Reviews as well as recommendations on improving the help and support children receive when they are at risk of harm.
Care Matters, Time for Change 2007 – This White Paper builds on responses to the Green Paper Care Matters 2006 and the conclusions of four working groups established to investigate best practice in supporting those in care. Working in partnership with local government, the voluntary and private sectors and the wider children's workforce, the government intends to deliver the White Paper to ensure a lasting change for children and young people in care.
Youth Matters: Next Steps 2006 – Summarises the responses the government received to the Youth Matters Green Paper 2005. The Next Steps response highlights the need for better support for families, more youth-friendly and accessible health services, and greater access to sports, culture and the arts.
The Education and Inspections Act 2006 – This Act changes inspection arrangements for services relating to children, young people and adult learners. The Act creates an enhanced Ofsted as part of the government’s public services reform strategy, which aims to reduce the number of public sector inspectorates in order to reduce and avoid duplication.
From April 2007, the inspection of children’s social care (part of CSCI), the Adult Learning Inspectorate, and HMI of Court Administration (which inspects the Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service) will be incorporated into Ofsted. Although still known as Ofsted, the full title of the enhanced single inspectorate for children and learners is the Office for Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills.
The new Ofsted will regulate, as necessary, and inspect: all childcare providers; fostering and adoption agencies and children’s homes; the Children and Family Courts Advisory and Support Service; all state maintained and some independent schools; further education providers; initial teacher training providers; all publicly funded and some privately funded adult education and training; and children’s services provided by local authorities, both those provided by the council and those provided through partnership activities with other agencies.
Care Matters 2006 – A government Green Paper that sets out proposals for improving outcomes for looked after children, including children on the edge of care, the role of corporate parenting, better placements, better education, life outside of school and transition to adult life.
Statutory guidance on positive activities – This statutory guidance has followed the Education and Inspections Act 2006. The guidance is broad and requires that a local authority in England, must so far as reasonably practicable, secure for qualifying young persons in the authority’s area: sufficient educational leisure-time activities to improve their well-being, and sufficient facilities for such activities; and sufficient recreational leisure-time activities to improve their well-being, and sufficient facilities for such activities.
Strong and Prosperous Communities 2006 – A government White Paper which outlines proposals to place greater responsibility on local authorities and their partners to drive improvements in outcomes in their areas and be responsive and accountable to their citizens. This means that children’ services joint area review and annual performance assessment will not continue after December 2008. The changes outlined in the White Paper propose a risk assessment that will trigger additional inspection only where the risks of areas not delivering improved outcomes for their citizens are greatest.
14-19 Education and Skills 2005 – A government White Paper which outlines how all young people should be entitled to access education that has: a greater focus on 3Rs; stronger vocational routes; more stretching options, with a flexibility for young people to accelerate through the system; and ways of tackling disengagement to ensure that those in danger of dropping out can be motivated to stay in learning.
Youth Matters 2005 – A government Green Paper which outlines how young people should have: more choice and influence over services and facilities that are available to them; more accessible and flexible information, advice and guidance; and better targeted support for young people experiencing difficulties.
Every Child Matters: Next Steps 2004 – Summarises the response to the government received to the Every Child Matters 2003 Green Paper. The ‘Next Steps’ response strongly endorsed the aims of the Green Paper, including: having fewer and more coherent national standards and targets; rationalising funding streams and plans; and developing an integrated inspection framework.
Children Act 2004 – Alongside the ‘Next Steps’ response, the government passed the Children Act 2004, which provided the legislative foundation for developing more effective and accessible services focused around the needs of children, young people and families. The Act included a requirement for Ofsted to co-ordinate the response from relevant inspectorates / commissions to their new duty to collaborate in the inspection of services relating to the well-being of children and young people at the local level.
A new framework for the inspection of children’s services was developed, based on the five outcomes identified in the government’s 2003 Green Paper.
Every Child Matters: Change for Children 2004 – Published by the government, it outlines a framework of national and local priorities for children’s services. The framework covers: the five outcomes identified in the government’s 2003 Green Paper; integrated universal services; targeted and specialist services; a skilled and effective workforce; a common assessment framework (CAF, which is a common national process for early assessment to identify more accurately and speedily the additional needs of children and young people); joint commissioning; budget pooling; needs analysis and planning. The Change for Children framework aligns to the National Service Framework for Children, Young People and Maternity Services.
The National Service Framework for Children, Young People and Maternity Services 2004 – Published by Department of Health. The NSF sets standards for children’s health, social services and the interface of those services with education. It aims to lead a fundamental change in thinking about health and social services, resulting in services being developed and delivered around the needs of children and families.
Every Child Matters 2003 – A government Green Paper, published alongside the government’s formal response to the Victoria Climbé inquiry. The paper focused on: supporting parents and carers; early intervention and effective protection; local, regional and national accountability and integration; and workforce reform. The paper also defined the five most important outcomes to help children and young people achieve their potential: being healthy, staying safe, enjoying and achievement, making a positive contribution and achieving economic well-being
The Victoria Climbé Inquiry February 2001 – An independent statutory inquiry to investigate the circumstances leading to the death of Victoria Climbé and to provide a set of recommendations to prevent such a tragedy happening again