Who looks out for Children in Care?
When a child goes into care, the Council becomes the Corporate Parent. This means taking collective responsibility (council, councillors, employees, and partner agencies) for providing the best possible care and safeguarding for the children who are looked after by the council.
Being a Corporate Parent has to be one of the most important roles for a local councillor, after all, council’s supports some of the most vulnerable children in society.
So getting Corporate Parenting right is essential. But it’s essential for all councillors not just those with more targeted responsibilities such as the Cabinet Member or members of the Corporate Parenting Board.
Every children deserve the best!
How do we help?
Councillors find it hard to be an effective corporate parent as they are one, or even two steps removed from actually providing the care; think of it like a grandparent who has an interest in making sure that parenting is good - but has little control over how it is done.
For a councillor, being an effective Corporate Parent from a distance can be daunting. They rely on officers and partners to determine and provide the services that children in care need. However our experience shows that there are things that councillors can do for themselves to demonstrate good corporate parenting skills.
Providing councillors with the skills and insight that they need to be effective corporate parents is a key element in improving outcomes - demanding high levels of service, and always asking is it good enough for my child?
We are a leading governance improvement organisation, and have worked with councils and the Local Government Association to help councillors to understand their responsibilities as corporate parents and how they can discharge these effectively. Our Founder and Director Su Turner, has supported many councils to improve their corporate parenting practice. Whether this be a County Council, District Council or partnerships - helping councillors to understand 'how' they can be effective corporate parents has been a key factor of our support.
Our service includes providing:
Short Impact Induction Sessions for councils wishing to improve the impact of their corporate parenting.
More in-depth training for Corporate Parenting Board - our Practical Corporate Parenting Toolkit use exemplars of practice through what we describe as the five modes of a being a councillor: decision-making, ward, representative, influencers and school governor.