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Blame games make the job of a DCS untenable

Last Friday, the Reading Post published a story about how children's services in the town received only one application for each of the three senior social worker jobs it advertised. On the same day, the Coventry Telegraph reported that 30 demonstrators had gathered outside the city's town hall calling for more action to be taken against the agencies involved in the Daniel Pelka case.

Progress in joint working must go on

The decision last week to strip the Children's Workforce Development Council (CWDC) of government funding will inevitably raise concerns that any genuine "development" of the workforce will stall. A plan for how the Department for Education intends to take forward the quango's work is yet to be articulated.

Policy into practice Looked-after children

The issue: Around 60,000 children in England are in care at any one time. Many of them have suffered traumatic experiences, abuse or neglect. The transition to new adult carers in unfamiliar settings can add to their stress without extended families, friends and siblings around to offer support.

Haringey needs intensive support

Who would want to work in Haringey children's services? As we reveal this week, care proceedings in the London borough soared after Baby P's death dominated the news.

Will sanctions or support ward off trouble?

One element of the "triple track" response in the new Youth Taskforce Action Plan is the idea of non-negotiable support. Some will immediately baulk at the concept: surely support has to be wanted to be effective?

Prevention is far better than any cure

A preventive approach to support for children and young people has emerged as a clear priority within the reconfigured Department for Children, Schools and Families.

Care experience central to England review

The new government has committed to conduct a review of the children’s care system. We are at a pivotal point: 30 years on from the game-changing 1989 Children Act, this review will either go down in history as being another major turning point or a damp squib.

Social mobility talk not matched by reality

There is no doubt that the divide between the rich and the rest has become significantly greater over the past few years, with two seminal events along the way - the financial crash of 2007/08 and the election of the coalition government in 2010.

A very tall order with a short deadline

Across the country, newly formed local teams are embarking on a colossal exercise. In every area, local authorities have until next month to quantify how many troubled families live in each area and set out how they are going to help them turn their lives around.

Vulnerable children still need monitoring

How has the world of children's services changed in the past year? By far the biggest change has been the cuts in budgets -- indeed, it can be difficult to focus on anything else.

Harm of drinking during pregnancy lasts a lifetime

On 19 January 1725, The London College of Physicians told the House of Commons: "We do think it our duty humbly to represent that we have concern observed... the frequent use of several sorts of distilled Spirituous Liquors... and too often the cause of weak, feeble, distempered children, who must be instead of advantage and strength, a charge to their country."

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