Family centre in Barnsley rated “inadequate” by education watchdog Ofsted

A Barnsley Council education boss says the authority will “work tirelessly” to make changes after a family centre was branded “inadequate”.

Tuesday, 26th April 2022, 10:09 am
Updated Tuesday, 26th April 2022, 1:49 pm

Grimethorpe Family Centre was inspected by education watchdog Ofsted in March, and was branded “inadequate” overall.

Inspectors say in their report that the “safety of children at the setting is compromised,” as leaders have “failed to ensure that those who are responsible for safeguarding have the skills, knowledge and understanding they need.”

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Mel John-Ross, executive director for children’s services at Barnsley Council said: “We are disappointed with the overall Ofsted judgement at the Family Centre and we will work tirelessly to make the changes necessary.

The centre was praised for having a “well planned curriculum,” and inspectors added that “staff work hard to develop children’s love of reading”.

Inspectors also commended the centre for helping “make good progress in their communication and language skills,” and praised leaders for being “aware of the pressures on staff,” and supporting their wellbeing.

However, inspectors stated that although staff have a good understanding of the possible signs that a child may be being abused, “when designated safeguarding leads receive information that a child might be at risk of harm they do not follow local safeguarding partnership procedures to report this.”

“Leaders fail to keep required information about the children in their care.

“They do not record details of all parents who have legal parental responsibility for children, or details of who the child normally lives with.

“Those who are responsible for checking the ongoing suitability of staff do not have the relevant knowledge and understanding to do so.

Mel John-Ross, executive director for children’s services at Barnsley Council said: “We are disappointed with the overall Ofsted judgement at the Family Centre and we will work tirelessly to make the changes necessary.

“Whilst we do have to make improvements in some areas, the Ofsted inspectors highlighted many strengths at Grimethorpe Family Centre.

“These included the setting having a well-planned, strong curriculum that helps children develop, with a particular focus on communication and language development.

“Our SEND provision is good, and we have good links to the wider community.

“We know there is more to do on our safeguarding procedures and training, and ensuring we consistently refer to more specialist or statutory services when appropriate.

“We developed a detailed improvement plan to make sure all Ofsted recommendations are implemented, and all actions from the Ofsted report have now been completed.”