Ofsted has highlighted the steady improvements made to Barnet’s Children’s Services in the findings from its latest monitoring visit.
The findings come after Ofsted carried out its sixth and final monitoring visit since the council’s Children’s Services were judged to be inadequate in July 2017.
During the visit in February, inspectors focused on the quality of practice in the care leaver’s service. They found that the quality of social work practice is improving steadily and that the changes to the service are making a positive difference to the lives of young people, with appropriate support and help offered to care leavers.
The inspection looked at areas including support to care leavers moving into independence, case recording and oversight, and support to help care leavers cope with life’s challenges.
In its findings, Ofsted highlighted the focus being put into improving the council’s Onwards and Upwards service which works to support care leavers.
This included the service’s office base being developed with feedback and participation from young people to make sure it is welcoming and child-centred, and so that young people can drop in on a regular basis.
Inspectors went on to say that high levels of consistent, regular and skilled planning was helping to achieve positive outcomes for young people, but acknowledged that some challenges remain.
Care leavers are given support to live independently, attend university and transition planning is sensitively aimed at the pace of the young person.
Ofsted found that specific projects to provide mentoring and support to young people to enter education, employment or training are in place, leading to a positive take up of apprenticeships and work experience.
Councillor David Longstaff, Chairman of the Children, Education and Safeguarding Committee, said: “Ofsted has highlighted a range of improvements that are being made to help us ensure the safety and wellbeing of our children, including how changes are making a really positive difference to the lives of young people.
“We acknowledge there are some areas which require further work and we will continue to do what is needed to achieve the improvements we need to make.”
The full findings of the visit are available via the Ofsted website.