Decision details

Inspection of Herefordshire Children's Services

Decision Maker: Cabinet

Decision status: Recommendations Approved

Is Key decision?: No

Is subject to call in?: Yes


To present the recently published report detailing the findings of the inspection by Ofsted inspectors of Herefordshire Council children’s services in July 2022 and to outline both the action taken immediately and since the inspection to address some of the concerns raised, and the implications of the Statutory Direction issued by the Secretary of State.



a)    Cabinet receive and note the Ofsted inspection report;

b)    Cabinet note any comments and recommendations from the extraordinary council meeting to be held on 30 September 2022, these to be considered prior to the submission of the action plan to Ofsted by 20 December 2022;

c)    Cabinet to receive updated reports until further notice of actions taken and improvements against the inspection report; and

d)    The action plan once finalised be approved by cabinet for submission to Ofsted by 20 December 2022.


Alternative options considered:

1.             There are no alternative options.  The Department for Education have issued a statutory direction and Herefordshire Council is directed as follows:

a)    To comply with any instructions of the Secretary of State or the Children’s Services Commissioner in relation to the improvement of the Council’s exercise of its children’s social care functions and provide such assistance as either the Secretary of State of the Children’s Services Commissioner may require;

b)    To co-operate with the Children’s Services Commissioner, including on request allowing the Commissioner at all reasonable times access:

                        i.         to any premises of the Council;

                       ii.         to any document of, or relating to, the Council; and

                      iii.         to any employee or member of the Council,

which appears to her to be necessary for achieving the purposes of, and carrying out the responsibilities set out in, the Terms of Reference.

c)    To provide the Children’s Services Commissioner with such amenities, services and administrative support as she may reasonably require from time to time for the carrying out of her responsibilities in accordance with the Terms of Reference, including:

                        i.         providing officers’ time or support;

                       ii.         providing office space, meeting rooms or computer facilities;

d)    To co-operate with a Commissioner-led review as to the most effective way of securing and sustaining improvement in Herefordshire, including whether to remove the control of children’s social care from the Council, and/or put in place an alternative delivery model.


Wards Affected: (All Wards);

Contact: Darryl Freeman, Corporate Director, Children and Young People Email:

Publication date: 29/09/2022

Date of decision: 29/09/2022

Effective from: 06/10/2022

Accompanying Documents:

  • Inspection of Herefordshire Children's Services