Excellent service for children

INSPECTORS have rated a council service as ‘performing excellently’ for the second year running – the only authority in the region to do so.

North Tyneside Council is one of only 28 authorities in the country to achieve the top ranking for its children’s services, and one of only two regionally.

Strengths highlighted in North Tyneside’s 2011 assessment include good services for the under fives, good or outstanding schools, improved provision for post 16 learning and good and outstanding adoption and fostering services.

Coun David Lilly, cabinet member for children, young people and learning, said: “We are delighted to have maintained our ‘performing excellently’ rating from 2010.

“We believe that all of our children and young people should receive high quality support, care and opportunities and be encouraged to have high aspirations, no matter what their background or circumstances.

“This latest endorsement of the quality of our children’s services is a credit to the children’s workforce in North Tyneside.

“We will continue our work to ensure the future success, safety and wellbeing of our children and young people.”

Inspectors reached the ‘performing excellently’ judgement by taking into account levels of performance across a wide range of areas within children’s services.

This included education provision and levels of achievement, child protection, adoption and fostering and early years support.

The latest report for North Tyneside highlights a number of strengths, including:

• Most services for the under fives, in early years or childcare settings, are either good or outstanding;

• A large majority of the borough’s primary schools are good or better;

• Secondary schools in North Tyneside continue to be mostly good or outstanding;

• Provisional GCSE results for 2011 show significant improvement;

• The proportion of 16-year-olds in receipt of free school meals who achieve at least five good GCSEs has improved;

• Persistent absence from school is low;

• Specialist education provision is consistently good or better;

• Adoption services continue to be good;

• Fostering services continue to be outstanding.