Looked After Children

Details:

Reference Number: 5375
Request Date: 09/01/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1 The number of children currently used by the council as juvenile Covert Human Intelligence Sources (CHIS) 

Q.2 How many of those children are care-experienced (in the care system now or in the past) 

Q.3 The age of each of the children 

Q.4 The ethnic background of each of the children 

Q.5 How long each child has been working as a CHIS at the council 

Q.6 How much each child is paid/ how each child is compensated for working as a CHIS

A. We do not use CHIS's within Northumberland County Council.



Details:

Reference Number: 5452
Request Date: 22/01/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1 How many looked after or fostered children reached care-leaving age in 2018/19?
 
A.1 Care-leaving age has been taken to mean 17 (as the youngest care-leaver cohort is 17 and 18 year olds). Also assumed the requester is asking about how many of our current LAC will reach this age over the course of 2018/19: 28
 
Q.2 Of those, how many requested a personal advisor or further support from the council?
 
A.2 All care leaving young people are allocated an 18+  personal advisor up to the age of 21 years, they are offered ongoing support up to the age of 25 years if they want to access this also.
 
Q.3 Did any of those cease the arrangement for further support or a personal advisor in the same year?
 
A.3 No
 
Q.4 How is further support/personal advisors for care leavers resourced? Ie how many members of staff are there for how many care leavers
 
A.4 There are currently 4 x Social Work Support Assistant Personal advisors holding an average caseload of 30 cases from the ages of 17 up to 21/25
 
Q.5 Is there currently a waiting list or backlog for personal advisors? If so, how long is it?
 
A.5 No
 
Q.6 How many former (including the 2018/19 intake) care leavers in total are currently receiving further support from the council?
 
A.6  109
 
Q.7 Is there a drop-out or disengagement rate recorded? If so, what is it?
 
A.7 No


Details:

Reference Number: 5490
Request Date: 28/01/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1 The number of safeguarding alerts which have been triggered concerning children in children's homes over the last 4 full financial years (including 2017/18) broken down by the following:

Q.1a in total, 

A.1a  6

Q.1b child sexual exploitation safeguarding alerts, 

A.1b  6

Q.1c sexual abuse safeguarding alerts, 

A.1c  0

Q.1d child criminal exploitation safeguarding alerts (frequently 'county lines') 

A.1d  0

Q.2 The number of safeguarding alerts which have triggered an investigation under Organised/Complex Abuse procedures concerning children’s homes and their staff over the last 4 full financial years (including 2017/18). Organised/ Complex Abuse is defined as abuse involving one or more abusers and a number of related or non-related abused children. A definition can be found in Section 8.1 here: http://www.londoncp.co.uk/chapters/organised_complex.html#define

A.2  0

Q.3 Over the last financial year (April 2017- March 2018), on how many occasions where looked after children went missing and were then found, were they found to have been:

Q.3a sexually assaulted or exploited while they were missing

A.3a  0

Q.3b involved in the sale of drugs while they were missing

Please include all known incidences. Most of this information will be produced by Independent Return interviews which are conducted after children in care go missing. The findings are shared with the local authority when produced by a different authority on their behalf. Please see this link for more information:

https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/208528/Statutory_guidance_on_children_who_run_away_or_go_missing_from_home_or_care_consultation_-_final.pdf

A.3b  2

Q.4 Please provide the highest amount paid on all services provided to an individual Looked After Child in the last financial year (2017/18)? 

A.4 Residential Placement £218,582.86

Q.5 Please provide the highest amount paid on semi-independent accommodation for an individual child for the last financial year (2017/18)? 

A.5 Supported Accommodation £74,969.00

This request refers to children's homes only apart from question 5.
 


Details:

Reference Number: 5493
Request Date: 29/01/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Unseen piloted safe accommodation for potentially trafficked foreign migrant children. The service was developed with local authority, police and governmental partners and was Ofsted registered. Through running this service we became aware of some systemic barriers that fundamentally prevent children from accessing the care and protection they need.
 
We would like to know, for each local authority in the UK:
 
Q.1 How many potentially trafficked children you have identified in the last 12 months? 
 
A.1 Less than 5
 
Q.2 How many of these children have been non-UK Nationals? 
 
A.2  0
 
Q.3 Of the children identified what type of care placements have been sought? (foster care, secure, supported accommodation, children’s home, living independently) 
 
A.3  0
 
Q.4 How many children in this cohort have subsequently a) remained in their original placement b) moved to a different placement c) gone missing short-term (72 hours or less) or d) gone missing long-term (over 72 hours)?
 
A.4  0


Details:

Reference Number: 5511
Request Date: 30/01/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1 In the 2018 calendar year how many children did you take into care (either interim of full care orders) where the child concerned was recorded as being transgender?
 
A.1  0
 
Q.2 How many of these children were recorded in your records as undertaking medical or counselling services with a view to having a having a sex change procedure?
 
A.2  0
 
Q.3 In how many of these cases was part of the reason for taking the child into care the friction/dispute/arguments between the parents/carers of the child and the child in relation to this desire to have a sex change procedure?
 
A.3  0


Details:

Reference Number: 5525
Request Date: 01/02/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

I'd like to make a Freedom of Information Request to your Local Authority in relation to children leaving care;

Q.1 Please give the name of your Local Authority?

Q.2 How many children were defined as in care or 'looked after' within your local authority in the following financial years;
a) 2013 - 2014
b) 2014 - 2015
c) 2015 - 2016
d) 2016 - 2017
e) 2017 - 2018
NB – If you do not have the information in financial years please answer (a)2014, (b)2015, (c)2016, (d)2017, (e)2018

Q.3 What was your planned monetary budget set aside solely for children in care in the following financial years;
a) 2013 - 2014
b) 2014 - 2015
c) 2015 - 2016
d) 2016 - 2017
e) 2017 - 2018

Q.4 What did you spend on children in care in the following financial years?
a) 2013 - 2014
b) 2014 - 2015
c) 2015 - 2016
d) 2016 - 2017
e) 2017 - 2018

Q.5 How many care leavers did you support in the following financial years?
a) 2013 - 2014
b) 2014 - 2015
c) 2015 - 2016
d) 2016 - 2017
e) 2017 - 2018
NB – If you do not have the information in financial years please answer (a)2014, (b)2015, (c)2016, (d)2017, (e)2018

Q.6 What was your planned monetary budget set aside solely for leaving care services in the following financial years?
a) 2013 - 2014
b) 2014 - 2015
c) 2015 - 2016
d) 2016 - 2017
e) 2017 - 2018

Q.7 What did you spend on children leaving care services in the following financial years?
a) 2013 - 2014
b) 2014 - 2015
c) 2015 - 2016
d) 2016 - 2017
e) 2017 - 2018

A.1 - A.7 Northumberland County Council confirms that it holds the information you have requested, please see the attached information in response.
 


Details:

Reference Number: 5548
Request Date: 05/02/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

 
Q.1   For each financial year 2012/2013, 2013/2014, 2014/2015, 2015/2016, 2016/2017, 2017/2018 and 2018-present, how many S.42 safeguarding reports/enquiries have the local authorities recorded under the Care Act 2014, involving the abuse and neglect of patients under 65 years old with learning disabilities and/or autism, detained under the Mental Health Act 1983 in an NHS or independent sector hospital with a specialism in assessment or medical treatment for persons with learning disabilities and/or autism? Please list the names of the care provider and the number of reports of safeguarding incidents for each.

Q.2   In connection to the above, please list the type of safeguarding enquiries/reports (as per below) for each private provider:
a. Neglect and acts of omission
b. Emotional/psychological abuse
c. Physical abuse
d. Sexual abuse
e. Medication
f. Discriminatory abuse
g. Other type of abuse as recorded by the local authority

Q.3   In connection to the above Q1 and Q2, please provide the person alleged to be responsible for the reported safeguarding report/enquiry:
a. paid employee
b. other service user
c. agency staff member
d. family member or visitor
e. outside health professional (eg doctor psychiatrist)
f. other

Q.4   In connection to Q1, please provide the number of investigations that concluded during each financial year 2012/2013, 2013/2014, 2014/2015, 2015/2016, 2016/2017, 2017/2018 and 2018-present and the number, which resulted in:
a. non-criminal investigations
b. criminal investigations
NB. For each of the questions, if some of the hospital settings provide services for both patients over 65 and under, please refer to the ones under 65.

A.1 - A.4     Based on the information we hold, there were four enquiries under Section 42 of the Care Act 2014, or equivalent enquiries under the national framework for safeguarding adults which was in place before April 2015, which fell within the scope of your query.  Details of these is in the attached spreadsheet.
Adult Social Care:   cost of care
Children & Families:   looked after children
Children & Families:   foster care and adoptions
Finance & Payments:   funding for care homes
Politics, Policies & Minutes:   Policies & Legislation
Children & Families:   Funding for care homes - TO BE ADDED
The department holding the information is that which has lead responsibility for dealing with kinship (also known as family and friends care) support and placements. 
Please note that the information gleaned will be analysed and inform the evidence gathering stage of the work of the Parliamentary Taskforce on Kinship Care.
Please provide the following information that your local authority holds: 

Q.1   Provide a link to your local authority’s kinship care policy (this may also be known as your family and friends care policy).

A.1    https://www.northumberland.gov.uk/Children/Looked-after/Fostering.aspx#familyfriendscare

Q.2   Does your local authority have a named designated lead 
manager responsible for kinship care (also known as family and friends care)? If so, what is their name and contact details, and what is the title of their substantive post?

A.2   Liz Spaven, Senior Manager - Family Placements

liz.spaven@northumberland.gov.uk

Q.3   Does your local authority have a written policy and/or procedure that sets out financial support for children in kinship care under the following arrangements, and if so, please provide a copy of the policy and/or procedure(s):
a) Children placed or living in family and friends care overall (encompassing all the different types of arrangements below)
b) Children placed with family and friends foster carers?
c) Children subject to a Special Guardianship Order?
d) Children subject to a Child Arrangement Order or Residence Order?
e) Children living in private fostering arrangements?
f) Children living in kinship care informal arrangements (where there is no legal order)?

A.3   See attached document

Link to private fostering info:  https://www.northumberland.gov.uk/privatefostering.aspx

Q.4    See the attached document

Q.5   Do you have a written policy about how kinship carers can access legal advice including, how this is funded?   If yes, please provide this.
If you do not have a written policy, what guidelines do you use in determining whether to pay for independent legal advice or representation for a kinship carer or potential kinship carer? E.g. an initial consultation for £x.

A.5   See attached document

Q.6    Between 1 April 2017 and 31 March 2018, what was the total local authority budget spent on all children placed or living in family and friends care overall?
Can this be broken down by total local authority spend on:
a) Children placed with family and friends foster carers?
b) Children subject to a Special Guardianship Order?
c) Children subject to a Child Arrangement Order or Residence Order?
d) Children living in informal arrangements (where there is no legal order)?

A.6    See answer to question 4
 
Q.7    Please state how many looked-after children were placed in friends and family foster placements as of 31st March 2018.

A.7     67

Q.8     Of the number of looked after children placed in friends and family foster placements as of 31st March 2018, how many were previously placed by the local authority in: 

Q.8a)   A foster placement (or placements) with unrelated carers? 

A.8a)    8

Q.8b)    A different family and friends foster placement? 

A.8b)    5

Q.8c)    A residential children’s home setting? 

A.8c)    0

Q.8d)   Any other provision for looked-after children?

A.8d)   0
 


Details:

Reference Number: 5549
Request Date: 05/02/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1   Provide a link to your local authority’s kinship care policy (this may also be known as your family and friends care policy).

A.1    https://www.northumberland.gov.uk/Children/Looked-after/Fostering.aspx#familyfriendscare

Q.2   Does your local authority have a named designated lead 
manager responsible for kinship care (also known as family and friends care)? If so, what is their name and contact details, and what is the title of their substantive post?

A.2   Liz Spaven, Senior Manager - Family Placements

liz.spaven@northumberland.gov.uk

Q.3   Does your local authority have a written policy and/or procedure that sets out financial support for children in kinship care under the following arrangements, and if so, please provide a copy of the policy and/or procedure(s):
a) Children placed or living in family and friends care overall (encompassing all the different types of arrangements below)
b) Children placed with family and friends foster carers?
c) Children subject to a Special Guardianship Order?
d) Children subject to a Child Arrangement Order or Residence Order?
e) Children living in private fostering arrangements?
f) Children living in kinship care informal arrangements (where there is no legal order)?

A.3   See attached document

Link to private fostering info:  https://www.northumberland.gov.uk/privatefostering.aspx

Q.4    See the attached document

Q.5   Do you have a written policy about how kinship carers can access legal advice including, how this is funded?   If yes, please provide this.
If you do not have a written policy, what guidelines do you use in determining whether to pay for independent legal advice or representation for a kinship carer or potential kinship carer? E.g. an initial consultation for £x.

A.5   See attached document

Q.6    Between 1 April 2017 and 31 March 2018, what was the total local authority budget spent on all children placed or living in family and friends care overall?
Can this be broken down by total local authority spend on:
a) Children placed with family and friends foster carers?
b) Children subject to a Special Guardianship Order?
c) Children subject to a Child Arrangement Order or Residence Order?
d) Children living in informal arrangements (where there is no legal order)?

A.6    See answer to question 4
 
Q.7    Please state how many looked-after children were placed in friends and family foster placements as of 31st March 2018.

A.7     67

Q.8     Of the number of looked after children placed in friends and family foster placements as of 31st March 2018, how many were previously placed by the local authority in: 

Q.8a)   A foster placement (or placements) with unrelated carers? 

A.8a)    8

Q.8b)    A different family and friends foster placement? 

A.8b)    5

Q.8c)    A residential children’s home setting? 

A.8c)    0

Q.8d)   Any other provision for looked-after children?

A.8d)   0
 


Details:

Reference Number: 5599
Request Date: 13/02/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1   How many secure care accommodation facilities do you operate or have access to in your area?

A.1   Secure accommodation is a National resource and therefore access to all 14 SCH is via the national bed bank. In our North East region there are two SCH. One is operated  by Northumberland County Council the other by Durham.

Q.2   How many places are available in these facilities for young people?  

A.2   In Kyloe House (Northumberland operated) there are 12 main placements and two step down placements.

Q.3   In the past 10 years (January 2009 - January 2019) how many children and young people have you placed in secure care placements in Scotland, per year? What ages have these children been? 

A.3   Less than 5

Q.4   For all of these placements, how much has been paid to the provider of the Scottish secure care accommodation per placement?  

A.4   N/A

Q.5   Which providers have you used in Scotland to provide secure care accommodation?

Please note - If the time frame of the past 10 years is going to be too large to fit within the FOI guidelines,  please reduce this to five years (January 2014 - 2019).  

A.5   N/A



Details:

Reference Number: 5700
Request Date: 04/03/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1      Please could you provide a copy of the local authority’s most recent sufficiency statement for looked after children services?

A.1      See attached

Q.2      Please could you let me know when the local authority plans to publish the next update to its sufficiency statement for looked after children services.

A.2      April/May 2019 

Q.3      Please could you provide information on the following:
-  In 2018, of all of the foster carer de-registrations which were initiated by the carer, how many were offered exit interviews?

A.3     All foster carers have the option of an exit interview when they resign.  This process has been developed further since November 2018 to ensure this offer is more robust and to encourage take up of the offer.  

-  In 2018, of all of the foster carer de-registrations which were initiated by the carer, please provide a summary of the reasons for deregistering

A.3      18 de-registered
3 for health 
9 for age/retired 
6 other including - new job, relationship breakdown, adoption

-  What current estimate do you have of children who will need to be fostered as part of a sibling group both now and in future years?

A.3   Placement demand changes on a day to day basis and predicting future years is not answerable without undertaking detailed analysis of children accessing services at all levels. 

-  How many foster carers are currently able to accommodate sibling groups?

A.3   49
 


Details:

Reference Number: 5730
Request Date: 07/03/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1   Please could you provide information on how much money is spent each year with agencies on the educational tuition of Looked After Children, itemizing which agencies are used, and how much is spent with each?

A.1   Tuition figures for Looked after Children for last academic year 2017/18 are as follows:

Teaching Personnel    £21,426.51
Supply Desk               £ 3,105.00
PK Education             £84,172.00

Making a total Spend of £108,703.51
 


Details:

Reference Number: 5747
Request Date: 11/03/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1 I'd like to make a Freedom of Information Request regarding the number of siblings who have been separated when in the care of your local authority over the last three years. How many siblings in the care system of your local authority have been separated since 1st January 2016 to present?  Please provide a breakdown of the numbers by year.

A.1   In 2015/16, 1 sibling group was separated where this wasn't the plan
         In 2016/17, no sibling groups were separated where this wasn't the plan
         In 2017/18, 2 sibling groups were separated where this wasn't the plan
 


Details:

Reference Number: 5753
Request Date: 11/03/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1   The number of registered Childrens Homes operated by the Local Authority as at 1st January 2019 and as at 1st January 2018;

A.1   5

Q.2   The number of registered Childrens Homes operated by an Independent (private or voluntary) provider within your Local Authority as at 1st January 2019 and as at 1st January 2018;

LAC Statistics

A.2   8

Q.3   The number of current looked after children (LAC);

A.3   366

Q.4   The number of LAC currently placed within Local Authority Childrens homes;

A.4   11

Q.5   The number of LAC currently placed within Independent Childrens homes;

 Framework & Non-Framework Providers & Fees
 
A.5   26

Q.6   In relation to any Frameworks you currently operate with Independent Childrens Home Providers, please provide the following information (including Provider name) about the number of LAC placed with Independent Childrens Homes, the average weekly fee paid for these placements, per type specified and whether the fees include any discounts agreed with said Provider. Please also advise the totals for all placements in each type specified i.e. total average weekly fee & total no of CYP in placement.  

A.6   Please see attached spreadsheet

Q.7   As per question 6, please provide the same information; however, this time in relation to Non-Framework Providers i.e. where the Local Authority (LA) has placed with Independent Childrens Home Providers using a Spot Purchase mechanism because the Provider is not on a Framework with the LA. Please also advise the totals for all placements in each type specified i.e. total average weekly fee & total no of CYP in placement.

A.7   Please see attached spreadsheet
 


Details:

Reference Number: 5770
Request Date: 14/03/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1      How many children went missing from children’s residential care ran by the local authority?

A.1      2015 - less than 5
2016 - less than 5
2017 - 9
2018 - 8
2019 - less than 5

Q.2      What is the youngest age of a child who went missing from residential care ran by the local authority, how long were they missing, what was the sex of the child?

A.2      2015 - 15 - female - 1 day
2016 - 13 - female - 1 day
2017 - 12 - male - 1 day
2018 - 10 - male - half an hour
2019 - 13 - male - 1 day

Q.3      What is the longest amount of time a child was missing from residential care ran by the local authority?
 
A.3       2015 - 1 day
2016 - 1 day
2017 - 1 day
2018 - 1 day
2019 - 2 days

 


Details:

Reference Number: 5774
Request Date: 15/03/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1   How do you monitor attendance and assessment data collection for look after children in your care for both in and out of area?

A.1   Every LAC has an allocated education support worker who visits them in school.  Attainment and attendance are monitored by ESW's and Northumberland Virtual School for LAC Data Officer

Q.2   How many students are monitored?

A.2   At this time, 255

Q.3   Who provides this service for you?

A.3   Northumberland Virtual School Data Officer

Q.4   What is the contract value per annum?

A.4   N/A

Q.5   When is the contract due for renewal?

A.5   N/A
 


Details:

Reference Number: 5867
Request Date: 02/04/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

I am writing to make a request under the Freedom of Information Act for details of looked after children placed in residential children’s homes.

Q.1    The total number of looked after children the council currently (as of, or around, today’s date) has Corporate Parenting responsibility for, who are currently placed in residential children’s homes (excluding fostering placements, secure children’s homes, residential special schools registered as children’s homes, children’s homes that provide respite care or short breaks only, and unregulated settings). Please note this definition of children’s homes is the same used by the Department for Education in collating children’s homes data in the Children’s Homes Data Pack.

Q.2     A breakdown of this total showing the number of placements within the local authority, and the number outside the local authority.

A.1 & A.2   Northumberland County Council confirms that it holds the information you have requested, please see the attached information in response
 


Details:

Reference Number: 5901
Request Date: 08/04/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Looked after children: numbers and placements

Q.1    How many children were looked after by your local authority in the following periods of time
a) Between 1 April 2018 and 31 March 2019
b) between 1 April 2017 and 31 March 2018
c) between 1 April 2016 and 31 March 2017
d) between 1 April 2015 and 31 March 2016

Q.2    How many children were looked after by your local authority in the following periods of time
e) At 31 March 2019
f) at 31 March 2018
g) at 31 March 2017
h) at 31 March 2016

Q.3    How many looked after children at 31 March of each year specified below were placed in the following settings outside your local authority boundaries?

Q.4    How many looked after children at 31 March of each year specified below were placed in the following settings inside your local authority boundaries?

Q.5    In the periods of time specified in the table below how many looked after children, who your local authority was responsible for, were placed outside of your local authority boundaries and how many placements did this relate to?

Q.6    In the periods of time specified in the table below how many children were placed in out of area placements more than 20 miles of their home address and how many placements this relates to?

Q.7    Of the children placed outside your local authority boundaries and in the periods of time specified in the table below how many looked after children were placed in distant placements and how many placements this relates to?

Looked after children your local authority is responsible for going missing from our of area placements

Q.8    Of the children placed outside your local authority boundaries and in the periods of time specified in the table below how many children went missing and how many missing incidents it relates to?

Q.9    Who is currently commissioned to provide RHIs to looked after children who are placed out of area?

Q.10   For the looked after children your local authority is responsible for placed outside of your local authority and for the periods of time specified in the table below how many children went missing from the following placements:

Q.11   For the looked after children your local authority is responsible for placed outside of your local authority and for the periods of time specified in the table below how missing incidents were reported from the following placements:

Looked after children from other local authorities placed in your local area

Q.12   In the periods of time specified in the table below how many looked after children were placed in your local authority by other local authorities and how many placements this relates to?

Q.13   Out of children placed in your local authority by other local authorities and in the period of time specified in the table below how many children were in distant placements?

Q.14   Out of children placed in your local authority by other local authorities and in the period of time specified in the table below how many children went missing and how many missing incidents it relates to?

A.1 - A.14    Northumberland County Council confirms that it holds the information you have requested, please see the attached information in response

Please note we do not hold information for looked after children from other local authorities placed within our local area so we are unable to provide this data.
 


Details:

Reference Number: 5902
Request Date: 08/04/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Request for a copy of the documents containing the following information:
 
Q.1      Details of the lowest, highest and average weekly fee rates agreed with external suppliers of Independent Foster Care Services for the current year (2019/2020).
 
Example response as follows –
Lowest weekly fee rate = £461.28
Highest weekly fee rate = £1150.71
Average weekly fee rate = £746.51
 
Q.2      Details of the lowest, highest and average weekly fee rates paid to local authority carers.
 
(Please note that for questions 1 and 2, we do not require details of all rates paid to individual suppliers, simply minimum, maximum and average rates payable.)
 
Example response as follows –
Lowest weekly fee rate = £256.25
Highest weekly fee rate = £642.06
Average weekly fee rate = £416
  
Q.3     Details of the rates of each tier for independent fostering agencies (if there is a framework agreement in place), or confirmation that tier rates have not changed from the previous year.
 
Example response as follows -
Tier rates have not changed from the previous year
Or
Tier 1 (0-4) = £259.00
Tier 1 (5-10) = £282.00
Tier 1 (11+) = £327.00
Tier 1 (16+) = £372.00
 
Tier 2 (0-4) = £284.00
Tier 2 (5-10) = £307.00
Tier 2 (11+) = £352.00
Tier 2 (16+) = £397.00
 
Tier 3 (0-4) = £310.00
Tier 3 (5-10) = £333.00
Tier 3 (11+) = £378.00
Tier 3 (16+) = £423.004
 
Q.4     The number of looked after children in foster care as at 31 March 2019 and of those children, the percentage looked after by independent foster agencies.
 
Example response as follows –
There were 51 looked after children in foster care as of 31 March 2019 and of those children, 30% were looked after by independent foster agencies. 
 
A.1 - A.4   Northumberland County Council confirms that it holds the information you have requested, please see the attached information in response.
 


Attachments:

Details:

Reference Number: 5929
Request Date: 15/04/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1   In the 2018 calendar year how many children were taken into care where there was a recorded concern that the parents/carers were at risk of physical violence from the child? Please state the ages and sexes of any children involved.

A.1   Less than 5
 


Details:

Reference Number: 5935
Request Date: 15/04/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1      How many missing incidents were reported for looked after children who had been placed outside of your local authority area between 1 April 2017 and 31 March 2018?
 
A.1      63

Q.2      For how many of those incidents was a return interview offered during the same time period?
 
A.2      54

Q.3      For how many of those incidents was a return interview completed during the same time period?
 
A.3      36
 


Details:

Reference Number: 5985
Request Date: 26/04/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1   Are you already a member of a Regional Adoption Agency (RAA)?  Yes/No
 
A.1    Yes

Q.2   If yes to Question 1, which authority or agency is delivering the RAA?  (Is it led by a specific Local Authority or a Private or Voluntary Agency?)  Please give us the name of the actual LA or Agency.
 
If no to Question 1, what is your plan for securing membership of a RAA within the government specified timescales (due date and authorities you are seeking to join with).  You do not need to answer any further questions after this.
 
A.2    North Tyneside are the host authority 

Q.3   Who is the designated lead officer responsible for the Regional Adoption Agency?  Name, Role and Email address please.
 
A.3    Bryan Glover is the Service Manager at ANE

Q.4   Which LA or Agency is responsible for delivering the IT solution that supports the work of the RAA?
 
A.4    North Tyneside

Q.5   Has the RAA already procured an IT system to support its work?  If yes, who is the supplier of that system? If no, you do not need to answer any further questions.
 
A.5    North Tyneside would need to respond to this. 

Q.6   Does this system provide other functionality apart from the RAA? 
 
For example, is it part of a wider social care system or is it a specific standalone solution for the activities of a RAA?  If it is part of wider system, please tell us which system this is (supplier name) and the authority whose social care system this is.
 
A.6    North Tyneside would need to respond to this.   

Q.7   If this is a dedicated RAA system only, what is the value of the contract and the contract period?  Please show the purchasing costs / implementation costs and support and maintenance costs separately.

A.7    North Tyneside would need to respond to this.
 


Details:

Reference Number: 5986
Request Date: 26/04/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1   How do you currently accommodate care leavers/young people(16-24 years old) within your borough? 
 
A.1   Depending upon the individual needs of young people then children may be placed in a children's home (if under 18) or supported accommodation which can include flexible levels of floating support.

Q.2   Can you explain your commissioning process for private residential care providers/private supported living providers? Do you spot purchase, have framework contacts/agreement or block contracts?
 
A.2  Children's home provision is commissioned on a spot purchase basis dependant upon individual need.  A framework for the provision of Supported Accommodation has been established.

Q.3   Do organisations need to go through the tendering process to accommodate care leavers/young people (16-24 years old) on a spot purchase basis? If information regarding the website to access will be valuable. 
 
A.3  The Council would look to the Framework to meet need in the first instance. In the event that need cannot be met via an established mechanism then the Council may on occasion spot purchase from "off framework" providers. All tendering opportunities are published via the NEPO portal. This can be accessed via https://procontract.due-north.com/Register 

Q.4   Do you operate an approved providers list of private residential care providers/private supported living providers? If so how do I register? 
 
A.4  All tendering opportunities are published via the NEPO portal. This can be accessed via https://procontract.due-north.com/Register

Q.5   How many care leavers/young people (16&17 years olds) are currently in private residential care/private supported accommodation? Do you require more providers? 
 
A.5  Less than 5

Q.6   How many care leavers/young people (18 years old and above) are currently in private residential care/private supported accommodation? Do you require more providers?
 
A.6  Eleven.   

The Council would look to its established framework of providers in the first instance in order to be able to meet need. Only in those situations where the framework has not been able to meet need would the Council spot purchase from other providers.

Q.7   How many care leavers or eligible young people (16&17 years olds) are living in private residential care/private supported accommodation with support of 10 hours or more? 
 
A.7  Nil 

Q.8   How many care leavers or eligible young people (18 years old and above) are living in private residential care/private supported accommodation with support of 10 hours or more? 
 
A.8  Less than 5

Q.9   What is the average weekly cost of placing a child (16&17 years olds) in a private residential care/private supported accommodation? 
 
A.9  Residential special placements   £3,360
Supported accommodation                 £388
*Average costs weighted on length of stay

Q.10  What is the average weekly cost of placing an adult (18-24 years old) in a private residential care/private supported accommodation? 
 
A.10  Residential special placements - these costs fall under Adult Services on reaching 18.
Supported accommodation £216
*Average costs weighted on length of stay

Q.11  How can a private residential care/private supported accommodation approach the council when wishing to introduce their service? 
 
A.11  All tendering opportunities are published via the NEPO portal.

Q.12  Who should be approached within the council to discuss commissioning, service provision, rates and referrals?
 
A.12  Lynn Bryden - Senior Manager Commissioning
 


Details:

Reference Number: 6013
Request Date: 03/05/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

I would like to request the following information regarding the number of Looked After Children with autism (ASD) and Social, Emotional and Mental Health (SEMH) in children’s homes. For questions 2 through 5, please supply the following information as a snapshot at the end of the year for financial years 2014/15 to 2018/19.

Q.1     Please could you supply the name, job title, email address and telephone number of the commissioner with responsibility for Looked After Children and/or placements in children’s care homes.

Q.2     How many Looked After Children in the local authority have; (a) an ASD (primary type of need) and (b) SEMH (primary type of need)?

Q.3     Of the Looked After Children with ASD (primary type of need) and SEMH (primary type of need) (Q2), how many are funded by the local authority in children's homes (excluding secure units and hostels)?

Q.4    Of the Looked After Children with ASD (primary type of need) and SEMH (primary type of need) funded by the local authority in children's homes (Q3), how many are in; (a) in-house/local authority children's homes and (b) independent children's homes?

Q.5    Of the Looked After Children with ASD (primary type of need) and SEMH (primary type of need) in children's homes (all, in-house/local authority and independent) (Q3 & 4), how many are in out of area placements?

Q.6    What is the local authority’s total expenditure on children's home placements (all, in-house/local authority and independent) for Looked After Children with ASD (primary type of need) and SEMH (primary type of need) for each of the financial years 2014/15 to 2018/19?

A.1 - Q.6   Northumberland County Council confirms that it holds the information you have requested, please see the attached information in response.
 


Details:

Reference Number: 6103
Request Date: 21/05/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1   Please give the name of your Local Authority?

A.1   Northumberland County Council

Q.2   How many sets of twins were taken into care between the years 2010 – 2018?

A.2   11

Q.3   How many sets of twins were separated when taken into care, whether into foster care or a care home, at any point through their care journey between the years 2010 – 2018?

(NB. please note we are asking how many sets of twins and not how many times. We are aware they could have been separated for a brief period and then reunited but please answer if separated at any point)

A.3    less than 5

Q.4   How many sets of twins were kept in a 'long term placement' or 'long term foster care' separately from one and other through their care journey between the years 2010 – 2018?

(NB. by Long-term care we mean that the care plan for the child is to remain in a specific fostering placement or care home, until reaching adulthood and leaving care, and/ or for the foreseeable future)

A.4    less than 5

Q.5   How many sets of twins have since been adopted into separate families,  after being taken into care between the years 2010 – 2018?

A.5    0
 


Details:

Reference Number: 6109
Request Date: 23/05/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1      What specific provision is available in your area for children and young people diagnosed with conduct disorder and those with conduct difficulties? Please list individual services and tiers they fall under (e.g. Tier 2 or targeted; Tier 3 or community specialist or Tier 4 or inpatient).

Q.2      What mental health provision is available in your area for children and young people in contact with social services, including looked after children, children in need or children under child protection orders? Please list individual services and corresponding tiers as above.

Q.3      Is there specific provision in your area to support young people transitioning from child and adolescent mental health services to adult mental health services? Yes or no answer please. Please specify if CAMHS in your area covers individuals aged 18 and over and please specify the age range covered.

Q.4      Do you engage with any of the following to understand the mental health needs of children and young people in your area?

a) Healthwatch

b) Children and young people and their families

c) Community and/or faith groups

d) Charities or other NGOs (if yes, please specify which ones)

A.1 - A.4    I am writing to inform you that we have searched our records and the information you requested is not held by Northumberland County Council.
 


Details:

Reference Number: 6140
Request Date: 28/05/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1   Please give the number of looked after children under 16 in the care of your authority who were in supported/semi-supported accommodation placements on 31 March 2019.  
 
A.1    0

Q.2   Please could you tell us how many children aged 16 and 17 who were in the care of local authorities other than your own (ie "out of area placements") and who are living in supported/semi supported accommodation located within your authority's boundaries on 31 March 2019.
 
A.2    We do not hold information on other local authorities

Q.3   Please give the number of how many of the looked after children identified in the answer to Q.2 come from which other local authority area – giving a number of children per other local authority area that they are from.
 
A.3    We do not hold information on other local authorities

Q.4   Please give the number of 16 and 17 year olds in the care of your local authority who were in supported/semi-supported accommodation placements outside your local authority's boundaries on 31 March 2019.
 
A.4   less than 5

Q.5   Please give the number of how many of the looked after children aged 16 and 17 years old identified in the answer to Q4 are placed in which other local authority area – giving a number of children per other local authority area that they are placed in.
 
A.5   Newcastle Upon Tyne - less than 5
 


Details:

Reference Number: 6494
Request Date: 06/08/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1    The number of children placed in unregistered care provision in each of the last four financial years (2015/16, 2016/17, 2017/18 and 2018/19)?

Q.2    The number of unregistered care settings discovered within the authority in each of the last four financial years (2015/16, 2016/17, 2017/18 and 2018/19)?

Q.3    The number of children placed inside unregistered care provision by the authority who allege to have been sexually abused or exploited while inside unregistered care provision in each of the last four financial years (2015/16, 2016/17, 2017/18 and 2018/19)?

Q.4    The number of children placed inside unregistered care provision by the authority who allege to have been physically assaulted while inside unregistered care provision in each of the last four financial years (2015/16, 2016/17, 2017/18 and 2018/19)?

A.1 - A.4     Northumberland County Council confirms that it holds the information you have requested, please see the attached information in response

For clarification, unregistered care provision refers to when a child who is being provided with some form of ‘care’ is living somewhere that is not registered with Ofsted. It is not equivalent to unregulated care settings for those aged 16+. If there is any doubt about the distinction please refer to the following Ofsted blog:
https://socialcareinspection.blog.gov.uk/2019/07/08/unregistered-and-unregulated-provision-whats-the-difference/

Unregistered and unregulated provision - what's the difference? - Ofsted: developments in children’s social care - socialcareinspection.blog.gov.uk
Today’s report from the Howard League for Penal Reform raises some important issues about the care system and children’s homes. One area of concern is provision for children that is not regulated by Ofsted, and the safety of the children who use it. I’m often asked about unregistered and unregulated provision.
socialcareinspection.blog.gov.uk

Please prioritise this request over a request currently in process  concerning respite care, if necessary.

If you are able to supply some of this information more  quickly than other items, please supply each item when you can rather than delay everything until it is all available.
 


Details:

Reference Number: 6587
Request Date: 28/08/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1    The total number of children registered as looked after by your local authority who have registered for the EU Settlement Scheme

A.1    This information is not recorded.

Q.2    The total number of children registered as ‘looked after’ by your local authority

A.2     392

Q.3    The total number whose applications for the EU Settlement Scheme have been approved. 

A.3     This information is not recorded.
 


Details:

Reference Number: 6609
Request Date: 03/09/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

I would be grateful if you could supply the following information from your local authority:

Housing policy for care leavers
Strategy for Children in Care
Mental Health Strategy for Children in Care

Under the terms of the Open Government License, the documents above will be placed on the website of Isabel’s Voice (free to the public), unless you remove your permission to do so.

The information requested is intended for future publication at the end of October as they are being updated. 

Public Interest Test Considerations

Section 22(1) is a qualified exemption which means that the information falling within the exemption still has to be released unless the public interest in disclosure is outweighed by the public interest in maintaining the exemption.

Northumberland County Council recognises that there is a general public interest in information held by public authorities being made available and that it should take place at the earliest appropriate time. This helps towards ensuring the public accountability and transparency of public authorities and promotes public engagement in any debate about the delivery of public services and the use of public funds.

However, the public interest can sometimes be best served by the planned publication of information at an appropriate time rather than in response to an individual request for that information ahead of that time.

On balance, and in all the circumstances of this particular case, we have concluded that the public interest is best served by the planned future publication of the information you have requested and by maintaining the exemption at section 22(1) at this time.

Notice of Refusal

Please treat this letter as a Notice of Refusal as regards the information covered by the Section 22(1) Exemption
 


Details:

Reference Number: 6630
Request Date: 06/09/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1    The total number of individuals who were placed by the local authority in semi-independent accommodation for each of the last four financial years (including 2018/19)

A.1     
2016 - data not recorded
2017 - 9
2018 - 37
2019 - 45

Q.2    The total number of individuals who were placed by the local authority in semi-independent accommodation outside of the borough or local authority, for each of the last four financial years (including 2018/19)

A.2    
 2016 - data not recorded
2017 - 0
2018 - 5
2019 - 9

Q.3   For each of the last four financial years (including 2018/19), how many missing episodes occurred involving individuals placed by the local authority in semi-independent accommodation:

A.3a) in total

A.3a)   2015/16 - data not recorded
2016/17 - 21
2017/18 - 26
2018/19 - 24

Q.3b) where the individual was placed outside the borough or local authority

A.3b)    2015/16 - data not recorded
2016/17 - less than 5
2017/18 - 5
2018/19 - 5

Q.3c) where the children were recognised as being at risk from CSE (child sexual exploitation) 

A.3c)    2015/16 - data not recorded
2016/17 - 0
2017/18 - 0
2018/19 - less than 5

Q.4    Over the last financial year (2018/2019), on how many occasions were individuals who had been placed by the local authority in semi-independent accommodation and went missing during their placement, found to have been sexually assaulted or exploited while they were missing.

A.4    2015/16 -data not recorded
2016/17 - N/A
2017/18 - N/A
2018/19 - N/A
 


Details:

Reference Number: 6948
Request Date: 07/11/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1      Which organisation (if any) does the local authority commission to deliver Return Home Interviews for children who have been missing?

A.1     This service has not been externally commissioned since July 2019. RHI are undertaken by trained workers within our Adolescent Service

Q.2      How many Return Home Interviews were offered by your local authority (or commissioned service) from 1st April 2018 to 31st March 2019?

A.2     During the period requested Barnados undertook the interviews and 567 Return Home Interviews were offered.

Q.3      How many Return Home Interviews were delivered by your local authority (or commissioned service) from 1st April 2018 to 31st March 2019? (i.e. the child was actually interviewed)

A.3     During the period requested, Return Home Interviews were offered by Barnardos who delivered 285 interviews. 

Q.4      How many times was child criminal exploitation (CCE), such as county lines, raised as an issue in these Return Home Interviews?

A.4     0

Q.5      Are Return Home Interviews only offered to Looked After Children, or are there other groups that are eligible for Return Home Interviews? If so, please list eligible groups.

A.5     Return Home Interviews are offered to every child that goes missing in Northumberland, regardless of status. 
This is extended to children who have been placed in our area by another local authority who would not be reasonably able to travel to complete the interview. Such an arrangement is always negotiated directly with that authority.
 


Details:

Reference Number: 7027
Request Date: 22/11/2019 Archived

Question and Response:

Q.1     I wish to obtain copies of all available inspection reports on children’s residential care services during the period 1993 to 2002, which i believe are in the public domain.

Exemptions

The Freedom of Information Act sets out various exemptions to the right of access.

In the present case the County Council takes the view that the information relating to your request is exempt under the following provisions;

Section 21 of the Act states that a public Authority does not need to provide information under section 1 of the Act if that information is reasonably accessible to the applicant by other means.

The information is available via this link. 

Notice of Refusal

Please treat this letter as a Notice of Refusal as regards the information covered by the Section 21 Exemption.