Department for Education
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Children’s Minister: Children in care need a stable environment to thrive and succeed

Children’s Minister Delyth Morgan today announced a package of measures to help put the focus clearly on the child in the care system. The minister also today wrote to local authorities to look at ways to bolster support for foster carers.

The measures include:

  • consulting on significant revisions of the National Minimum Standards (NMS) against which Ofsted inspect care settings
  • providing research on how local authorities might improve the stability of permanent placements and better structure their looked after children budgets.

Children’s Minister Delyth Morgan said:

We know that children entering the care system have had troubled childhoods and in many cases need additional support in every area of their lives.

We want the care system to be a positive experience for these children and are determined to do all we can to improve the stability for these children and to ensure, like their peers, that children in care have every opportunity to thrive and succeed.

Research we are publishing today shows us that children in stable, long-term placements achieve much more than children who have a series of temporary placements or whose placements breakdown. We therefore need to urgently address the issue of stability in the care system, the measures we are driving forward from today aim to do just that.

The NMS for fostering, children’s homes and adoption are a key tool in helping to drive up improved outcomes for looked after children, by raising standards in those services at the front line – fostering services, children’s homes and adoption agencies. The proposed changes to these standards include a shift in focus towards improving outcomes and stability for children in the care system.

Delyth Morgan today also wrote to all directors of children’s services to reinforce messages that local authorities must ensure foster carers have full disclosure of a child’s background and experiences. This is to help them make informed decisions about taking a child into their care and to help them provide care that meets the child’s needs. It is hoped that this, coupled with the revised minimum standards will help to further reduce breakdowns of foster care placements.

Further information

The consultation, when published, can be found here 

Research is available here 

Download the minister's letter to all directors of children's services here

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