Inspectors praised the team’s continued progress and hard work in a report following the inspection in June, which resulted in an overall grade of outstanding. Two out of three areas were judged to be outstanding, and inspectors found that ‘children who need help and protection in Bracknell Forest receive a consistently high quality service.’
Ofsted reported that since a previous inspection in July 2021, ‘relationships with partners have been strengthened and improved, which has had a positive impact on the quality of referral information and early joint working.’
The report from Ofsted also stated:
“An ambitious senior leadership team has ensured that children living in Bracknell Forest get consistently good and often better support from its services. Children receive the right support at the right time. There is strong corporate support for children’s services, with investment appropriately provided to prioritise services for vulnerable children.
“More children and their families are now supported by specialist workers working alongside skilled children’s social workers. Through this individualised and intensive work, many families have been able to bring about positive change which has improved their parenting and the quality of their relationships with their children.
“Social workers receive regular, purposeful multi-agency group supervision which is facilitated through the service’s chosen social work model.”
In relation to ‘the experiences and progress of children in care and care leavers’, the report stated:
“Children and young people in the care of Bracknell Forest benefit from consistently good support and care from their committed and caring social workers and foster carers.”
The council is committed to continue to improve in this specific area. The report added that young people who have left care ‘speak highly of individualised support provided’.
Grainne Siggins, Executive Director: People, said:
“I am immensely proud that Bracknell Forest’s children’s services has been rated as outstanding. This is testament to the hard work, dedication and passion in providing the best possible service to improve the lives of children, young people and their families in the borough.
“We will continue to focus on improving our services to ensure that we can provide outstanding services to all of our children and young people.”
Yvette Stanley, Ofsted’s National Director for Social Care, said:
“Bracknell Forest’s children’s services demonstrated a culture of child-focused support and challenge across all service levels. The hard work of the leadership team, staff, wider council and safeguarding partners all contributed to this fantastic achievement.”
The Ofsted inspection of children’s services found that ‘there is a positive and dynamic culture across the service, with a strong focus on support and challenge.’ Ofsted inspectors added:
“Knowledgeable and passionate workers know children they work with very well. Children are regularly seen by the same social worker and their voice is clearly recorded and understood.”
View the full report on the Ofsted website.