Decision details

Children in Care and Care Leavers Performance Information

Decision Maker: Corporate Parenting Board

Decision status: For Determination

Is Key decision?: No


The report provides an overview of performance information that Business Intelligence produce in relation to Children in Care and Care Leavers for the Board to review, discuss and agree what they would like provided at future meetings


Umer Khonat, Business Intelligence Analyst, presented the Children's Services Performance Update for October 2019.


The data provided was collated fortnightly and used at every level within the Authority.  Care leaver indicators were split into areas – North, East and Central.


The information was used to compare areas, see what works well and share best practice and learn from each service.  Information was also shared on figures that were not 100%, ie if an area was 79% good then look at what could be improved for the 21% that was not working.  Colours on the information were thresholds that had been set which mirrored the bandings that Ofsted had used.


The analysis information was used at performance meetings in districts and localities where it was scrutinised and performance was reviewed and teams engaged and commissioned research to look at how the data was used, any training issues there might be and the data acts as a mechanism.


As at October 2019 Lancashire was good at the following:




Timeliness – 6 month rate 85% (on par with national rate), improvement from 78% in 2017/18. October performance 89%


Children Protection Plans


1194 (48.2 per 10,000), reduced from 1296 since September 2019, this remained below the regional and statistical neighbour averages, however above the national average of 45.7 (per 10,000)


Children Looked After


  Short term placement stability – 8.2%

  Visits in Timescale – 92%

  Placements :

Ø  increase in Fostering to 61.1%

Ø  reduction in Supported accommodation to 6.7%


The North West was increasing on a national level, however it was not increasing as much as other areas.


Care Leavers


In Suitable Accommodation (19-21 Years) – 92.4%




Average caseload – 17 for all social workers (October 2019)


As at October 2019, this was what needed to improve and/or challenges for Lancashire.




Re-referral rate 21.3% - October 2019


Child Protection (CP)


  Visits within timescale – 85%

  Repeat child protection in 12 months (7.1%) and ever (25.5%) off target


Children Looked After (CLA)


  Rate of CLA per 10,000 – 85.0

  Repeat CLA 10.2%

  Dental current performance 70.3%

  Missing episodes interview completed within three days – 44.8%

  Strengths and Difficulty Questionnaire (SDQ)

  No Strengths and Difficulty Questionnaire – 312 (this is currently being worked on to improve this figure and look at themes).


Care Leavers


  Care leavers in Education, Employment or Training – 43.8%

  Care leavers in Contact (Last two Months) – 72.2%


After receiving this information the Board felt that they would like more information on the Strengths and Difficulty Questionnaires and what was being done to support and improve this figure.


A recent follow up visit from Ofsted showed that the Authority was improving and the compliments social workers received was incredible.  There was demonstrations of lots of auditing and quality assurance work being undertaken.  Partners were complimented along with young people who were spoken too and the work that the social work academy continued to deliver in developing social workers was incredibly good.  Also following on from the Staff Survey ran by Lancashire County Council, social workers feedback was really positive and caseloads had also dropped to 17.  Independent Reviewing Officers caseloads had also dropped significantly from 130 to around the mid-70s with mid-80s being the highest.


Another issue that came out from the Ofsted report was retention of staff within Children's Services and the Board were informed that turnover of staff has reduced significantly and also that there were now no agency Independent Reviewing Officers in the Authority.


Young people reported that they were involved with the social work academy and enjoyed sharing their experiences with social workers who in turn, felt it extremely beneficial to hear from young people first hand.


Resolved:  That the Board discussed and commented on the information presented and agreed the content of future performance information provided to subsequent meetings.


Report author: Michael Walder

Date of decision: 26/11/2019

Decided at meeting: 26/11/2019 - Corporate Parenting Board

Accompanying Documents: