The Care Inspectorate carried out an inspection of services for looked after children in 2010 / 11 and in October 2013 a follow-up report was published following a secondary inspection visit.
2010 / 11 inspection
The inspection was commissioned by Jersey’s Children’s Policy Group, which includes the Ministers of Health and Social Services, Education Sports & Culture and Home Affairs.
The inspectors used the same standards used in Scotland to measure how good our services are. Their inspection focused on:
- services provided to children in children’s homes, therapeutic units, foster care and Greenfields secure unit
- services provided to young people leaving care
The inspectors found some of our areas / services to be good or adequate, for example they found evidence that:
- good, flexible, personalised care was resulting in good outcomes for some looked after children and young people
- many young people were benefiting from social work support
- other agencies working alongside Children’s Social Services provided a range of complementary support, particularly Jersey’s Youth Service
- staff were experienced, committed and skilled
The inspection also found some areas were in need of improvement. This included the need to:
- gather the views of children and young people who are looked after
- improve the ways that senior managers communicate and engage with staff
- develop a systematic and comprehensive approach to service planning
- improve the management, training and support of residential child care
- ensure we collect accurate information about our performance and how well our services work
The Inspectors concluded that whilst improvements were needed, our capacity to improve was good. They recognised a clear commitment to quality improvement at all levels in the organisation and that the work already being undertaken to change meant we would be able to quickly develop fully modernised services.
Recommendations for improvement
The inspectors made a total of 14 different recommendations, all of which have been adopted by the Children’s Policy Group.
The first of the 14 recommendations was that a review should be undertaken of all outstanding recommendations from previous reports and incorporated alongside the Care Inspectorate recommendations into one single action plan.
This has been done and the Children’s Policy Group has produced a Service Improvement Plan which incorporates the 14 Care Inspectorate recommendations plus 45 outstanding recommendations taken from the previous reports.
2013 follow up inspection
The Care Inspectorate returned to Jersey in July 2013 to examine progress made since its initial report.
A number of important improvements were highlighted in the follow up report, with the Care Inspectorate citing increased confidence in the strategic leadership and greater understanding of the strategic direction for children’s services.
Children and young people were described as having a greater say regarding their care, and feeling involved and enthusiastic about this.
Part of this inspection process involved Associate Inspectors - an innovative model where young people with a direct experience of the Jersey care services were trained and supported by the Care Inspectorate. The Associate Inspectors were then able to assist with finding out what children and young people in care, and care leavers, thought about the services they receive.
Some areas were listed as needing further attention – these included:
- developing better means of gathering accurate information about the difference that services are making to the lives of children and young people
- ongoing review into potential improvements towards high quality residential care
Previous reports include:
Kathie Bull Report July 2003 part 1 (government and administration section)
Kathie Bull Report July 2003 part 2 (government and administration section)
Kathie Bull Report July 2003 part 3 (government and administration section)
Kathie Bull Report July 2003 part 4 (government and administration section)
Williamson Report: An Inquiry into Child Protection in Jersey June 2008 (government and administration section)
The Howard League for Penal Reform Jersey Review: A review of the Jersey youth justice system November 2008 (government and administration section)
Williamson Report: Implementation Plan January 2009 (government and administration section)
Health, Social Security and Housing Scrutiny Panel: Coordination of Services for Vulnerable Children – Sub-Panel Review July 2009 (government and administration section)
Youth Justice in Jersey: Options for change August 2010 (government and administration section)
European Committee for the Prevention of Torture and Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment (CPT) report March 2010 (government and administration section)