Congratulations to Stockton-on-Tees Area Partnership for attaining Quality Lead Redesignation with a Child First Commendation
From the Quality Lead assessment originally undertaken in 2018, it was clear that Stockton-on-Tees has a well-developed and effective team-around-the-child approach within the local area partnership, supported by good data integration systems, lines of communication and liaison, and experienced staff in key positions.
Another praiseworthy feature was a comprehensive package of professional training and development opportunities and regular reviews of the impact of training activity.
Service improvements have continued at pace over the past three years, driven by a Council-wide vision framed in the excellent Tees Framework of Need.
Prevention is very well developed and effective. Targeted staff within the wider service area are available to provide additional support for children working with the Youth Justice Team both pre and post court. This work continues past the statutory intervention stage where needs are identified. The HUDDL, a local initiative, ensures allocation of staff suitable for individual children and families. The Huddl is the “front door” to additional support and members are from Children’s Services and partners – including School Support Officers, Health, Children’s Help & Support and Family Support Services. Many referrals are received from local schools to request support for children who are struggling in school. The Huddl can also forward referrals on to specialist support services such as Daisy Chain for those children who require individualised interventions around learning needs/difficulties.
Education providers, secondary and 16+, are challenged in a positive and evidence-based way to meet the needs of children who, in the past, may have simply been excluded from the “protection” of a full-time mainstream education, leading to positive life outcomes for some of the most vulnerable young people within the area.
An example of this has been the development of a Fair Access Passport, a “strengths-based” approach to placing children back in mainstream provision through the vehicle of an open and transparent Fair Access Protocol that ensures the cooperation and involvement of secondary schools and academies.
There does not appear to be a “one-size-fits-all” ethos or attitude: bespoke solutions around the child are the norm.
This is a highly effective and well-organised local area service, fully deserving of a Child First Commendation.
Well done Stockton-on-Tees!
Click here to find out more about the Youth Justice SEND Quality Awards https://www.microlinkpc.com/education/youth-justice/