Venue: Town Hall, Moorgate Street, Rotherham. S60 2TH
Contact: Dawn Mitchell, Senior Democratic Services Officer
The minutes of the meeting held on 20th March, 2013, were considered and approved as a correct record subject to the inclusion of Karen Smith’s apologies.
Further to Minute No. 204 (Sexual Exploitation), Sara Graham asked for clarification with regard to “how to get the voluntary and community sector better involved in the multi-agency team.” Clair Pyper undertook to check this with the Sexual Exploitation Team.
It was also noted that the Home Affairs Select Committee was to publish its report in June.
Dorothy Smith reported that the Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE) Strategy and action plan had been launched at the end of March through the Local Safeguarding Children Board (LSCB). Partner perception was that the documents were Council documents and not owned them.
It was emphasised that, whilst the Council had pulled the Strategy and action plan together and facilitated the consultation, it was important that all parties owned their roles and responsibilities.
The Performance Management Framework was almost complete. It was to be updated on a monthly basis and reported quarterly to the LSCB with the first performance report due in late July.
Practice was underpinned by a fortnightly Silver Group and a monthly meeting of the Gold Group with representation almost secure across relevant agencies. Currently the LSCB was considering the role of the current Exploitation Sub-Committee and the option could be to merge it with the Silver Group.
Issues and Concerns
Looked After Children’s Council
- Currently meeting for Voice and Influence training and development sessions and preparing presentations on raising the profile of their work
- Weekly “chill and chat” meetings as well as sessions examining life story work – young people talking about their experiences, issues and exploring their feelings around being put into care. They had had sessions looking at self-awareness and self-esteem and had delivered a presentation to the Corporate Parent cluster
- Eleven Million Take Over Day – the young people had attended a regional transport event where those from Rotherham and Sheffield had delivered a workshop around acceptability of transport for young people. They had received an invitation to attend the First Bus depot to speak to some of the drivers to talk about the issues young people faced. They were also to have discussions with PS Rupert Chang about some of the issues
- The Youth Cabinet also been involved in a recent Scrutiny Review around a peer anti-bullying project
- Following a request from Youth Cabinet members an Anti-Fascist Group has been started
Parents and Carers Forum
- Annual update to be circulated to the Partnership
- The Forum had made quite a difference to parents over the last year - impact on transport arrangements and a massive impact around the voice of parents through the Charter which had been recognised nationally
- There would be a joint inspection looking at Child Sexual Abuse and Child Sexual Exploitation - part of the Joint Inspection Business Plan
- HM Inspectorate of Probation would be focussing on work to protect children. There would be 2 inspections - Adult Offending Work and a thematic inspection encompassing work undertaken both by the Probation Trust and Youth Offending Teams. 6 Probation Trusts would be identified for inspection between October, 2013 and March, 2014, and would be focussing on cases and looking to see if child safeguard issues were being properly assessed and action taken
- Sue Wilson to present
Sue Wilson, Performance and Quality Manager, gave the following powerpoint presentation regarding progress on gaining customer feedback and experiences:-
- To develop the “learning from customers” culture across the Directorate
- To develop a performance management culture which was not just about targets, indicators and statistics but where it was also about real life experiences and outcomes
- Where the voice of the children, parent and family was considered alongside statistical data, quality assurance findings, learning from complaints and finance to improve services
Establishing a Baseline
How do we currently obtain feedback?
· Every team across the Directorate had now documented and reviewed (with the support of the P&Q Team) the activities they used to captured feedback from child(ren), parents and carers using the Services
How teams currently capture customer feedback
· Quality assurance checks
· Case studies
· Assessments including Reviews
What was the most appropriate activity
· Mystery shopping in person/telephone
· Listening into calls
· Learning from complaints
· Home truths video diary
· Case study
· Independent customer interviews
· Customer journey mapping
· Website/electronic survey
· Telephone satisfaction survey
· Postal satisfaction survey
Support focus to date
- Operational safeguarding
- Fostering recruitment and selection
- Fostering supervisory
- Completed a pilot using semi-structured face-to-face interviews with families after Case Conference Reviews
- Updated questions and answers around Safeguarding on the Council website
- Set up the facility for Case Conference Chairs to capture on case notes on CCM the children’s/parents’ views from 1:1 meeting prior to conference (embedded)
More activities carried out
- Case Conference booklets were being redesigned and now included a separate page for obtaining the views of the child(ren)/parents prior to Case Conference
- A text message facility was currently being set up to give children/parents/carers a more modern and faster way to put forward their views prior to Case Conference
Adoption and Fostering
- Customer journey mapping – tracking the customers’ experience of Services from initial point of contact to completion of their journey via telephone conversations
- Over 20% of the Foster Carers registered with the Council had taken part in telephone surveys
- Surveys were first carried out in September, 2012, and every month since capturing feedback on their initial point of contact and experience at their first Panel
- There had been a change in the customers’ experiences
- The Supervisory Team survey focussed on:-
· The foster carers’ expectations of fostering
· Supervision and support received
· Their ideas on how they would change Fostering
· What made it rewarding for them
- Changes suggested were around
· The lack of availability, communication and support from the child’s social workers
· Removing/amending/clarifying rules and regulations preventing the children from being treated as “normal” as possible (e.g. bathing, hairdressers, going for tea, going on holiday)
- Services to change feedback activities accordingly
- Customer feedback to be collated by P&Q and included in performance reports
- Primarily focus should be on “the child”
- Evidence that we listen ... view the full minutes text for item 210.
- Sue Wilson to present
Sue Wilson, Performance and Quality Manager, and Tracy Blakemore, Corporate Improvement Officer, circulated copies of the Children and Young People’s Action Plan 2013-2016.
It had been developed around the 6 joint key priorities and linked into the Health and Wellbeing Strategy and the Joint Strategic Needs Assessment. The action plan underpinned the plan on a page and identified the high level actions, key links to existing workstreams, lead officers and delivery milestones. In addition, overarching outcome measures had been selected which would allow the Partnership to evidence the difference that its joint working was making to the lives of children, young people and their families.
The action plan now needed a named person to lead on each of the themes.
Resolved:- (1) That the action plan be sent electronically to all Partnership members requesting that:-
(a) they nominate a lead for each of the 6 Priorities
(b) notify Sue and/or Tracy of any feedback on the Plan by the close of play Friday 14th June 2013.
(2) That an updated version of the Plan be submitted to the Partnership’s July meeting.
'Once upon a School Project'
- Presentation by Deborah Bullivant
Deborah Bullivent, Inspire, gave the following presentation:-
Facts about Literacy in Rotherham
Key Stage 2 attainment 2012:
• In Yorkshire, 6% of schools were performing below floor targets
• Reading – 81% of Rotherham and 82% of Sheffield children, against the national average of 86%, attained Level 4 or above
• Writing - 77% of Rotherham, 79% Sheffield children achieved Level 4 against the national average of 81%
• The gap was significantly greater for those families classed as being in the 10% most disadvantaged areas, and increasing each year (apart from the period of RDA project)
Difference made by Inspire projects on 10% most deprived
• 11.4% improvement in English at KS2 across the board
• 11.8% improvement in level 4+ reading for boys
• 11% improvement in level 4+ writing for boys
• 22.6% improvement in reading at level 4+ for EAL pupils
Where is the Rotherham’s literacy strategy placed in Rotherham’s planning in 2013
• Build a literacy volunteer framework
• Read/Write for Pleasure Ambassadors
• Invest in the quality of interactions children had inside and outside the home in relation to print and books
• Ensure there were spaces for literacy which were engaging and conducive to inspiring the thirst for literacy learning
• Ensure children and young people could experience something radically different, something inspirational which injected some energy into the learning
• Enable shared experiences across year groups (older children mentoring)
• Break the cycle of low aspirations in families
• A development of outreach learning programmes which reached families who were often marginalised
• Family Learning Strategy
• Parent involvement
• Extend the reach of literacy – in terms of space, developing new imaginative spaces where children and young people’s skills could be extended
Once Upon a School
Story Festival 2013
• Was there an appetite for this in Rotherham?
• Awards for All Lottery funding and now with volunteers as funding was complete
• 36 sessions of learning since February half term
• Hardly any advertising so far
• All children received a Children’s University passport
• 209 family members had engaged in at least 3 hours of learning since the Festival began
• 129 children had undertaken from 3 hours to 27 hours (9 different sessions) of learning each so far
• 36 volunteers (75% of these were out of work adults) had signed up
• Feedback was good to outstanding – “Rotherham children need something like this”, “it doesn’t feel like learning but it is”, “my son said this was the best day of his life, and I agree with him”.
• Children were writing stories in their own time as a choice.
Discussion ensued with the following issues raised/clarified:-
- Ministry of Stories was the shop in London, hoped to be replicated in Rotherham
- The project was thriving – the work was all free even to schools by bringing in outside funding and selling products in the shop which were designed and contained stories written by ... view the full minutes text for item 212.
- Jenny Lingrell to present
Jenny Lingrell, Troubled Families Co-ordinator, presented a report highlighting some areas of delivery where a new approach was being taken that may, if successful, help to inform wider change to Services.
The areas highlighted were:-
- Enhanced Leadworker provision
- Enhanced support for families where children were subject to a Child Protection Plan delivered by the Voluntary and Community Sector alongside statutory services
- Supporting access to Improving Access to Psychological Services
- New Working relationships with Job Centre Plus
Discussion ensued on the report with the following issues raised/clarified:-
· The Director of Psychological Therapies for RDaSH sat on the national IAPT (Improving Access to Psychological Services) Panel if there were difficulties with the thresholds/clarification required
· As from June, 2013, multi-agency discussion panels would be established to look at complex families and ensure that their packages and commissioning was part of the discussion
· Work was happening nationally to link Troubled Families work with the Public Health agenda. Explicit guidance had been sent to Directors of Public Health and there may be opportunities to explore joint commissioning activities. Through this work, as gaps in provision were explored and an understanding of where those gaps were, it may be a conversation the Partnership would want to follow up through Public Health
· Would be helpful to bring a report on DfE procedures for funding.
· Troubled Families was aligned to Early Help but at present there was not a wide range of services jointly commissioned. There was an opportunity to examine the partnership funding coming into the local authority to deliver services which were benefiting the Partnership as a whole e.g. how much was Mental Health provision costing. The Partnership needed to consider the sustainability of provision against the cost of provision
Resolved:- (1) That the potential for the Families for Change Work to inform different models for Service delivery be noted.
(2) That detailed case studies be submitted in 6 months to exemplify how the highlighted development areas were supporting families.
- Dorothy Smith to present
Dorothy Smith, Director of Schools and Lifelong Learning, presented the above Action Plan which considered ways to improve health outcomes for children within Rotherham.
The Plan had been e-mailed to Partnership members requesting their comments which had been incorporated into the final draft.
Karen Smith expressed concern that she had replied with comments which did not seem to have been taken on board. She was particularly concerned about the language used in the document querying what the target audience was and whether it would be understood.
Resolved:- That Joanna Saunders, Sarah Whittle, Sue Wilson, Chrissy Wright, Warren Carratt and Karen Smith meet to discuss the Action Plan further.
- Claire Burton to present
Claire Burton, Commissioning Officer, presented a report setting out the outturn for the identified commissioning priorities for Children and Young Peoples’ Services for 2012/13 detailing the successful completion of commissioning activities and work in progress to be carried forward to 2013/13.
The report also set out proposals for 2013/14 Commissioning Priorities that met the identified priorities for the Directorates, the Partnership and the Health and Wellbeing Strategy as follows:-
- Rotherham Health and Wellbeing strategy – focussing on the Starting Well and Developing Well
- Special Educational Need and Disabilities
- Leaving Care
- Contracts for In-house services
- Budget Action Challenge Plan
- Health and Wellbeing Board Outcomes
- Strategic Commissioning Work Plan
Resolved:- (1) That the outturn achieved against the Commissioning Priorities for 2013/14 be noted.
(2) That that commissioning proposals for 2013/14 be noted.
(3) That regular progress reports be submitted to the Partnership.
(4) That further joint commissioning opportunities in 2013/14 be developed with partners.
- Clair Pyper to present
The Partnership had been requested to consider the above Charter by the Health and Wellbeing Board (Minute No. 86(1) refers) in light of the Partnership having already signed up to the Every Disabled Child Matters Charter.
Clair Pyper, Interim Director, Safeguarding Children and Families, reported that the 7 points included in the Charter, whilst in principle were well actioned, there would be further work needed to be done.
Discussion ensued. It was felt that the Partnership and Board had spent considerable time considering their principles and values which encompassed every group that they worked with. Children with disabilities were prioritised and could be easily evidenced. It would involve further work to be undertaken to rewrite what already existed to fit the Charter and it was felt that that time and effort could be put to better use implementing/commissioning good services.
Resolved:- That the Health and Wellbeing Board be informed that the Partnership did not feel that it should sign up to the Charter in light of the comments made above.
The minutes of the Rotherham Local Safeguarding Board held on 15th March, 2013, were noted.
Any Other Business.
Sara Graham reported that Rotherham CYPF Consortium was leading on a Big Lottery Bid, ‘Fulfilling Lives,’ which had sign up from all statutory partners.
They had been successful at the Expression of Interest stage and were now putting together a bid for the long list stage, which was due in on 7th June, 2013. The bid was aimed at supporting the health and wellbeing of children from pre-birth to 3 years. There were 3 key aims which related to diet and nutrition, speech and literacy, social and emotional wellbeing. If the bid got through to the short list stage, there was a £400,000 Development Fund.
The bid would ultimately be awarded to 3-5 local authorities and was worth £30-50M over 8-10 years. Notification of success at the next stage would be made in August, 2013.
Dates of Next Meeting
- 17th July, 2013
- 18th September
- 20th November
- 22nd January, 2014
- 19th March
- 21st May
- 16th July
All meetings to commence at 2.00 p.m. to be held in the Town Hall
Resolved:- That the next meeting be held on Wednesday, 17th July, 2013, commencing at 2.00 p.m. in the Town Hall.