How Ofsted inspects children’s social care
Guidance on how Ofsted inspects children’s social care
Information for local authority services, adoption and fostering agencies, residential centres and other children’s social care services.
Published by: Ofsted
Published on 3 December 2014, Last updated on 31 March 201
Ofsted registers and inspects some types of social care services; other types are inspected but do not have to register with Ofsted.
The two groups are listed below. The links go to the relevant inspection guidance including the inspection framework/handbook.
Social care services that Ofsted registers and inspects:
- Adoption support agencies.
- Children’s homes.
- Secure children’s homes.
- Independent fostering agencies.
- Residential family centres.
- Residential holiday schemes for disabled children.
- Voluntary adoption agencies.
Social care services that Ofsted inspects
- Boarding schools and residential special schools.
- Cafcass, the Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service.
- Further education colleges.
- Local authority children’s service.
- Secure training centres.
During the inspection
Inspectors will carry out tasks depending on the service. Tasks usually include:
- discussions with children and young people.
- observing staff.
- talking to staff and, where possible, parents, guardians, advocates and other professionals.
- checking premises and equipment to make sure they are safe.
- reading files.
- checking records, procedures and other documents.
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