Kent County Council receives damning rating from Ofsted

Ofsted inspectors have criticised Kent County Council’s safeguarding and looked-after children’s services.

The council was given the inspectorate’s lowest rank of “inadequate” in 19 areas across the services.

Overall effectiveness of safeguarding and looked-after children services, case planning and the way the council dealt with work with children and families were all given this ranking.

Inspectors also found that the council was failing to improve outcomes for looked-after children in terms of being healthy and happy.

Their report said: “In approximately half of cases seen by inspectors, there were significant concerns about the quality of practice and management; in the worst of these cases, children were left unprotected and were at risk of significant harm.”

They have ordered the council to carry out immediate action to improve case planning and ensure all looked-after children assessments are completed accurately and up-to-date with latest health and school information.

The council’s leader Paul Carter said the council is taking Ofsted’s criticisms “extremely seriously”.

He added: “My energies and those of my cabinet will be absolutely focused on supporting and challenging everybody involved to put right any shortcomings and weaknesses that have been identified by the Ofsted inspection.”