Issue - meetings

Wiltshire Council Adoption Service: 2020-2021 Year End Report

Meeting: 14/12/2021 - Cabinet (Item 101)

101 Wiltshire Council Adoption Service: 2020-2021 Year End Report

Report of the Chief Executive.

 

Supporting documents:

Minutes:

Cllr Peter Hutton, Portfolio Holder for Safeguarding presented the report which provided a year-end report to Cabinet about the performance of the Council’s Adoption Service within Wiltshire Council for the period 1 April 2020 to 31 March 2021. The report also informed Cabinet about the effectiveness of Adoption West.

 

Cllr Hutton explained that the Council retains overall responsibility for the adoption of children whilst other functions are undertaken by Adoption West. The Cabinet were reminded that Adoption West is a Local Authority Trading Company that is owned by the six partner Local Authorities and commissioned by them to provide defined adoption services.

 

The Cabinet noted that Wiltshire Council’s adoption work was inspected by Ofsted in June 2019 as part of a wider inspection of Families and Children’s Services, with an overall inspection judgement of Good. It was noted that Cllr Jon Hubbard was the Chair of Adoption West Joint Scrutiny Panel that scrutinised information from Adoption West. Cllr Hutton and the Leader thanked all the staff involved in the Adoption Service for their hard work in achieving excellent outcomes for the children in Council care.

 

Cllr Jon Hubbard, Chair of Children’s Select and in his role as Chair of Adoption West Joint Scrutiny Panel commented generally on the report and whilst acknowledging that the report and performance was very positive, highlighted some areas for improvement, including the journey of a child through the system and the impact of Covid on current and new procedures. Cllr Hutton, in recognising there was always a need for continual improvement, he confirmed only safe and stable placements were made for looked after children, which in certain circumstances took longer to achieve.

 

Cllr Ian Thorn welcomed the very positive report.    

 

Resolved:

 

That the report is noted and accepted, and its contents are considered against the Corporate Parenting Strategic Priority for children looked after to have a loving home, good relationships, and respect.

 

Reasons for Decision:

 

Wiltshire Council is an Adoption Agency registered with Ofsted. The 2014 Adoption Minimum Standards (25.6) and 2013 Statutory Guidance (3.93 and 5.39) describe the information that is required to be reported to the executive side of the local authority, on a six-monthly basis, to provide assurance that the adoption agency is complying with the conditions of registration whilst being effective and achieving good outcomes for children.

Adoption West is subject to separate scrutiny arrangements through its own
Joint Scrutiny Panel, the current Chair being Cllr Jon Hubbard.