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Brighton & Hove’s Inspection of Local Authority Children’s Services (ILACS) has been rated ‘Outstanding’ overall by Ofsted.

Date: Thursday, 16th May 2024 | Category: Uncategorized

BHSCP is pleased to share a message from one of our Lead Partners, Deb Austin (Corporate Director, Families, Children & Learning Services at Brighton & Hove City Council) regarding the recent Ofsted Inspection of Local Authority Children’s Services (ILACS). 

Dear partnership colleagues,

Brighton & Hove’s Inspection of Local Authority Children’s Services (ILACS) has been published today.  I’m delighted to that we have been rated ‘Outstanding’ overall by an Ofsted.  This is an improvement on our “Good” rating of 2018.

I am enormously proud of this tremendous achievement and a reflection of all the amazing work that is done to support our city’s children and their families.

The ILACS focuses on the effectiveness of a council’s services across 4 main areas:

  1. the impact of leaders on social work practice
  2. the experience and progress of children who need help and protection
  3. the experiences and progress of children in care
  1. the experiences and progress of care leavers

We have received ‘Outstanding’ sub judgements for our work with children in care; care leavers; and for the impact of leadership and management. I am really pleased that our sub judgement for children in need of help and protection has improved to Good.

Responding to the needs of our city’s most vulnerable has never been more difficult given the on-going impact of the pandemic upon children’s development and opportunities; the continuation of austerity and the cost-of-living crisis. The fact that we continued to provide improved services, despite such challenges, is an incredible achievement and one to be immensely proud of.

The inspection report can be read on the Ofsted website– I would encourage everyone to read it.

Partnership working and the partnership itself was highlighted as a strength several times during the inspection and the strengths in this area are reflected in the outcome letter:

“ Highly effective and embedded partnership work is modelled by the safeguarding partnership board. This impressive approach is found in the family hubs and at the ‘front door for families’ and continues to be woven through work with all children and care leavers”

“Partnership work across the city to identify children at risk of missing education is effective. “

“Children benefit from collaborative partnership work”.

“Partnership working at all levels, led by the safeguarding partnership, and the multidisciplinary practice are real strengths in Brighton and Hove.

“Strong and collaborative strategic partnership work results in an impressive array of wraparound multi-agency and multidisciplinary services for children at risk of entering public care.”

The report concludes with a wonderful summary: ‘The quality of work is strong throughout children’s social care services and is making a positive difference to the progress and experiences of children and families in Brighton & Hove.

This new judgement means that Brighton & Hove City Council now has the highest rating across 3 key areas of Children’s Services:

  1. Children’s Social Care Services
  2. Special Educational Needs and Disabilities and Alternative Provision
  3. Youth Justice Service

This is an exceptional range of results and a fantastic achievement.

Thank you for all your continued partnership support and work to improve the lives for children and their families in our city.

Best wishes, 

Deb Austin (she/her) | Corporate Director, Families, Children & Learning Services | Brighton & Hove City Council