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Council given six months to turn around 'inadequate' children's services

PUBLISHED: 11:47 12 October 2016 | UPDATED: 11:47 12 October 2016

Bromley civic centre

Bromley civic centre

Archant

The education secretary was handed a report on the service

The education secretary has given Bromley council six months to fix the ‘failings’ plaguing its children’s services.

In April, an Ofsted inspection branded the borough’s service, aimed at protecting children, as ‘inadequate’ in all areas.

In its report the service was shamed as a ‘corporate failure’, reading: “There are widespread and serious failures in the services provided to children and families in Bromley.”

Since the report, the council has hired a new executive director for care services, education and health.

Ade Adetosoye has been advising on an improvment plan and has previously worked at services with ‘good’ and ‘outstanding’ ratings at the City of London Corporation.

Up to £2.3million was agreed by the council from contingency funds to be used to help deliver its improvement plan.

In six months time, a government commissioner will deliver a report to the education secretary on how well the plan has been enforced.

A council spokesperson said: “The foundations are in place and over the coming six months, with the DfE appointed Commissioner in place, we believe we are well placed to demonstrate the progress being made in positive outcomes for children and young people across the borough.

Prior to the decision, a report was issued to the DfE, which highlighted strengths in front line staff and managers working in the service.

But it went on to highlight a ‘lack of effective leadership and management at all levels’ with a ‘poor understanding of services and their strengths and weaknesses

A follow up report will be sent to Justine Greening on April 14, following the sixth month evaluation process.

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