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Damning Ofsted report on children’s home in Harlow

Politics / Mon 6th Jun 2016 at 11:22am

A HARLOW children’s home has been placed into special measures by Ofsted after publish a highly critical report.

The home, which has not been identified, was inspected on May 9th.

It is a privately run home. This was its first inspection.

Amongst the criticisms are:

Medication arrangements in the home require significant improvement in order to ensure that children‟s medical needs are met and their well-being effectively safeguarded.

Suitable arrangements are not in place to effectively guide staff in the management of epilepsy or how to respond to seizures.

The setting does not provide a safe, homely, welcoming environment for children. This is due to poor maintenance and health and safety arrangements.

Suitable arrangements are not in place for the training and instruction of staff in relation to fire procedures.

Risk assessments in relation to the children going missing, the location of the setting and fire safety fail to identify and reflect the particular vulnerabilities of children placed or local environmental risks.

Staff vetting procedures are not sufficiently robust to ensure that children are fully safeguarded from unsuitable people gaining employment within the home.

Poor arrangements for the induction and training of staff have the potential to significantly impact on staff‟s ability to respond to both the day-to-day needs of children and emergency situations.

Exceptionally high turnover of staff and poor staffing arrangements have significantly impacted on the ability of the home to deliver good quality, competent and consistent care for children.

Record management is poor in respect of case files, complaints, significant incidents and restraint.
 Poor leadership and overview of the service, with an inability to effectively identify and address areas of concerns, potentially places children at risk.

Staff smoke in view of children, which does not provide good role modelling or help children to understand the dangers of smoking.

The children’s home strengths

The children enjoy their time with staff with whom they have been able to develop bonds.

The children are making some progress, lead healthier lifestyles and enjoy activities within the community.

The children have fun and enjoy new experiences, such as owning a pet and going on their first holiday.

The children‟s views are listened to and when they raise concerns these are responded to.

Children and their families, although raising some concerns, continue to say this is a good home.

The home demonstrates a strong commitment to children‟s learning and development.

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