01/11/2013 Statement from Edward Timpson about the publication of the revised statutory guidance 'Working together to safeguard children'.

Statement to Parliament: Working together to safeguard children
1 November, 2013 at 02:27pm


31/10/2013 Message from Christian Barr - Social Care Policy Team, Ofsted

Dear Colleagues

I’m pleased to announce that, following publication of the single inspection framework in September, the Handbook for the inspection of services for children in need of help and protection, children looked after and care leavers is now available on Ofsted’s website: http://www.ofsted.gov.uk/resources/120218.

We have also published the outcome of the consultation that we ran in June/July 2013 on the single inspection. This report outlines the changes we made to our initial proposals in response to what you told us: http://www.ofsted.gov.uk/resources/130228.

In October we ran a further consultation on the Review of Local Safeguarding Children Boards (LSCBs), which we proposed to conduct at the same time as the single inspection of the local authority. We intend to publish the outcome of this consultation in early November. At the same time, we will re-publish the single inspection framework and handbook with new sections included on the review of the LSCB.

Publishing these documents in two stages allows us to share information with you at the earliest opportunity, but will allow us the time to fully consider the helpful comments we received on this second consultation before publishing the final arrangements.

We will write to you again to confirm when all the final documents are published.

Best wishes

Christian Barr
Policy Officer
Social Care Policy Team
Ofsted / Aviation House / 125 Kingsway / London / WC2B  6SE

Ofsted on Twitter at http://twitter.com/Ofstednews


28/10/2013 Message from Peter Sandiford - Background on Pupil Premium and Adoption

Dear Colleagues

The document below provides background info on the Pupil Premium Plus. The Pupil Premium Plus is the name of pupil premium funding aimed at looked after children. All looked after children, children adopted from care and those who leave care under a Special Guardianship or Residence Order in reception to year 11 classes will attract this extra funding.

20131028 Pupil Pemium Plus

Kind regards
Peter Sandiford


14/06/2013 Message from Julie Holmes - Sent on behalf of Ofsted’s Social Care Inspection Development Team

Dear Colleagues

We are pleased to announce that Ofsted has launched three consultations on arrangements for the inspection of:

  • independent fostering agencies
  • voluntary adoption agencies
  • local authority services for children in need of help and protection, children looked after and care leavers.

Your views are very important to us – please take some time to consider our proposals and contribute your views. Direct links to each of the consultation documents and online surveys are available at the end of this email.

We would be grateful if you could bring these consultations to the attention of any interested parties with whom you work.

Inspection of services for children in need of help and protection, children looked after and care leavers proposes a single framework for inspecting local authority child protection and services for looked after children. The single framework brings together content from the earlier separate consultations on multi-agency child protection arrangements and on services for looked after children. It only seeks views on new proposals not covered in the earlier consultations. Subject to legislative changes that the Department for Education will shortly be consulting on, Ofsted plans to review the effectiveness of the Local Safeguarding Children Board – including making a graded judgement that would not limit the overall effectiveness judgement – at the same time as the single inspection. We propose to combine a report on the effectiveness of the LSCB with our report on the inspection of the local authority. Ofsted will consult further on this after the planned legislative changes have taken effect. Pilot inspections of the proposed single framework are already underway and should be completed in early July.

Good voluntary adoption provision and Good independent fostering provision propose frameworks for inspecting adoption and fostering services not provided by local authorities. Local authority adoption and fostering services will be inspected under the single inspection framework.

All three consultations describe ‘good’ as the minimum standard that children, young people and their families and carers have a right to expect. All the other judgement grades are derived from ‘good’ as the benchmark and the ‘adequate’ judgement is replaced by ‘requires improvement’.

To be judged ‘inadequate’ in any of the key judgement areas will automatically result in an ‘inadequate’ judgement for overall effectiveness.

The three consultations are open from 14 June until 12 July 2013. Please note that if any responses are received after this date we may not be able to take them into account in our final published arrangements for the inspections of these services.

Consultation on arrangements for the inspection of independent fostering agencies


Consultation on arrangements for the inspection of voluntary adoption agencies


Consultation on arrangements for the inspection of local authority services for children in need of help and protection, children looked after and care leavers.


(A summary for children and young people that outlines our plans for the inspection of local authority services is also available at this link.)


03/05/2013 Message from Ruth Wilson - Department for Education

Adoption and fostering publications for release 00.01 Friday 3 May 2013

I am writing to give you an advance copy (under strict embargo until 00.01 3 May 2013) of the following documents that will be published tomorrow.  These are:

Adoption and fostering:  tackling delay

The Adoption Agencies (Miscellaneous Amendment) Regulations 2013 (SI 2013/985) and the Care Planning, Placement and Case Review and Fostering Services (Miscellaneous Amendments) Regulations 2013 (SI 2013/984) will be laid before Parliament w/c 6 May, coming into force on 1 July 2013.  We aim to publish amendments to the adoption, fostering and care planning guidance w/c 6 May.

You will remember that the consultation proposals included the new two-stage adopter and foster carer approval processes, fast-track procedure for adopters and foster carers, requirement to refer the names of children waiting to be placed for adoption and approved prospective adopters to the Adoption Register, making it easier for approved prospective adopters to be temporarily approved as foster carers for named children, sharing of cases records between adoption and fostering agencies and changes to delegated authority.

Delegated authority

There is no requirement to wait until 1 July to implement the changes to delegated authority because there is nothing in current statutory framework that would prevent this.

Adoption Passport

The Adoption Passport will be hosted on the First4Adoption website with a link from the adoption page of the Department for Education’s website.

May we ask BAAF, CVAA and CASA to share the Adoption Passport as widely as possible with prospective adopters and adopters.

A LA email about the above publications will be issued on 8 May.  This will ask local authorities to make immediate use of the Adoption Passport to ensure that prospective adopters and adopters are aware of the help and support available.

Ruth Wilson
Department for Education
020 7783 8071


16/04/2013 Message from Dr Roger Morgan OBE: Children’s Rights Director for England

Ofsted piloting online questionnaires for Adoption Support Agencies

Dear colleague

You will by now have received my recently published children’s views report that has been fed directly into the adoption legislation reforms.

I thought you might be interested to know of another piece of work I am about to undertake, this time on children’s experiences and views of adoption breakdowns.

I am trying to establish whether there are any patterns to adoption breakdowns from the children’s viewpoint, and if so what can be done to prevent this and keep families together.  I am doing this via a secure on-line survey for young people accessible via our website, with the alternative of telephone interviews if that is the young person’s preference.  The survey will run throughout April.

In particular we are seeking views from children and young people who have now returned to care following a breakdown of their adoption, and will cover:-

  • The experience of adoption breakdown
  • Their experiences of returning to care
  • The impact of post adoption support
  • Distance from host LA
  • The role of the LA in accepting the child back into care

As you know there is currently no requirement for local authorities to record adoption breakdowns so there is no way of knowing the exact scale of adoption breakdowns each year.  Therefore, this is an ambitious project but one I feel could be highly illuminating and key to strengthening developing policies around adoption.

I was wondering whether you are aware of any young people who have now returned to care following an adoption breakdown and if so whether you would be willing to distribute an information leaflet about this project to them?

I look forward to hearing from you.

With many thanks

Dr Roger Morgan OBE
Children’s Rights Director for England


23/12/2012 Message from Claire Tackling Ofsted

Ofsted piloting online questionnaires for Adoption Support Agencies

Ofsted have a set of online questionnaires to use with the new inspection framework for Adoption Support Agencies.

There is a questionnaire for:

  • Children and young people
  • Agency Staff
  • Adoptive parents or prospective adopters
  • Birth parents
  • Adults (people 18 years and over) receiving services from an adoption support agency
  • Commissioners and local authority social workers

Agencies should have received the questionnaires via email and they can be completed up until 1 March 2013. As the questionnaires are being piloted to see how well they work for adoption support agencies it is important that agencies are aware of the opportunity to use them.

The timing of these questionnaires is not related to an inspection; they have been sent to all agencies even if the next inspection is in future years. The responses to the questionnaires will be used to inform the next inspection and may also be used to decide if an early inspection is necessary.

The questionnaires are also available as Word documents where people do not have access to the internet and, for children and young people, they are available in some alternative symbol formats (Widgit, Makaton and Picture Communication Symbols).

People can request these by telephoning Ofsted’s National Business Unit on 0300 123 1231 or by emailing at enquiries@ofsted.gov.uk.

If agencies require assistance with questionnaires or a paper copy they can call Ofsted on 0300 123 1231 or email at surveys@ofsted.gov.uk.


11/01/2012 Message from Christine Prickett CVAA UK

Re: Next Meeting of APPG for Adoption and Fostering on Monday 10th December 4.00 - 6.00pm in Committee Room 8

Dear All,

We would like to give you advance notice that the next meeting of the APPG for Adoption and Fostering is planned to take place on Monday 10th December 4.00 - 6.00pm in Committee Room 8.

The focus of this meeting on this occasion is fostering and the topic will be:

Child-centred care planning in times of austerity: Investing in stability

Further details and a full agenda of the meeting will follow shortly.

Please find the minutes and action points from the last meeting on 16th October and the PowerPoint presentation from David Holmes in the 'Files' page of the CASA website Members Area. This will also be available from the CVAA website site www.cvaa.org.uk

Best wishes

Christine Prickett.
Clerk to All Party Parliamentary Group Adoption and Fostering


01/11/2012 Message from Kunu Gordon ASART

Dear All

The CASA meeting on 17 October was attended by Felicity Winter from the DfE who talked to us on the government action plan and the future of adoption support. In the discussion which followed it was mentioned by several CASA members that there were small ASAs that could offer adoption support which the statutary authorities and the large ASAs could not always provide. However, throughout the country there are very few of these. It was thought that a reason for this was that the process of becoming a small ASA was too difficult.

The suggestion was made that we might approach CASA members to find out if they have any ideas for making this easier. Consequently I, as the representative of small ASAs on the CASA committee, am writing to ask you for your in-put on this subject. If you have any ideas please let me know as soon as possible since there is only a short window of opportunity for feeding them back to Felicity.

If you would like to discuss this issue or any other related to ASAs with me, please do not hesitate to email me kunugordon@yahoo.co.uk or call me on 01306 730 044.

Many thanks in advance,

Kunu Gordon


15/10/2012 Welcome to the new CASA website!

The PDF doc. below provides you with a full page breakdown of the new site:

New CASA Website - Page Breakdown

The ‘Directory’ page lists the profiles of all CASA members. The filter options on the left hand side allow the user to select a member based on Advice Line, Region, Services and Training filter options. I used the information you provided in your ASA Questionnaire as well as information from your organisation's website to complete your individual profile.

Your individual profile allows the user to view contact details, email you directly, go straight to your website, view your location via Google Maps and also expand the ‘Show Notes’ link to view additional information about your organisation.

I did my best to make the information as accurate as possible but as not everyone sent back their ASA Questionnaires, logos and training info, it is possible some things may need changing. If you would like anything to be changed on your profile email me (leon@pac.org.uk) with the details you need changing and I will make the changes ASAP.

If you have any links to the old CASA website on your own individual websites can you please make sure the link is directed to www.casa-uk.org to ensure the homepage opens properly.

I hope you all like the new site!

Leon Elias