Eastern Region Update April 2017

Self-Assessment, Peer Challenge and Review

The annual self-assessment process for 2017 is underway in each of the 11 local authorities in the Eastern Region. Once completed, these will be moderated and subjected to peer challenge by DCS/AD colleagues within the region. For SLI, the outcome will be new/revised priority areas for the coming year

A peer review has been undertaken into arrangements for LAC/Care Leavers in Central Bedfordshire, conducted by colleagues from Suffolk, Hertfordshire and Peterborough.

Paired peer health-checks are currently taking place, where pairs of local authorities ‘buddy up’ to perform reciprocal peer reviews into Contact & Referral arrangements in each other’s LA.

Data benchmarking continues throughout the region, with a quarterly tartan rug report highlighting comparative performance across all LAs for a range of performance measures. A targeted benchmarking report has been produced on SGO performance and a Section 20 benchmarking exercise is just commencing.

Regional Priorities:

Doing things differently:

A regional event is being planned for June at which every LA in the region will showcase key areas of innovation and improvement by holding workshops or hosting a ‘market stall’.

Improving attainment of vulnerable children especially around KS2:

A planning workshop is being held for school improvement leads and representative head teachers to:

  • Consider current educational attainment of vulnerable groups at KS2 in the region
  • Develop a shared understanding of key factors affecting the attainment of vulnerable groups
  • Share strategies for improvement, drawing on learning from local authorities and schools
  • Agree a sector-led improvement programme of work in 2017-18.

The regional Virtual School Heads group has developed an action plan, with priorities of:

• The effective monitoring of provision and outcomes for children in care by designated teachers that inform intervention

• High-quality Personal Education Plans from all schools that influence practice and bring about improved outcomes

• Effective use of Pupil Premium Plus

• To develop better partnership working between LAs to improve outcomes for children in care placed in other LAs.

Regional networks

A full programme of regular network meetings are supported for:

  • SLI governance groups
  • AD network
  • LSCB chairs and business managers
  • Workforce leads
  • Principal social workers
  • QA leads
  • Performance information management group
  • Corporate parenting steering group
  • Leaving care network.

Other regional activity

Leadership & workforce development:

The focus for this work stream is to:

  • Encourage LAs to work together to shape the QSW recruitment market with a focus on supply and demand
  • Manage agency pay rates, and quality and supply of workers
  • Improve quality of SW students and programmes
  • Deliver regional strategic workforce planning for QSWs
  • Encourage neighbouring regions to launch similar initiatives to manage the overall supply and demand of social workers at a national level.

Regional adoption agency development:

Work continues on developing regional adoption agencies within the region.

UASC national transfer scheme:

A rota scheme is operating within the region to enable equitable transfer/dispersal of UASC between all local authorities in liaison with the Strategic Migration Partnership.


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