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Let's adapt our language to 'tell it like it is'

At a recent United Nations meeting, 15-year-old climate activist Greta Thunberg said: "We have to speak clearly no matter how uncomfortable it may be…You are not mature enough to tell it like it is - even that burden you leave to us children."

Time for an end to 'children at risk' headlines

Have I Got News for You has a game based on guessing missing words in headlines. Perusing the papers recently, I noticed a headline: "X is putting children at risk, Xs say". Over the next few days, I read several other articles which this headline would have suited. Before I fill in the gaps, spend a few seconds thinking of a few words that might fit - it won't be hard.

Time to invest in the children's workforce

Ask children's services leaders - whether a director of children's services, head teacher or nursery manager - what motivates their staff, and most will say it's a passion to improve outcomes for children, not the wage that comes with it.

Education cuts undermine SEND reforms

An Ofsted report into the support (or lack of) for children with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND)published in December was reported as a "national scandal". True. But who's to blame?

Right support vital to keep families together

The Clear Blue Waterreport by England's chief social worker Isabelle Trowler and the University of Sheffield is a brave, compelling and defensible reminder of the care we have to take over life-changing decisions about whether and why we think a child should be permanently removed from their birth parents.

Early help must prove it cuts care demand

Graham Allen's 2011 report Early Intervention: The Next Steps makes clear that the real savings from early help lay in its ability to reduce the numbers coming into care to such an extent that fewer high-cost residential facilities would be needed.

Funding and fairness key to schools debate

The speech by shadow education secretary Angela Rayner to the Labour party conference was strong on principle - whatever your view of academies, she has come out strongly in support of a particular vision of education.

Benefits of funded childcare need selling

When searching for reasons for the low take-up of funded childcare for disadvantaged two-year-olds in England, debate has focused on whether providers are being adequately remunerated to create sufficient places.

Strategy must boost youth opportunities

The government's long-awaited Civil Society Strategy recognises the "transformational impact that youth services and trained youth workers" can have on disadvantaged young people.

Letters to the Editor: Youth work focus does not go far enough

Having a statement or policy on youth work, however limited, has been a long time coming. Not since Positive for Youth have we had a definitive refresh of the government's approach to young people, and it looks like the ongoing influence of the youth voice movement, and youth services lobby, has been heard in some quarters.

Incentives are key to halt school exclusions

The education committee's report on exclusions and alternative provisions makes it abundantly clear that the current system is failing some children, and that rising exclusion rates are a reflection of this.

Lessons for commissioners from Carillion

Between the spectacle of President Trump's visit and the drama of Brexit, it would have been easy to miss the report from the Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Committee (PACAC) on the lessons for politicians and public service commissioners following the collapse of Carillion.

LGA study is basis for fairer funding debate

Having worked at a senior level in a shire county (Somerset), a large city (Birmingham), and a medium-sized unitary (Dudley), I didn't need research to tell me that they are all very different.