DfE Children in Care Statistics Fostering

Commenting on the latest DfE statistics showing an increase in numbers of children in care, Alison O’Sullivan, President of the Association of Directors of Children’s Services, said:

“Local authorities have a clear responsibility to care for children in their local areas including unaccompanied asylum seeking children. The figures show a steady increase in the overall numbers of children in care since 2008. This increase has placed a massive burden on local authorities and it is to their enormous credit that this increasing challenge has been successfully met and these most vulnerable children continue to receive high quality care and support. We believe that the causes for this increase are complex and varied and warrant greater government attention and support, especially in the light of austerity.

“There has also been a spike in the numbers of unaccompanied asylum seeking children under the care of local authorities in the past year alone. All of these children are extremely vulnerable, they are fleeing war zones and many have experienced terrible atrocities in their home countries. Children’s services are determined to play their part in the light of the necessary response to the Syrian crisis but our systems are under tremendous strain as they stand. We must recognise that every child and every young person in care has their own story to tell and going forward we must consider the best way to secure better outcomes for all children in our care.”


The Association of Directors of Children’s Services (ADCS) Ltd is the professional leadership association for Directors of Children’s Services and their senior management teams in England.

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