Summer webinar series

Join us as we unpack the findings of some of the research we contributed to the Independent Review of Children’s Social Care

Earlier this year, What Works for Children’s Social Care were pleased to provide independent research support to the Independent Review of Children’s Social Care. We published a series of reports that were commissioned by the Review in order to better understand a number of target areas and recommendations. 

Now, our summer webinar and podcast series is putting the spotlight on this new work, unpacking four key reports we contributed to the Review.

Join us at lunchtime on Mondays from 11 July for free webinars sharing the highlights of our research, hearing from those involved and getting  local authorities’ and sector reflections about next steps. We’ll also be discussing the findings in a podcast series during the same weeks, so check back to tune in.

1. Children in Need – Understanding Service Provision (England) – 11 July

By the time they reach 16, as many as one in seven children will have had an assessment or received support from a social worker under section 17 of the Children Act 1989.  Yet, little is known about these children, why they receive support, how it is delivered and what it achieves. Our research with four local authorities aimed to add to the existing but limited knowledge base about the support offered to children and their families who are subject to a Child in Need plan. Our findings highlighted inconsistencies across local authorities: in how Child in Need plans were used, thresholds for involvement and interventions, and the range of services offered to families in need of support. Join us at 12.30 to find out what we found and what this means for the sector.

On the webinar:

WWCSC will share the findings of the research and reflect on the implications for future policy.

We will hear from Shungu Chigocha, Associate Director Practice Improvement and Quality Assurance, Achieving for Children, about what the findings mean for local authorities.

Sign up for the webinar

Speakers:

  • Anna Bacchoo, Director of Practice, WWCSC (Chair)
  • Aoife O’Higgins, Director of Research
  • Shungu Chigocha, Associate Director Practice Improvement and Quality Assurance, Achieving for Children (Windsor & Maidenhead)

Read the report here and blog on the findings from our Director of Research here

2. Understanding Residential Care – 18 July

It is widely recognised that outcomes for children in residential care in England tend to be poor. However, far less is known about who these children are and what their experiences are of the care system. Our new research aims to improve the current understanding of who the children living residential care placements are and their journeys before and after entering residential care to help better understand these outcomes.

Our findings reveal a worrying picture, showing high levels of need and placement instability,for children who have experience of residential care. Urgent attention is now needed to make sure future changes to the care system support these children. Join us at 12 noon to find out what these findings mean for social care and local authorities.

On the webinar:

WWCSC will share the findings of the research and reflect on the implications for future policy. We will hear from Emmanuel Akpan-Inwang, founder and director of the Lighthouse Pedagogy Trust, on what this means for the sector.

Sign up for the webinar

Speakers:

  • Eleanor Briggs, Director of Policy, WWCSC (Chair)
  • Eva Schoenwald, Senior Researcher
  • Emmanuel Akpan-Inwang, Founder, Lighthouse Children’s Social Care

Read the report here

3. Understanding Formal Kinship Care – 25 July

There is increasing interest in the potential of kinship care as a permanence option for children, but little is known about the children in kinship care or their experiences of the care system. Our new research sought to fill that gap by providing a national overview of kinship foster care and kinship special guardianship, looking at who these children are, their care journeys and outcomes.

Our findings show strong regional variation in the use of these kinship placements  but also an underrepresentation of some groups that needs urgent attention. 

Join us at 12 noon to hear more about what we found, and what this means for local authorities.

On the webinar:

WWCSC will share the findings of the research and reflect on the implications for future policy and we will hear what this means for the sector.

Sign up for the webinar

Speakers:

  • Aoife O’Higgins, Director of Research, WWCSC (Chair)
  • Eva Schoenwald, Senior Researcher
  • Paul McGrath, Policy and Practice Advisor, Kinship

Read the report here

4. Secure Children’s Homes – 1 August

Secure Children’s Homes exist to safeguard society’s most vulnerable children, who often have complex needs. Our research aimed to build an understanding of the little-researched topic of how places for these children are commissioned and how the process could be improved.

We interviewed a range of  stakeholders including v SCHs in England, local authority commissioners , the Youth Custody Service (YCS), the Secure Welfare Coordination Unit, Ofsted and  third sector organisations, to identify the challenges with the commissioning process and potential solutions. . 

Join us at 12 noon to hear more about what we found and what this means for the sector.

On the webinar:

WWCSC will share the findings from the research and reflect on the implications for future policy.

We will also  hear from Alice Roe, from the Family Justice Observatory, who will discuss how this research builds on their own findings and the next steps for the sector.

Sign up for the webinar

Speakers:

  • Aoife O’Higgins, Director of Research, WWCSC (Chair)
  • Eleanor Briggs, Director of Policy
  • Alice Roe, Family Justice Observatory

Read the report here