The Child Safeguarding Practice Review Panel has published its Phase 2 report on safeguarding children with disabilities and complex health needs in residential settings. This builds on Phase 1 which looked at the experiences of children and young adults who suffered significant neglect, abuse and harm when placed in three residential special schools in Doncaster operated by the Hesley Group.

The Phase 2 report sets out systemic issues arising from the Phase 1 report, four strategic priority areas for improvement and recommendations for changes to policy and practice to improve the safety, support and outcomes for children with disabilities and complex health needs.

As the LGA outlined in their response, these findings are an urgent call to action for the entire sector, with clear opportunities to act on the Panel’s recommendations through planned reforms to children’s social care and SEND if these are adequately funded. The LGA also emphasised the vital role of partners in supporting children with SEND and the need for councils to have powers to hold local partners to account for this.

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