join donate discuss

Greens respond to “inadequate” Ofsted report into Bradford Children’s Services.

Bradford Green Party has responded to the release of the latest Ofsted report into Children’s Services which ranks the service as “inadequate” and highlights “widespread failures” in social work practice.

Green Party councillors have also called for the Leader of The Council to consider her position in light of the “shameful” report which states “corporate and senior leaders have failed to improve services, and have overseen further decline.”

Councillor Celia Hickson (Tong Ward), Deputy Leader of the Green Party Group on Bradford Council and the group spokesperson on Children’s Services said,

"It is absolutely shameful that in the five years since the last Ofsted report we find ourselves in a situation where Children's Services in our City is still ranked as inadequate.

"Children’s Services is meant to look after the most vulnerable children in our district. Not only are improvements happening at a glacial pace, the report suggests that in some areas things are getting even worse. The high turnover of staff and the dependency on agency workers is once again at the heart of serious failures in the service.

"The one saving grace in the report for me is that Ofsted have seen that frontline social workers are committed to doing their best to children. We just need more of them.

“But whilst we wait for that recruitment to take place, there are children across Bradford who are still being failed. The start of the new Children and Families Trust really can't come soon enough.”

Responding to the claim in the report that, “corporate leaders continue to lack understanding of the scale of improvement required", Councillor Matt Edwards (Tong Ward), Leader of the Green Party Group on Bradford Council said,

“It is absolutely staggering that after five years, Ofsted think that leaders at our Council still fail to grasp just how bad the situation in Children's Services actually is. This is a massive red flag.

"Ofsted have also said that this lack of leadership is one of the main reasons why we as an employer are struggling to retain staff. I am hopeful that with the new permanent Director of Children’s Services combined with the recruitment of an experienced Chief Executive of the new trust, we can see senior leadership make the improvements that are needed.

"Over the last five years we have seen changes in the leadership on the ‘business’ side of the Council but the political side is still largely the same. Many of the issues in Children's Services are the direct result of political decisions and I think that the Leader of The Council really needs to be considering if she is the right person to continue to lead our Council."