Agenda and minutes

Local Safeguarding Children Board
Friday, 11 May 2018 9.30 am

Venue: Council Chamber - Time Square, Market Street, Bracknell, RG12 1JD. View directions

Contact: Lizzie Rich  01344 352253

No. Item


Minutes and Matters Arising


The minutes of the last meeting were agreed as a correct record.


Arising from the minutes, the following points were noted:

  • Lorna Hunt was taking the issue of  Domestic Abuse notifications for Early Years providers to a meeting of the MASH Board next month and would update the LSCB on progress. (Action: Lorna Hunt)
  • Shaun Virtue had updated the LSCB Forum on the Hidden Harm campaign.
  • A further request for an updated structure chart for East Berks CCG was still awaited and once received would be circulated to Board members. (Action: Debbie Hartrick)
  • BHFT were expecting a CQC inspection before September 2018.
  • A revised list of the Future in Mind group’s membership was to be clarified at a meeting scheduled this month and would be circulated to the Board. (Action: Debbie Hartrick)
  • Emotional Health and Wellbeing was now a key priority for the LSCB.
  • It had been decided at the LISG to establish a task and finish group to assess the data provided to the LSCB from CAMHS, and this would be led by Janette Fullwood CCG. It had become clear that the current data received may not be addressing the safeguarding performance questions. Details of the revised data set will be shared with the LISG once agreed. (Action: Alison Burnell)
  • The final report of the young people’s consultation was being finalised and would come to the Board in July 2018. (Action: Alison Burnell/Jonathan Picken)
  • The LSCB were encouraged to respond to the Department for Education’s consultation on Elective Home Education, following their interest in this topic earlier in the year. Ian clarified that there were two key issues, which were the requirement to register by parents of all EHE children and the right for the LA to monitor children who are EHE. The Local Authority will be submitting a response and the LSCB would also circulate a draft response.
  • The substance misuse strategic report was deferred to the next meeting.


Agency Updates


Karen Frost informed the Board of concerns that had arisen in respect of a local community hall’s use of CCTV. A joint letter from the LSCB and Local Authority had gone out to all community venues and Early Years providers reminding them of best practice in respect of data protection and safeguarding children. The Board is supporting groups in reviewing their policies and has been commissioned to provide training to strengthen governance of facilities across the borough. The LSCB had considered how best to share learning with other LSCBs, as it was suspected that the issue was not unique to Bracknell Forest.


Lisa McNally reported that there was a rising trend of secondary school children piercing their own ears with shared hypodermic needles. All children involved had been given Hepatitis B vaccinations and the health risk was assessed to be low, but guidance had been created for schools to avoid future incidents.


Karen Roberts reported that Nick Young, former DAPS worker had moved into the Assistant Team Manager role in the Exploitation team. Oliver Lanping had been appointed as the new DAPS worker.


Jane Fowler commented that as Jayne Reynolds had gone on secondment, Heidi Illsley was the new interim Deputy Director of Nursing at BHFT.


Ian Dixon advised that EWOs had been recruited. Ian also advised that he was leaving at the end of the month and so the management of Targeted Services would be shared between managers until the function has been located within the Council’s new People directorate.


Alex Walters commented that it was also Catherine Bates’ last Board meeting before her retirement. Alex thanked Catherine and Ian for their valuable contributions to the Board. Catherine was in the process of seeking a replacement Primary Headteacher representative.


Alex also congratulated Lisa McNally on her formal appointment to Director of Public Health.


Overview of current developments with SEN


Kashif Nawaz, Interim Head of SEN presented the current developments with SEN.


It was noted that Bracknell Forest had received a ministerial compliment to recognised that all SEN ‘statements’ had been converted to EHCPs.


Kashif highlighted the following areas of work for the SEN team:


Principle One: Involving children and young people, parents and carers in decisions involving them and to promote independence and autonomy during the transition to adulthood


Kashif noted that all young people with EHCPs had been sent a survey of Personal Outcomes Education Tool (POET) to assess the difference an EHCP had made. The responses were being collated into a report to inform future service direction.


Local internships for young people with EHCPs were being developed, and it was hoped that the first pilot cohort would be working by September 2018.


Principle Two: Ensure inclusion and participation in all aspects of family, educational and community life in a local and inclusive setting.


An SEN task group had been established to broaden the scope of inclusion across services. The group met weekly and had action plans for each of its strands of work.


The Headteacher’s SEND strategy group would be reviewed and membership revised prior to it being formally relaunched.


Frank Glennon would continue to manage the Education Psychology team and the EHCP oversight process.


With regard to specialist place planning, there was a particular need for alternative provision in the primary phase.


Principle Three: Minimising use of resources out of borough.


Kashif reminded the Board of the impending Local Area SEND Inspection, which would assess the experiences of particularly vulnerable groups across partner agencies.  The inspection would result in a narrative report and would not be graded. It was noted that although schools would be assessed, this would be at a strategic level and no lesson inspections would take place.


In response to questions, the following points were noted:

  • West Berkshire were about to have their Local Area SEND inspection , and it was agreed that the outcome of this would be useful learning for all partners.
  • It was noted that the last referrals into the Channel Panel had been children with additional needs.
  • The South East Directors meeting had commented that in the region, underperformance at school had been an issue for those children who had SEND needs and were in receipt of Pupil Premium Grant. It was stressed that Ofsted would focus on this group when inspecting schools.
  • The difference between those who had an EHCP and those children requiring SEN support was noted, as SEN support was often unidentified by the Local Authority as it was provided direct from the school. To get an EHCP in place, Headteachers were required to gather two terms of evidence of a child’s needs.
  • Additional SENCO support had been provided for four schools in Bracknell Forest and would develop best practice.
  • Shared Quality Assurance visits with Headteachers were being piloted in order to support officers visited children in out of borough specialist education provision.
  • It was  ...  view the full minutes text for item 3.


Broadmoor Hospital 2016-17 and 2017-18


David Cochrane, Broadmoor attended the meeting to present the annual reports for 2016-17 and 2017-18 on Child Visits.


Broadmoor Hospital was one of three secure hospitals in England, and provided 210 beds for male patients who had committed serious offences in the context of a mental disorder. Where patients had child relatives who wished to visit, a child visit could be undertaken if it met the agreed criteria.


Broadmoor’s sister hospital, Ashworth Hospital, had experienced difficulties with its child protection arrangements which had resulted in an inquiry and directions being issued by the Department for Health which underpinned the annual reports.


The number of child visits at Broadmoor was low.  In 2018, there had been around 192 patients. All patients wishing to receive a child visit were required to complete a form for submission to their clinical team, the Child Visits panel and to their home Local Authority for assessment. In 2017/18, 20 children had been approved for child visits with 14 of these having made one or more visits. Most of the children who had visited were brothers or half-brothers of patients. It was stressed that the number of child visitors was low, and that this in part reflected the family structure of patients during this period. Feedback from children via questionnaire had been broadly positive.


A dedicated child visits suite in the hospital ensured that visitors did not come into contact with any other patient, and it is assessed as functioning well.


There were plans for the government to review the directions issued for safety and security of high secure hospitals, although it remained unclear whether child visits would be within its scope. If any changes were proposed, a consultation would be undertaken. It was thought that future directions could give hospitals more discretion around phone calls between patients and child relatives.


A CQC inspection of Broadmoor was due in the first week of June 2018.


It was noted that the Director of Safeguarding was currently seconded elsewhere in the Trust, and the vacancy had not yet been filled.


Broadmoor had submitted a mid-term review to the pan-Berkshire LSCB S11 panel who had been assured by the quality of their submission.


It was commented that the opening date for the new hospital was not yet clear. Partners were welcome to visit the new child visit suite.


The Board thanked David for his report.


In response to questions, the following points were noted:

  • Local Authority assessment of Child Visit applications were undertaken if necessary. The clinical team at Broadmoor included allocated social workers who conducted internal assessments.
  • Members of the LSCB were encouraged to have input into the review of regulations.
  • Bracknell Forest’s Children’s Social Care felt that the child visits process was child focussed, and that the feedback from child visitors was very useful.


Annual Domestic Abuse Report 2017-18


Karen Roberts presented the Domestic Abuse report 2017-18 on behalf of Sophie Wing-King.


Nick Young had been the chair of the DA Executive group until he moved to take up a new post, and there would be an election of chair at the next meeting of the group.


Locally, reports of Domestic Abuse suggest that there had been a reduction in cases, although repeat rates had increased from 20.6% to 24.2%. It was noted that this remained the lowest repeat rate in Thames Valley area. The Community Safety Team were undertaking an audit to assess the reason for the increase. A report on this would come to the LISG. (Action: Sarah Roberts)


There had also been a decrease in the number of MARAC cases, and the ratio of referrals remained the same as previous years. There was an improved spread of referrals from all agencies in contrast to past years when the LSCB had raised concerns about partners practice.


The Domestic Abuse strategy and action plan had been rewritten in 2017 and would be reviewed in 2020.


There had been a high percentage of DAPS referrals for men who had never engaged. If referrals were connected to social care cases, all non-engagement would now be logged and raised within CiN /CP meetings.


The LSCB commented that although the report had lots of evidence of activity, further evidence of impact would be welcomed in future reports.


Arising from discussion, the following points were noted:

  • It was noted that Bracknell Forest had a good referral rate, but due to low referral rates across Berkshire, all opportunities to promote MARAC would continue to be taken.
  • It was suggested that further insight into the reasons for referral refusal may inform future practice.
  • The Board noted that the Family Safeguarding Model addressed the ‘toxic trio’, and it was hoped that this would prove to impact on Domestic Abuse.
  • The Board suggested that it was difficult to fully understand the reason for repeat rates for Domestic Abuse as they may reflect increased victim confidence in reporting multiple instances, although further clarity was required.


Family Safeguarding Model presentation


Lorna Hunt gave a presentation on the Family Safeguarding Model.


As previously reported Bracknell Forest had bid for funding to extend the Hertfordshire Family Safeguarding Model, with Luton, Peterborough, West Berkshire and Bracknell Forest.


Since the Family Safeguarding Model had been implemented in Bracknell Forest, Child Protection Plans had reduced by 49%, repeat Domestic Abuse had decreased by 66%, and Children Looked After had decreased by 10%. Expenditure had decrease by £3.6m, and school attendance had increased by 36%.


Successful recruitment had been undertaken to fill specialist posts, and the model had been rolled out across Children’s Social Care, Early Help and Housing.


Parenting Programme training had been embedded in practice, and group supervisions were planned. Motivational Interviewing was also being embedded across all teams. 


A Family Safeguarding Executive Board had been established to cover West Berkshire and Bracknell Forest, and the sustainability of the funding model was a key issue to the Board.


York Consulting were assessing the impact of the model, and had chosen 10 families to engage with. (Action: Lorna Hunt to share findings with the LISG as available)


Lorna shared helpful and detailed case studies to reiterate the impact of the model.


A business case and sustainability plan for the model was being developed by the Council’s senior management.


The LSCB thanked Lorna for her presentation. In response to questions, the following points were noted:

  • The Board commented on the significant impact evidenced by the data. 
  • Family judges were being worked with to avoid delays through the courts.
  • Embedding sessions for motivational interviewing were being held to follow up on the initial training for staff. A cue card was also available, and the Board requested this be shared.
  • The 8 Module Parenting Programme focussed on the parent’s history and was an assessment tool to help parents recognise their impact on their children. Some families would go on other parenting programmes following this course.
  • Lots of case audits had been undertaken to try and evidence the difference the model had made. It was felt that co-location of staff had been challenging, but an important feature of the approach. 
  • Ofsted inspectors had been invited to see the model operating to ensure they understood it before it was formally inspected.
  • It was noted that the Early Help and Family Intervention Team were embedding the model to ensure consistency across Early Help and Children’s Social Care.
  • It was noted that succinct recording had been difficult for social workers in the past, and that the new model ensured the impact was better captured with less narrative. An example of the new recording practice could be brought to the Board at a future presentation.


MASH Function Review


The LSCB received the MASH Function Review report prepared in November 2017.


A 6 monthly review report would be going to the MASH Board next month, and it was expected to evidence further progress.


The report evidenced multi-agency engagement from Health, Education Safeguarding and Early Help professionals. The Board noted confusion around the Health representation, and whether the Health co-ordinators or health visitors were the best representatives for the MASH. Lorna Hunt agreed to raise this with Heather Owoo.


The MASH was now located at Time Square, and this was reported to be working well.


The Board expected the next MASH report to come to their September 2018 meeting.


Pan-Berks Policy and Procedures Sub-group update


Jonathan Picken presented the Pan-Berkshire Policy and Procedures Sub-group Update.


Jonathan thanked Esther Blake, Business Manager at Reading for her hard work chairing and organising the work programme for the group.


The group had reviewed a number of policies including:

  • Child Protection Conference and Pre-birth assessments
  • Policies for children moving across Local Authority borders
  • Neglect policy
  • Making allegations against staff and volunteers


The impact of racism and the point at which this became a safeguarding issue had also been discussed. The group had also discussed the need for policy changes to reflect gang activity.


The group had a very positive approach and had undertaken a good deal of work during the year. A newsletter for information was circulated regularly to update on changes to Policies and Procedures, and Board representatives were encouraged to disseminate this to staff.


Business Plan LSCB Safeguarding Plan Review


Jonathan Picken presented the LSCB Safeguarding Plan review.


It was commented that there were some amendments to wording to be implemented following recent discussions. Consultation on the key priorities had been undertaken with the Board and also widely with partners.


Any feedback was welcomed from the Board, however the importance of finalising the report by the end of June was stressedand it would be circulated to the LSCB electronically.


LSCB Audits Action Tracker


The Board noted the LSCB Audits Action Tracker, and recognised the following updates:

  • The Child Sexual Abuse Audit actions had been agreed but not yet formally reviewed by the Learning and Improvement Subgroup, but the Board was assured that progress was positive.
  • The Training Needs Analysis was ongoing, and it was hoped that further information would be available by the next Board meeting. (Action: Jonathan Picken)
  • The Board noted the proposed 2018-19 audits and surveys.


With regard to Training Needs Analysis, it was noted that while all partners preferred face to face training, the cost of sending an individual on a training course could be prohibitive. The advantages and limitations of online training were recognised and would feature within future programmes.


Proposal for joint Training and Communication Subgroup


Jonathan Picken informed the Board of plans to bring together the Training and Professional Development sub-group with the Communications sub-group. The Terms of Reference were being rewritten to ensure no gaps were missed.


Both groups had endorsed proposals, which were hoped to make most effective use of capacity available.


LSCB Risks and Challenge Log

·         Review of existing log

·         Any new challenges or risks to include from partners


The LSCB received and noted the LSCB Risks and Challenges Log and noted the number which were completed and those that would roll forward to 18/19.


The governance and oversight of FGM in Bracknell Forest was still being discussed, and a report containing recommendations would be presented at a future meeting. (Action: Jonathan Picken/Alison Burnell)


It was noted that the executive summary reports would be used to minimise the papers circulated for Board meetings. Full reports would be circulated electronically where possible.




Julia Powers commented that a survey had been circulated for mandatory Domestic Abuse training for CAFCASS and children’s social care staff, although the Board commented that it was not a formal petition from an organisation.


Lisa McNally commented that the first data had been published for Health Visitors in Bracknell Forest since BHFT had been re-commissioned. Child development data had shown that the percentage of children achieving the expected level or above is 92% was one of the highest results in the country, compared to a national average of 78%.


Alex Walters commented on the report received from the CCG that the Child Protection Information System implementation had made good progress and had enabled health providers to access electronic information about those subject to Child Protection plans.


The Board thanked Ian Dixon and Catherine Bates for their contributions to the Board, and wished them well for the future.


Date of Next Meeting

13 July 2018


13 July 2018


Information Items (circulated electronically)

·         Interim Report of the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse

·         Pan-Berkshire Policies and Procedures Forward Plan (Jan 2018)


The Board noted the following information items which were circulated electronically:

·         Interim Report of the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse

·         Pan-Berkshire Policies and Procedures Forward Plan (Jan 2018)