The National Audit Office (NAO) has published a report that details some of the recent pressures on Children's Social Care.
The findings of the report include:
- Since 2010, there has been a 77% increase in assessments of children considered to be at risk of harm, 26% increase in Child Protection Plans and a 15% increase in the number of children in care.
- In 2017/2018, the biggest risk factor identified in children's social care assessments was Domestic Violence, accounting for 51.1% of factors. This was followed by mental Health (42% - which has almost doubled compared to 2016/2017's 24%), and emotional abuse (21.7%).
- There were 655,630 referrals: 29% came from Police, 18% from Education, 15% Health Services, 14% LA services, 8% Individual, 17% Other/Unknown.
- ,631,090 of referrals resulted in assessments under section 17 of the children act 1989
- 198,090 of referrals resulted in Section 47 enquiries under the Children Act 1989 - 79,470% of these resulted in initial child protection conferences, with 68,770 child protection plans commencing.
- 61,690 referrals led to no further action.
These statistics are national, so there will be variation between local authorities, however, it may be of interest for schools to look at and compare to their own experiences and gain an understanding of the bigger picture in terms of Children's Social Care involvement nationwide.
The report is available[HERE]
Article about the report[HERE]