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Children's Services tick OFSTED boxes

Top ranking in 'tough times'

Published on November 8th 2011.


Children's Services tick OFSTED boxes

LIVERPOOL’S Children’s Services department has received a gold star from the government’s independent regulator for education and care.

For the first time ever, the annual OFSTED judgment has given the council the top ranking of four out of four. 

The inspectors have noted that there has been a “notable improvement” compared to 2010, reporting that the city council has “built upon its established strengths and there has been good progress in the areas for development”. 

There is praise for the work to keep the most vulnerable youngsters free from harm – known as  safeguarding and looked after children services - which were found to be “good with outstanding features” during an inspection earlier this year. 

OFSTED say that leadership is strong and there is an “ongoing commitment to children’s services, ensuring safeguarding is a high priority”.

Around three quarters of the 167 schools are ranked as good or outstanding by OFSTED and Liverpool is the only major city to have no schools in special measures.

 And education results are at an all time high – with 86.5 percent of pupils in Liverpool getting five good grades and, significantly, the number getting five good grade including English and Maths at the national average for the first time ever.

Councillor Jane Corbett, cabinet member for education and children’s services, said:

This is an incredible result when you consider the fact we are the most deprived city in the country with all of the additional challenges that brings.

 “Despite the tough and difficult budget decisions that we are having to make, we are determined to prioritise services for children and young people to make sure they are protected.

For the previous five years, children’s services was ranked as ‘performing well’ - and the move up to ‘excellent’ is significant as there was a toughening of the inspection regime in the wake of the Baby Peter case.

Also singled out for praise in the assessment are:

•       The city council’s four children’s homes

•       The adoption service

•       The improvement in GCSE results for pupils from low income families

Areas identified for further improvement include the progress made by children in Early Year’s Foundation Stage and those schools and other establishments which are ranked as satisfactory.  

The city is also ranked as ‘excellent’ for adult care by the Care Quality Commission.

 

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