Agenda item

Performance figures aligned to the Corporate Parenting Strategy

The Director of Children’s Care and the Analytics Manager will provide a report and presentation to the Board (information to follow)



The Analytics Manager was in attendance and provided the Board with information relating to the Corporate Parenting Board scorecard.


The main points to note were as follows:


Numbers and trends

CP1- Number of children in care in Middlesbrough-Trend


                  Children looked after numbers have vastly improved, dropping down below the 550 mark for the first time in 13 months and continue to decrease month on month.

                  Children looked after were down 19% in comparison to the same point last year and 24% down in comparison to the highest number recorded in July-2020 at 692.

                  In recent months between May and June this year Children looked after have decreased by 2.1%, below the 2020-21 target.


CP2- Gap between Middlesbrough and Regional Children in care Rate per 10,000 – Trend


                  The rate of Looked after Children per 10,000 started to steadily decline in August-2020, recently reaching the lowest rate in 13 months at 56.51 - a 8.4% decrease in comparison to the same point last year.

                  Though still remain above all external benchmarks, we are showing significant improvement.


CP3. Ratio of children entering to leaving care – Trend


                  The ratio of children starting a period of care was showing a steep decline, while those ceasing a period of care is showing a sharp increase. The ratio of children entering to leaving care was down by 81% in June-21, in comparison to the highest point in Aug/Sept-20. The current value is below the 2020-21 target.


CP4. Proportion of total CS budget spent on CiC services – Trend


                  The proportion of total Children's Services budget spend on Children in Care services has improved significantly since Sept-20 at 79.40%.

                  Though in comparison to Q4 2020-21 the proportion has increased by 1.4% in Q1 2021-22, remaining above the 2020/21 Target by 3.3%.


CP5. FTE Caseloads between 15-20 – Trend


                  FTE Caseloads between15-20 reveals the peak caseload % was in January -2021 at 41.80%, still 2.9% below the 2020-21 target.

                  The steady decline started in February -2021, slightly peaking in May- 2021, improving to 28% in June-21.




CP6. Average number of weeks children spend in care (Ceasing Care in Month) – Trend


                  The average number of weeks’ children spend in care displays peaks in January 2020, with the highest recorded in Aug-20 at 361.00, a 162.45% difference between the lowest number of weeks recorded in June-2020.

                  Since the peak, the average number of weeks have improved, falling below the 2020-21 Target. This highlights the positive turnaround for children in care, with increases in those ceasing care month-on-month.


CP7. % of CiC where plan of permanence has been ratified – Trend


                  The % of children in care where a plan of permanence has been agreed gradually increased month-on month, recently exceeding the 2021-21 target by 4% in June-21. This highlights that the timeliness of permanence agreements are significantly improving.


CP8. % of permanence arrangements resulting in Special Guardianship Order (SGO) –Trend


                  The % of permanence arrangements resulting in SGO was above the 2020-21 target, 20%, across all recorded months. The highest recorded % was in November-2020 at 30%, a 6% difference in comparison to June-2021 at 24%.


CP9. % of Children in Care placed with parents on care orders at home – Trend


                  The number of Children in Care placed with care orders at home exceeds the 2020/21 target across all months, peaking in Sept-2020 at 15%. In recent months the % has slowly declined, reaching the lowest in June-21 at 11%, a 2% decrease in comparison to 13 months prior.


CP10. % of CiC secured in adoptive placements VS % of Children Adopted – Trend


                  The number of children that secured an adoptive placement remains relatively stable, reaching 4% in July/Aug-20. The significant improvement of CLA numbers in the last 6 months has had an impact on the slight decline in both the number adoptive placements and the number of children adopted.


CP11. Average time in days between entering care and placed in adoptive placement- Trend


                  There was no data due to ALB who do the data for the country had changed the indictor, and therefore there were finding a slightly different indicator and would report at the next meeting.


Sufficiency and Placements


CP12 % of CiC placed outside of 20 miles of home postcode - 12 Month Trend


                  The % of children in care placed outside of 20 miles of home postcode remained above the 2020-21 target, 15%. The % remained relatively stable ranging from the lowest recorded % in Nov/Dec-2017 at 17% to the highest recorded in June-21 at 20%. The average % of children in care placed outside of 20 miles of home postcode averages at 18% over the last 13 months.


CP13 and CP14 - 12 Month Trend (% of Children in care placed in in-house foster placements VS % of Children in care placed with Connected Carers)


                  The % of children in care placed with Connected Carers continues to be the higher % of placement types, accounting for 21.8% of all CLA placements in June-2021. Though the % of In-house foster carer placements showed a steady improvement since Feb-20, reaching 21.7% in June-2021 - only 0.1% difference when comparing to Connected Carers. Both placement types began to outperform the 2020-21 targets in May-2021.


CP15 and CP16 - 12 Month Trend (% of Children in care in residential placements VS % of Children in care in external residential placements)


                  The % of children in residential placements and external residential placements remain above the

                  2020-21 targets across all recorded months.

                  The actual number of residential and external residential placements has remained stable but increased as a proportion of the overall CLA total, which itself is decreasing dramatically.

                  The % Children looked after in residential placements has reached 14% in June-2021, a 1.6% increase in comparison to 13 months prior, and the % of external residential placements reached 9.3%.


CP17. % of CiC in single placements in last 12 months - 12 Month Trend


                  The % of children in care in single placements in the last 12 months has remained below the 2020-2021 target in all months recorded, other than in March- 2021 when the % peaked to 85.5% - 15.5% above the outlined benchmark.

                  The % declined since the peak, reaching 64.9% in June-2021.


CP18. % of Care Leavers remaining with former foster parents – Trend


                  The % of Care Leavers remaining with former foster parents began to gradually improve in March-21, recently reaching the highest % recorded in May-2021 at 13.1% - a 2.1% increase in comparison to 13 months prior.

                  Care Leavers remaining with former foster parents slightly declined in June-21 but still remains above the 2020-21 target.


CP19. % of CiC/CL placement breakdowns in last 12 months


                  The % of children in care/care leaver breakdowns in the last 12 months seen a considerable decrease

                  since Jan-21, reaching the lowest recorded in May-2021.

                  The % increased in June-21 by 0.7%, though this could be due to the increase in Care Leavers and

                  Children looked after ceasing care.


Quality and Impact


CP20. % of FFF young people who were on the edge of care and did not become Looked After

                  The % of FFF young people who were on the edge of care and did not become CLA has been relatively stable, with a steep decline in Nov-20 when the number of children in care was relatively high.

                  In recent months the % has been 100% - 20% above the 2020-2021 target.


CP21. Number of IRO challenges resolved at Stage 1 or 2 (i.e. informally or first formal stage)

           The number of IRO challenges resolved at Stage 1 or 2 was extremely low in September-2020, and has seen steep increases across recent months - reaching 100% in December-2020, February-2021 and April-2021.


CP22. % of Post 16 Children in care in Education, employment and Training  Trend


           The % of Children in Care Post 16 in EET continued to improve in recent months, reaching the highest % recorded in April-2021 at 70%, since declining 1% in May/June-2021 which still remains above the 65% 2020-2021 Target.


CP23 - % of Care Leavers in Education, employment and Training   - Trend


           The % of Care Leavers in EET remained relatively stable across all recorded months, until Nov-20

           when the % started to decline - reaching the lowest % in March-21 at 39%.

           However the % increased by 4% in June-21, at 43% - remaining below the 2020-21 Target.



CP24 - % of Care Leavers in Suitable Accommodation – Trend


                  The % of Care Leavers in suitable accommodation out performed the 2020-21 target from November to December 2020 - reaching 96%.

                  This was followed by a slight decline in March- 2021, reaching 86%, which increased by 3%, to 89% in June-21.




The Manager was thanked for this presentation, following which a number of questions were raised:


Firstly a member queried why single placements had increased. In response, the Director advised that generally it was usually if the child had complex needs. Sometimes being in a group isn’t for the child and the emotional, health and wellbeing of the child and young people was paramount.


With regards to Children and young people being placed 20 miles away, the Chair queried what was being done to address this.  The Director advised that wherever possible, the Local Authrity try to place children in Middlesbrough and are trying to recruit foster carers. Middlesbrough do have their own children’s homes as well as future for families (edge of care to prevent young people entering care) and Daniel Court (9 beds for young people).  A child or young person may have to placed outside the areas due to their needs, however this would require Director approval. Middlesbrough has been successful in bringing back some young people into foster placements with the help from Future for families and Innovate.


Future for families have been working with Innovate have looked at the number of children and young people who have been placed outside the area but can be returned to Middlesbrough. Future for Families currently have 3 young people living in the Hub and are working for 43 young people who they are working with to try and prevent them entering care.


A member queried what proportion of foster carers working with Middlesbrough live outside the borough and it was advised that this information would be provided at a future meeting.


Another Board member enquired about staff within social care, in terms of their Caseloads./ welfare of staff/ satisfaction rates of social workers


In response, the Director advised that there were currently three managed teams, the first aligned to the looked after children service, and the others assigned to assessment service and are working to help reduce numbers of caseload numbers.

Caseload numbers have come down for some social workers, average caseload was 19.6 but within the Children looked after it was slightly lower between 15 and 19. Caseloads were regularly reviewed.


The Council do have agency workers however most recently had launched a workforce development strategy and within the Strategy, there was a section on recruitment and retention. The Council were looking for experienced social workers and have factored in a golden hello to ensure our salary was matched with neighbouring authorities and after a year they fall in line with the retention wage.


A question was raised as to whether it would be possible to take on apprentice social workers, who would then become experienced social workers. In response, the Director outlined that Middlesbrough do grown their social workers and welcome talented people and who have resource workers who are talented. However due to the complex cases, it was not possible to address this was possible.


Lastly, the education of our children looked after was posed and the Head of Virtual Schools, advised that during Covid, children have continued to attend school and most thrived having the smaller ratios during lockdown.  Key stage 4 and GSCE results would be analysed and sent to the Virtual school government body prior to being presented to the CPB.


AGREED- That the date be noted.