This is the first of three posts on what am I saying in my response to the Government’s consultation on the Revised Safeguarding Statutory Guidance. This post is about the document entitled Working Together to Safeguard Children - http://www.education.gov.uk/a00211065/revised-safeguarding-guidance
- This guidance appears to cover most of the main legislation, but not always in a logical and accessible way.
- Like the other two documents, this document is written in a dense style – ‘official-ese’ - which makes few concessions to the reader.
- I believe that it would be preferable for documents like this to be written with a view to being helpful to those who have to read them. For example this might be achieved by organising the information about the duties and responsibilities of each agency under logical headings. Listing agencies in alphabetical order might also improve accessibility.
- The Guidance provides an outline of what Local Safeguarding Children's Boards should do and provides some pointers to good practice. How these bodies become ‘effective’ (or ‘more effective’) is beyond the scope of guidance of this type – a textbook on that subject would be required.
- There should be more learning from best practice and sharing ideas between LSCBs. The Guidance might be improved to suggest ways in which this could be done.
- Thematic inspection or research into the effectiveness of LSCBs would be helpful, but this must go beyond superficial enquiries and simplistic research questions, typical of many Ofsted inspections. Substantive issues should be addressed such as what are the outputs of LSCBs, what impact do they have, how are they planned and controlled, how could they be improved?