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Agenda and minutes

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Contact: Jonathan Moore  0207 527 3308


No. Item


Apologies for Absence

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Apologies were received from Cllr Bossman-Quarshie


Declaration of Substitute Members

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Declarations of Interest

If you have a Disclosable Pecuniary Interest* in an item of business:

§  if it is not yet on the council’s register, you must declare both the existence and details of it at the start of the meeting or when it becomes apparent;

§  you may choose to declare a Disclosable Pecuniary Interest that is already in the register in the interests of openness and transparency. 

In both the above cases, you must leave the room without participating in discussion of the item.


If you have a personal interest in an item of business and you intend to speak or vote on the item you must declare both the existence and details of it at the start of the meeting or when it becomes apparent but you may participate in the discussion and vote on the item.


*(a) Employment, etc - Any employment, office, trade, profession or vocation carried on for profit or gain.

(b) Sponsorship - Any payment or other financial benefit in respect of your expenses in carrying out duties as a member, or of your election; including from a trade union.

(c) Contracts - Any current contract for goods, services or works, between you or your partner (or a body in which one of you has a beneficial interest) and the council.

(d) Land - Any beneficial interest in land which is within the council’s area.

(e) Licences- Any licence to occupy land in the council’s area for a month or longer.

(f) Corporate tenancies - Any tenancy between the council and a body in which you or your partner have a beneficial interest.

 (g) Securities - Any beneficial interest in securities of a body which has a place of business or land in the council’s area, if the total nominal value of the securities exceeds £25,000 or one hundredth of the total issued share capital of that body or of any one class of its issued share capital. 


This applies to all members present at the meeting.

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Minutes of the Previous Meeting pdf icon PDF 477 KB

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The minutes of the meeting held on 29th November 2022 was confirmed as an accurate record and the Chair was authorised to sign them


Chair's Report

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As part of evidence gathering for the scrutiny report, select members of the committee attended a coffee morning with Islington Foster Carers Association on 11th January 2023. The session was useful in obtaining suggestions and advice that can feed into the recommendations of the review.


Additionally, a series of one-to-one testimonials with families who have electively home educated are scheduled for this week (w/c 16th January) and the following week (w/c 23rd January), which will be held over Microsoft Teams and similarly will feed into the recommendations of the review. A visit to the Platform Islington Youth Hub will also be rescheduled and a suggestion from Cllr Jegorovas-Armstrong at the previous scrutiny meeting of 29th November to incorporate evidence from Islington’s Library service will also be  progressed.



Items for Call In (if any)

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Public Questions

For members of the public to ask questions relating to any subject on the meeting agenda under Procedure Rule 70.5. Alternatively, the Chair may opt to accept questions from the public during the discussion on each agenda item.


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External Attendees (if any)

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Making Children Visible Scrutiny Review - Witness Evidence

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The Committee received a presentation from Curtis Ashton, Director of Young Islington, on vulnerable adolescents within the borough. Key points highlighted included detail on:

·       Commissioned Services in 2021-22; there were a number of specialist services that provide services to vulnerable young people during this time, such as Abianda, St Giles Trust, WIPERS and Chance UK

o   Chance UK focus on an intervention and prevention service, provide mentoring to primary school children who are experiencing emotional and behavioural difficulties, who are at risk of educational exclusion, anti-social behaviour and/or criminal behaviour in adolescence and adult early life.

o   Chance UK supported 51 children and families in 2021-22 and delivered 68 1:1 parent-carer sessions to completion. Good outcomes received from their work, with 100% of parents showing increased confidence and skills in parenting.

·       Abianda’s Star Project provides a specialist one-to-one service for young women aged 11-24 affected by gangs, providing support to develop healthy relationships and prevent violence, sexual violence and exploitation.

o   The project delivered 1:1 support to 25 gang affected young women and 63 young women engaged in group work; group work in two Islington secondary schools and two practice sessions. Outcomes included 71% of participants feeling able to keep themselves safe after the intervention ended and 100% feeling their knowledge of sexual violence and exploitation had improved.

o   Islington were one of the few local authorities to obtain additional funding from the Home Office pertaining to interventions for young women that will ensure that Islington can continue to work with Abianda for a further three years.

·       St Giles Trust supports people facing severe disadvantage into sustainable employment, housing and other appropriate support.

o   In 2021-22, 190 people were referred and 184 young people were successfully engaged. 324 successful outcomes were achieved for young people with 90% supported around Education, Training & Employment, 80% achieving a positive outcome in health and wellbeing, 90% supported with interventions around offending behaviour and 70% supported around family and social life matters.

·       Wipers Mentoring Service supports young people aged 11-17, and helps provide a bridge to education, training, and employment.

o   In 2021-22 they delivered mentoring and 1:1 sessions to 39 vulnerable young people, with over 390 hours of mentoring support provided. Support was extended from 3 to 6 months to ensure vulnerable young people’s needs are met. 90% of participants received a minimum of 24 hours support, 60% presented an increase in their ‘hopes, dreams and aspirations’, 70% increase in ‘Education & Work’, 55% received extended monitoring supported and 100% made significant progress across all areas of the programme.

·       MOPAC Disproportionality Crime Fund – Islington as the lead borough of a consortium consisting of Camden, Hackney and Haringey Councils – has been allocated £250,000 to run a Disproportionality Leadership Project.  The funding itself has come from a partnership of MOPAC (The Mayor’s Office for Policing and Crime), London Councils and the Youth Justice Board – with the purpose of tackling systemic issues that contribute to disproportionality in the youth justice system at a local level.  ...  view the full minutes text for item 65.


Executive Member Questions pdf icon PDF 132 KB

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The Committee discussed the questions put to the Executive Member for Children, Young People and Families. Written copies of the responses provided to these questions were circulated to the Committee which were as follows:


Questions from Cllr Sheila Chapman:


1. What can be done to help give social workers a deeper understanding of the day-to-day challenges (practical, emotional, financial) of being a foster carer? Could social workers and prospective foster carers do training together?


All CLA and fostering social workers are provided training in Level One Dyadic Developmental Psychotherapy (DDP) and all foster carers are offered PACE for Parenting training (DDP for all foster carers) to develop understanding of our Practice Model and encourage a deeper understanding between social workers and foster carers.   


Joint training used to be in place but is being re-launched, starting with joint training for foster carers, social workers and YPAs in managing professional relationships, positive endings and child protection, with a view to opening others up as appropriate.  


Fostering staff are co-located with CLA staff, which has assisted with a greater level of working together across teams in the interests of foster carers and the children they care for.    


The fostering team has two ‘fostering champions’ who attend the group supervision of CLA social workers on a rotational basis in order to bring a foster carers perspective to any cases presented.  


The Service Manager raises the fostering perspective at all meetings she attends with colleagues across senior management.  


Trauma formulation meetings are encouraged prior to matches being agreed and at other times where a joint approach is needed.  


Fostering managers regularly invite themselves to other team meetings to keep the perspective of foster carers active in other professionals’ thinking.  



2. When a foster carer adopts a child, they lose a carer's allowance which makes sense but they also lose the support and benefits of being a carer (for example quicker access to mental health support for their young person). Does it make sense for this non-financial support to fall away? Does this disincentivise foster carers from adopting?  


In relation to adoption vs fostering:  


Education: as adopted children, they do still receive priority school places (as with CLA). However, the only other support offered to adoptive families by the Virtual School is at the level of ‘advice and guidance’. For example, the Virtual School Head can advise the school on how best to support the individual child from exclusion and/or how best to use the pupil premium to which they are entitled. Similarly, adoptive parents can contact the Virtual School Head for advice or to answer specific queries.   



Health: whilst there are no specific health offers available to adopted children, Dr Evanson confirms we can support with some things, e.g., waiting lists, on a case-by-case basis but there is no standard offer.   


CAMHS: as with other aspects of health noted above, there are no specific health offers available. However, on a case-by-case basis we can consider support with waiting lists. This would not necessarily result  ...  view the full minutes text for item 66.


Work Programme and Final Scrutiny Initiation Document pdf icon PDF 143 KB

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