Agenda item

Corporate Parenting Strategy

(To receive a report from Andrew Morris, Corporate Parenting Manager, which invites the Committee to consider and comment on the content of Corporate Parenting Strategy)


The Committee gave consideration to a report from Andrew Morris, Corporate Parenting Manager, which invited the Children and Young People Scrutiny Committee to consider the content of the Strategy, and to endorse the process of embedding Corporate Parenting into the Council's culture.


Janice Spencer, Assistant Director, Safeguarding presented the report and highlighted to the Committee that the Council had a legal Corporate Parenting responsibility to all of its Looked After Children and Care Leavers.  A copy of the Corporate Parenting Strategy 2018 – 2021 was attached to the report at Appendix A for the Committee's consideration.  It was highlighted that the strategy was a document designed to help embed Corporate Parenting across the Council to ensure the responsibility of parenting the Council's children and care leavers was at the forefront of Council thinking when making decisions and designing services.


The Committee was advised that the Corporate Parenting Strategy would be presented to the Council meeting on 14 September 2018 for consideration and to ensure wider member commitment to the responsibilities of being a Corporate Parent.


It was highlighted that Looked after Children and Young People and Care Leavers should have the same care, nurturing, health and wellbeing; and life chances as any other child or young person. Pages 19/20 identified what responsible parenting involved.  


The strategy provided information as to the role of a 'Corporate Parent'; the commitment in Lincolnshire for all Looked After Children; and the responsibility for all, which included the seven Corporate Parenting Principles; the universal responsibilities within the Council in conjunction with governing bodies of partner agencies; the targeted responsibilities for elected members who visited Children's Homes; and specialist responsibilities of the Executive Councillor for Children's Services, the Executive Director of Children's Service's and the Chairman of the Corporate Parenting Sub-Group.


During discussion, the Committee raised the following points:-


·         The need to ensure that all Councillors were aware of the strategy and the responsibilities of being a Corporate Parent.  It was reported that elected members were making more contact with Looked After Children, with visits to the Big Conversation Event and V4C meetings; and other social occasions; as well visiting children's homes.  One member stressed that as Looked After Children were very vulnerable, that everything should be done that possibly could be done to help the young person; and that it was essential that the strategy was taken on board by all; and embedded within the day to day work of the Council.  A suggestion was made that the strategy needed to be brought to life when presented to the Council on 14 September 2018; 

·         The championing of provision of Council based work placements and Apprenticeships for looked after young people.  The Committee was advised that the Care Leavers Apprenticeship Scheme was provided through Barnardo's; and that there were between 10 and 12 placements per year.  It was reported that more work was being done within the Council with managers to see if more apprenticeships could be made available to care leavers.  It was highlighted that in relation to full-time jobs following an apprenticeship with the Council, care leavers had priority status.  One member enquired whether more information could be received relating to apprenticeships. The Committee was advised that the Corporate Parenting Sub-Group would be looking at Apprenticeships in more detail; and

·         Some members felt that Corporate Parenting refresher training was needed to be undertaken, which should make reference to the changes relating to providing support to care leavers up to the age of 25.


Note: Councillor M A Whittington wished it to be noted that he had an interest in the Lincolnshire County Council Children's Services as a parent of an adopted child.


The Chairman extended his thanks to the Corporate Parenting Manager and his team for all their hard work in driving forward the responsibilities of a Corporate Parent.




1.    That the Corporate Parenting Strategy be received and that endorsement be given to the process of embedding Corporate Parenting into the Council's culture. That Officers look into how the Strategy was to be presented to the Council meeting on 14 September 2018.


2.    That Corporate Parenting refresher training be arranged, to include the changes in legislation that had come into force on 1 April 2018, relating to providing support to Care Leavers up to the age of 25.

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