UPDATE NO 422 25 September 2020

Newsletters If you would like to know more about these workstreams or the others in the Programme, click on the main section icons shown above. At SESLIP we are always on the look-out for good ideas that might be better implemented regionally rather than locally. If you have any suggestions, please contact Richard Tyndall, SESLI […]

Three children playing happily together


If you would like to know more about these workstreams or the others in the Programme, click on the main section icons shown above.

At SESLIP we are always on the look-out for good ideas that might be better implemented regionally rather than locally. If you have any suggestions, please contact Richard Tyndall, SESLI Programme Manager (details below). 

Our Regional Improvement Plan for 2020-2021 can be found here.

UPDATE NO 422 25 September 2020


NAO report on Financial Sustainability of Colleges


The NAO has published a report on the Financial Sustainability of Colleges.

The full report is herea summary report is herean e-briefing is hereand a press release is here

Action Required:

The NAO concludes

Overall, the financial health of the college sector remains fragile. Ofsted inspection ratings suggest that colleges are generally maintaining educational quality, but other evidence shows that financial pressures are affecting wider aspects of provision such as the breadth of the curriculum and levels of student support. The programme of area reviews led to structural change and had some success in making the college sector more financially secure. The Department is now formulating a strategic reform programme intended to remedy systemic long-term weaknesses in the sector. This is a welcome development but, until such a programme is in place and achieving results, we cannot conclude that the Department is responding effectively to the financial sustainability challenges that colleges are facing.



The Long Shadow of Deprivation


The Social Mobility Commission has published a report The long shadow of deprivation: Differences in opportunities across England.

The full report is accompanied by data tables and a technical annex

Action Required:

Where you grow up matters: in areas with the highest social mobility, disadvantaged individuals aged around 28 earn more than twice as much as their counterparts in the areas of lowest mobility (over £20,000 compared with under £10,000). Put simply, two equally disadvantaged sons with the same family background will earn very different amounts as adults, based simply on where they grew up.


Brighton and Hove named in MJ’s top ten for High Needs provision


On 30 August, Municipal Journal published an IMPOWER study which analysed oucomes against spend for High Needs provision for SEND young people aged 0-25.

The report named ten councils in the “High Outcomes/Low spend” quadrant; Brighton and Hove were the only South East Council.

Action Required:

Leo Jones, Director of Impower said,

we are publishing a list of the best performers in alphabetical order, as the purpose of the Index is to spark debate and learning rather than simply encourage a narrow focus on the rankings”

The other nine councils are: Calderdale, Cornwall, East Riding of Yorkshire, Havering, Hertfordshire, Leeds, Nottingham City, Nottinghamshire, Sheffield, York

Reminders from previous weeks


Unregulated – Children in care living in semi-independent accommodation


The Children’s Commissioner for England has called for the Government to change the law to stop councils placing under 18s in care in unregulated accommodation. 

The full report is here.

Action Required:

The change would see all children in care who need a residential placement housed in accommodation regulated under the same standards as children’s homes, and would put an end to 16 and 17 year olds being placed in bedsits, hostels and caravans. The call comes as the Children’s Commissioner publishes a report, Unregulated: Children in care living in semi-independent accommodation, revealing how thousands of children in care are living in unregulated independent or semi-independent accommodation. These settings are not inspected and children living there often go without regular support from adults.


Limitations of Machine Learning in the context of Children’s Services


There is no evidence that using machine learning to predict outcomes for families involved with children’s social care services is effective, research has found. 


The summary report is hereThe technical report is here.

Action Required:

Models built by What Works for Children’s Social Care and trialled over 18 months in four local authority areas failed to identify, on average, four out of every five children at risk. The research found introducing text information extracted from social work reports did not reliably improve models’ performance, despite this offering a more nuanced picture of families than can be gleaned from demographic information and data tracking interactions with practitioners.


Independent Inquiry Sexual Abuse Recommendation to LGA


The Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abusechaired by Professor Alexis Jay OBE,  has recommended that the LGA should produce a code of practice for responding to civil claims of child sexual abuse. This recommendation has been accepted by the LGA.

The specific recommendations are here

Action Required:

The code should include recognition of the long-term emotional and psychiatric or psychological effects of child sexual abuse on victims and survivors, and acknowledgement that these effects may make it difficult for victims and survivors to disclose that they have been sexually abused and to initiate civil claims for that abuse.

The code should also include guidance that:

  • claimants should be treated sensitively throughout the litigation process;
  • the defence of limitation should only be used in exceptional circumstances;
  • single experts jointly instructed by both parties should be considered for the assessment of the claimants’ psychiatric, psychological or physical injuries; and
  • wherever possible, claimants should be offered apologies, acknowledgement, redress and support.

The research report Support services for victims and survivors of child sexual abuse giving the supporting evidence is published in summary and in full.


Guide to the Early Career Framework for Teachers


The DfE has published a Guide to the Early Career Framework for teachers, including information about the approved providers of core induction programmes, from Sept 2021. It has selected four expert teacher training providers who have each developed their own core induction programme based on the Early Career Framework:

Action Required:

Each set of materials cover the five core areas of the ECF (Behaviour Management, Pedagogy, Curriculum, Assessment and Professional behaviours). Although structured differently, each programme contains approximately the same amount of self-study material in terms of hours covered. Schools can use or draw upon any of four core induction programmes published here in whichever way is most beneficial to them and their early career teachers. 

From September 2021, it will become a statutory requirement for all schools to offer, and all early career teachers to undertake, a two-year induction based on the ECF. Next year schools will be able to choose from three approaches to deliver an ECF-based induction to their early career teachers:

Full induction programme; Core induction programme; or School-based programme

More information: An overview of the ECF reformsThe Early Career Framework Policy paper


NAO report on Childhood Obesity


The National Audit Office has published a report on childhood obesity.

The full report is herea summary report is herean e-briefing is hereand a press release is here

Action Required:

The NAO concludes,

Governments have been grappling with childhood obesity since the 2000s, with limited success. In 2018/19, nearly one tenth of 4 to 5 year olds and more than one fifth of 10 to 11 year olds were classified obese. We estimate that roughly 1.4 million children aged from 2 to 15 years old were classified obese in 2018. Not only is obesity increasing for 10 to 11 year olds, it is increasing even faster for children in deprived areas. While the Department’s programme aims to tackle this issue, it is not yet clear that the actions within the programme are the right ones to make the step-change needed in the timescale available. Progress with the programme has been slow and many commitments are not yet in place, although the new strategy announced in July 2020 has signalled new legislation and greater willingness to act to reduce obesity. The government will need to act with greater urgency, commitment, co-ordination and cohesion if it is to address this severe risk to health and value for money.


National Children and Adult Services Conference; 4th – 6th November 2020


This online event will take place over three days, with virtual sessions held on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday 4, 5 and 6 November. These webinars will be delivered by prominent figures in the adult, children and education sectors, including ministers, and as usual, the event will provide excellent opportunities to learn and share best practice with colleagues across central and local government. 

Action Required:

The delegate fee is £100 + VAT per person, which gives access to all sessions over the three days.

Further information and booking details via the NCASC website here.


Future dates for Network meetings


AD Safeguarding: Friday 11 December 2020 –  for more information from Mark Evans (contact details below)

QA Network: Wednesday 9 December. Following the recent meeting of the network, new confidential documents have been posted on the QA restricted pages – access to these pages and more information from Diane Williamson (contact details below)

SEND SE19: more information from Tracey Maytas (contact details below)

Action Required:

Data Benchmarking: Thursday 10 December 2020. The meeting this week (15 Sept) discussed routine business – more information from Alastair Lee (contact details below)

AD EducationToday! and Friday 27 November 2020 – 10.00am to 12.30pm – more information from Chris Owen (contact details below)

Adoption and Special Guardianship Leadership Board: Tuesday 20 October 2020 – more information from Rebecca Eligon (contact details below)

Tools & Templates

We have produced a Regional Improvement Plan which will underpin activities in 2020-2021

Financial sustainability of colleges in England published by NAO 16 September 2020

The long shadow of deprivation published by DfE 15 September 2020

Unregulated – Children in care living in semi-independent accommodation published by the Children’s Commissioner 10 September 2020

Machine Learning in Children’s Services published by What Works for Children’s Social Care 10 September 2020 

Childhood Obesity report by NAO published 9 September 2020

Coronavirus briefing: guidance for social workers published by NSPCC 3 September 2020

Guide to the Early Career Framework for teachers published by DfE 1 September 2020

Support services for victims and survivors of child sexual abuse published by IICSA 31 August 2020

High needs benchmarking tool published by DfE 25 August

No way out – children stuck in B&Bs during lockdown published by the Children’s Commissioner 21 August 2020

A Perfect Storm: The impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on domestic abuse survivors and the services supporting them published by Women’s Aid 18 August 2020

How Safe are our Children? 2020 published by NSPCC 17 August 2020

Promoting the Retention, Mental Health, and Wellbeing of Child and Family Social Workers: A Systematic Review of Workforce Interventions published by What Works Centre 7 August 2020

COVID-19: guidance on supporting children and young people’s mental health and wellbeing published by DfE 4 August 2020

Children’s services omnibus – Wave 5 published by DfE 3 August 2020

Social Worker Fast Track Programmes Review – published by the DfE 21 July 2020

Highlighting an innovative shared approach towards child suicide prevention published 17 July 2020 by NHS Wessex Senate

What explains marked regional variations in infant care – published by NFJO 16 July 2020

Youth Violence Commission – Final Report published 15 July 2020

ADCS has published a discussion paper – Building a country that works for all children post COVID-19 14 July 2020

Getting the grades they’ve earned: Covid-19: the cancellation of exams and ‘calculated’ grades – published by the Education Select Committee on 11 July 2020

2020 NEET and 16- and 17-year-old participation figures published by DfE 9 July 2020

SEND Inspection Preparation: Self Evaluation Framework Peer Review Guidance

The MoC area of the Seslip website now includes the latest versions of key documents, including the:

Contact Details

Data and Information Manager: Luke Ede (East Sussex)


07925 148597

LGA Children’s Improvement Adviser: Alison Michalska (South East Sector-Led Improvement Programme)


07920 727626

Education Network: Chris Owen (South East Sector-Led Improvement Programme)


07825 862330

SESLIP Education Data Group Lead: Daryl Perilli (Brighton and Hove)


South East Grid for Learning – Consortium Manager: Krista Pickering (South East Sector-Led Improvement Programme)


07872 014083

SESLIP Consultant: Isabelle Gregory (South East Sector-Led Improvement Programme)


07931 586784

CSC Workforce, PSW and AD Safeguarding Network Lead: Mark Evans (South East Sector-Led Improvement Programme)


07803 147072

Adoption; Fostering; Kinship and Early Help Regional Networks: Rebecca Eligon (South East Sector-Led Improvement Programme)


07944 996219

SESLI Programme Manager: Richard Tyndall (South East Sector-Led Improvement Programme)


07880 787007

S.E. Region SEND Network Programme Co-ordinator: Sheelagh Sullivan (South East Sector-Led Improvement Programme)