Agenda and minutes

Corporate Parenting Panel
Wednesday, 5th September, 2018 5.00 pm

Venue: F11 - Town Hall

Contact: Michelle Gerning
020 8726 6000 x84246  Email:

No. Item


Minutes of the previous meeting pdf icon PDF 72 KB

To approve the minutes of the meeting held on Thursday 19 July 2018 as an accurate record.



The minutes of the meeting held on Thursday 19 July 2018 were agreed as an accurate record.



Disclosures of interest

In accordance with the Council’s Code of Conduct and the statutory provisions of the Localism Act, Members and co-opted Members of the Council are reminded that it is a requirement to register disclosable pecuniary interests (DPIs) and gifts and hospitality to the value of which exceeds £50 or multiple gifts and/or instances of hospitality with a cumulative value of £50 or more when received from a single donor within a rolling twelve month period. In addition, Members and co-opted Members are reminded that unless their disclosable pecuniary interest is registered on the register of interests or is the subject of a pending notification to the Monitoring Officer, they are required to disclose those disclosable pecuniary interests at the meeting. This should be done by completing the Disclosure of Interest form and handing it to the Democratic Services representative at the start of the meeting. The Chair will then invite Members to make their disclosure orally at the commencement of Agenda item 3. Completed disclosure forms will be provided to the Monitoring Officer for inclusion on the Register of Members’ Interests.




There were none.



Urgent Business (if any)

To receive notice of any business not on the agenda which in the opinion of the Chair, by reason of special circumstances, be considered as a matter of urgency.



There was none.


Update on actions agreed at previous meeting(s)

There are none.


There was none.


Review of the Council’s Staying Put Policy pdf icon PDF 218 KB

To follow


The Head of Service for Looked After Children and Resources updated the Panel on the review of the Councils Staying Put Policy.

Officers shared that the Council regularly have young people and children at the meetings. Managers responsible for children’s care council was encouraged to be represented at the meeting in front of the Panel.


Care leaver Ashleigh was introduced to the Panel as she had delivered fantastic work supporting youth engagement team and experience in the leaving care team and in preparation for adulthood. Ashleigh returned back to the service eight months ago as a care leaver following the Ofsted inspection, to use her experience and support the service. Ashleigh was supporting the Children and Care Council. She also helped with the Local Offer and was very passionate about driving change.


Following the last Panel meeting, questions arose of the Staying Put Policy which was addressed in the report with regards to young person working and their contribution towards homes, and council tax reimbursement.


The Panel Co-Optees had recognised the changes and had seen a fairer system than before. Foster carers who resided outside the borough, was satisfied with the outcome when the issue of council tax was addressed.


The Panel RESOLVED: To agree and sign off the Staying Put Policy.



Independent Reviewing Officer Annual Report pdf icon PDF 350 KB

To follow


The report of the Independent Review Officers (IRO) was delivered by former Authority Designated Officer and current Quality Assurance Manager Lead Karen Massey and current Authority Designated Officer Adam Stanley-Feron of Croydon.


Officers highlighted that there was more room for improvement following the  

Ofsted Inspection for the IRO to challenge social work practice and provide evidence. The service needed to evidence challenges of inadequate performance to help the whole service on the journey and focus on good quality care plans.


Drift and delay was highlighted as a main area of concern where things were not quickly resolved. The service had relaunched the Croydon Escalation Resolution Protocol (CERPs) process, which was a way of formalising challenge talking to team managers and social workers first. The role of the IRO would be to focus on the outcome and not the process, and this would be aimed to be completed in a timely way. This way, the IRO service should be able to manage the drift that happens.


Data was shared with the Panel informing that in the two-thousand and nine reviews there was one-thousand one hundred and nineteen with children. This provided a lot of information in what had happened to looked after children within Croydon. The focus was on the activities of what the staff can do as a service of how to improve.


Officers highlighted the gaps in the service which needed to be improved, which included completing reviews on time and knowing when reviews took place.


Since February 2018, there was a number of structures that changed to better the service. This included the processes of how reviews were monitored. Officers informed that reviewing looked after children cases was a statutory requirement for the IRO to monitor, scrutinise, think about planning, listen to the voice of the child, ensuring that the right consultation forms was shared at the meeting where an outcome is later taken into account. Through this the IRO team can service all LAC Reviews, this also included the quality for the IRO work with their quality of report and minutes and family approach.


Officers note that there was sixty mid-year reviews that had taken place in August. This helped the service demonstrate better ways in working with children.


The service was looking into the way children would be better involved in the LAC reviews, and this would be by way of an app or a smiley face form instead of a paper consultation, to engage children. This way the service was putting the child at the centre of attention to ensure a better resolution in a plan that would identify their need.


With questions arising of the use of the consultation form, Child M highlighted that she liked the smiley face form (consultation form) as she was able to identify her emotions of being happy or sad. Ashleigh recalled of the paper work being well used, but understood the difficulty of the form and suggested that a voice note or an app would be a  ...  view the full minutes text for item 30/17


Care Leavers' Local Offer pdf icon PDF 71 KB

To follow

Additional documents:


Leaving Care Service Leader presented to the Panel the Care Leaver’s Local Offer which had been several months in the making. The document/brochure was presented to internal officers, and more work had been added to this work. The statutory deadlines was within the next few weeks, with an expectation for publication.


The Published Local Offer to Care Leavers was a new duty that came about within the Social Work Act in 2017. A local offer would be required to cover six, and do a corporate piece of work, of the entire council and work done by the leaders.


In depth, officers shared the key part in developing the offer which was the final literation. The Panel heard that there was two key issues: employment and housing. This version had a strengthen offer where the care leavers would be provided accommodation by the Council, and how young people would be engaged to view properties.


Going forward, care leavers forum and setting up home allowance would be set up as this is a duty for the Council to provide money and goods in setting up their first home.


Feedback was received from the Executive Director for audio files and other summary and development. To summarise key entitlement to the young person via a Care Leavers app that was proposed to go live during Care Leavers Week in October.


Former care leaver, Ashleigh, who sat on the Panel, shared with the Panel of her time as a care leaver. She highlighted that she was not aware of the entitlements she was to receive from the Council as there was no information, and thus the care leaver’s brochure/document would have informative guidelines to help other care leavers that have little support. Ashleigh expressed that when something was in writing it gave the young person something to hold on to as it would be transparent.


Members of the Panel welcomed the brochure which was set in the right direction, and the forum was also welcomed to see the progression going forward. Conversely, there was discussions of the document which was quite lengthy, and suggested a more succinct information for young care leavers to access and have available. In addition, it was highlighted that as the brochure was targeted for young people, it would need to be memorable and identify more with the individual who may rely on the brochure as their bible. Some Members on the Panel wanted the style, culture, pictures and language adaptable to be suitable for the young person and indicate the right message. One Member of the Panel welcomed the comprehensive brochure and made comments that there was no issue with the document in terms of language as it was clear English and referred to the document/brochure as a handbook. Officers reassured the Panel that the deliverance of the brochure was a working process and the delivery would have to be accurate to deliver the right information for the older and the younger children.


Officers shared that there was different ways  ...  view the full minutes text for item 31/17


Children in Care Performance Scorecard pdf icon PDF 232 KB

To follow


Officers informed that there would be a commitment to make a regular performance scorecard. The performance scorecard presented to the Panel was the July outturn. The RAG rating showed some areas of development and progression.


Officers shared that there was issues around medicals, and the review medicals for 2016/2017, pathway plans and care reviews and small administrative business support.


Officers addressed the strength of the performance scorecard which highlighted that basic stability was good. The CIC 3 or remote placements and performance was strong which was a good testament to the foster carers.


The Panel highlighted that there was reasonable consistency.

Going forward the Panel Members would want to scrutinise an area in more detail for analytical review on the performance.


Recommendation: To move performance scorecard to the beginning of each meeting to address particular areas.



How has the Panel helped the Children in Care today?

For the panel to consider how its work at the meeting will improve services for children in care.


The Panel highlighted the following accomplishments which helped Children in Care:


  • The Panel identified key gaps.
  • Time mask.
  • The Panel highlighted that it was refreshing to see young people at the meeting in the hope that more young people can attend to challenge officers.
  • The Panel highlighted that it was interesting to have Virtual school listen in with LAC reviews and hear the feedback from foster carers. It was also good to know of the ongoing work of Quality Assurance if the LAC reviews and the education of care would feed into it.
  • The Panel was delighted to hear of the Local Offer and Ashleigh’s engagement in the meeting.
  • Having the commitment and the discussion of what the Local Offer would mean to the care leavers
  • Generally attending the meeting as an adult, from attending previously at a younger age, and to see how things had change and how people was not afraid to challenge.
  • IRO report and the challenge for them to do better; and to hear back from Ashleigh as it is good to see what it looks like when it goes right.
  • IRO implementation if fundament to be more affective at corporate planning for hardwiring better practice.
  • Staying Put Policy which was fit for purpose and Care Offer for care leavers. Good balanced thorough discussion.
  • Ground breaking and the change in the young people. The staff was enthused as the energy is incorporated. The fact it exist was good. Signoff for Staying Put Policy is good. Grateful to Ashleigh and Child M.
  • I loved it today. It’s great living with foster carers as they take me out, take me to church and give us so much lovely food.
  • Giving more confidence to explain to other foster carers who share the same issues. The commitment and passion delivered in here is very different to what we feel outside the Panel. It was about ensuring the process was delivered, and feeling the same passing as other officers in the room.
  • Depth of discussion that takes place, as foster carers we raise issues and the fact the department has taken all on board is positive that people are listening.
  • Foster carers do feel that they are not listened to, but in the Panel we was able to address some things on behalf of the foster carers. Today we focused on older children as recommended by Ofsted. A great inspired meeting.
  • We asked good questions and there was an honest debate. It was not just about the Ofsted comments we were discussing, but the discussion had would ensure that we was making steps to make our services better.
  • The discussion about the IRO and recommendations made. They would make big differences to see how we was ensured everyone listed to and more transparent of where people will go to, and care leavers and the conversation and the depth of it. Excited to making a difference to prepare young person to go out into the world.
  • To see Ashleigh here and to  ...  view the full minutes text for item 33/17


Work Programme pdf icon PDF 51 KB

To consider and approve the Panel’s work programme for the municipal year 2018/19.

To follow


The work programme was considered and it was noted that there was flexibility to amend the work programme as required should new items be identified. It was highlighted that the report of the Care Leaver’s Offer was to return at the next meeting in November.



Exclusion of the Press and Public

The following motion is to be moved and seconded where it is proposed to exclude the press and public from the remainder of a meeting:


“That, under Section 100A(4) of the Local Government Act, 1972, the press and public be excluded from the meeting for the following items of business on the grounds that it involves the likely disclosure of exempt information falling within those paragraphs indicated in Part 1 of Schedule 12A of the Local Government Act 1972, as amended.”



The following motion was moved by Councillor XXX and seconded by Councillor XXX to exclude the press and public:


“That, under Section 100A(4) of the Local Government Act, 1972, the press and public be excluded from the meeting for the following items of business on the grounds that it involves the likely disclosure of exempt information falling within those paragraphs indicated in Part 1 of Schedule 12A of the Local Government Act 1972, as amended.”


The motion was put and it was agreed by the Committee to exclude the press and public for the remainder of the meeting.