and Young Peopleâ€™s Plan
Impact Report 2018
Foreword 3 Introduction 4 An Overview of 2017-18 5 An Overarching Assessment of the Children & Young Peopleâ€™s Plan
Thematic Breakdown of the Year 9 Safe 9 Happy & Healthy 12 Achieve 15 Equality 20 Future Focus 22
Councillor Nuala Fennelly Cabinet Member for Children, Young People and Schools
We are a year into the delivery of our Children and Young People’s Plan, it has been a dynamic year with work on-going across the partnership as we innovate and improve services in line with our shared priorities. When launching the Plan we committed to evaluating its impact on an annual basis to ensure progress was being made in realising our shared ambition of becoming the most child friendly borough in the country. In creating this report the views of children and young people were central in examining the impact our improving service delivery is having on the lives of families across Doncaster. In addition a range of partners were consulted and our performance data analysed.
There is a great deal to be proud of in this first year. Services across the partnership have improved the lives of children and young people in all four themes of the Plan. To highlight just some, we have seen the lives of some of most vulnerable young people improved through the work of Doncaster Children’s Services Trust, St Leger Homes and Doncaster Council and the innovative accommodation project for care leavers. In November 2017, Doncaster Children’s Services Trust was rated “good” by Ofsted having demonstrated considerable improvements since the last inspection. Significant improvements have been made across our primary schools in terms of Key Stage Two results for our children, where we have seen outcomes for Doncaster children improve well above the national average.
In the coming twelve months the Partnership will continue to work together on delivering the Children and Young People’s Plan, ensuring its priorities are at the heart of our decision making; and that children and young people hold us to account to ensure we deliver our ambition to make Doncaster the most child friendly borough.
Damian Allen Director of People (DCS/DASS)
In addition over the past year, through the establishment of the Participation and Engagement Strategy significant progress has been made across the partnership in developing innovative and creative methods to engage and involve children and young people in our services. This will continue to strengthen as we launch our Participation Standards, develop a Youth Strategy and recruit a range of Young Advisors. 3
Introduction In May 2017, we published our Children & Young People’s Plan (CYPP 2017-2020). It is a partnership plan that sets out our ambition for children & young people and identifies where the partnership needs to focus their energies in order to improve their lives and life chances. The Plan is written for all our children and young people and the partnership provide numerous universal, additional, and specialist services for children & young people of all ages, from pre-natal support services through to support for care leavers and those with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND) up to the age of 25. The plan has priorities shaped around 4 key themes: • keeping our children and young people safe • ensuring they are healthy & happy • helping them achieve great things in education • putting equality at the heart of our work and their experiences THEMES Safe
KEY PRIORITIES Children have access to the right services at the earliest opportunity
Domestic abuse practice is transformed across Doncaster
No child suffers significant harm as a result of neglect
Healthy & Happy Children and young people are healthy, have a sense of wellbeing and are resilient
Children have the best start in life
Children and young people’s development is underpinned through a healthy lifestyle
Ensure all children are school ready
All children attend a good or better setting and aspirations are raised to ensure they reach their full potential
Young people are equipped to access education, employment or training in a way that supports future social mobility
Diminish the difference between disadvantaged Fewer children live in poverty and non-disadvantaged children and young people
Keeping teenagers and young people safe
The plan is our first step in becoming the most child friendly borough in the country. This will involve listening to children & young people more, making sure they shape the services that affect them. We committed to reviewing the plan every year so we could be sure we were achieving our goals. This is our first annual impact report; which shows our work related to each of the themes and priorities and assesses our impact. The views from children and young people were the foundation of our assessment; this was accompanied by the feedback from across the partnership and an analysis of our performance data. This information is set out against the themes and includes a summary of our focus in the second year of the Children & Young People’s Plan. 4
An Overview of 2017-18 Detailed below are summaries of just some of the influential additions to the strategic landscape from the past year. Each document is directing our work in order to improve the experiences and outcomes of our children & young people. Doncaster Growing Together In September last year, the Council published Doncaster Growing Together, our Borough Strategy. This document sets out how we, along with our partners, will ensure that residents thrive in the future. The Learning, Living, Working, & Caring themes in the strategy are shaping our transformation agenda for Team Doncaster ensuring that Doncaster is a thriving place to learn, work, live and care. Social Mobility Opportunity Area Our designation as a Social Mobility Opportunity Area in 2017 should have a positive impact on a number of our goals, helping us to accelerate delivery against some of our priorities. This Department for Education (DfE) initiative comes with funding and provides further momentum to our work. The goal is to improve educational attainment and narrow the achievement gap between disadvantaged and non-disadvantaged pupils in Doncaster. The Place Plan The Place Plan is a demonstration of how Doncaster plans to integrate its health and social care services and deliver an effective, community based system. The vision is for care and support to be tailored to community strengths to help Doncaster residents maximise their independence, health, and wellbeing. Once realised residents will have access to excellent community and hospital based services when needed. The work is focusing on two key areas; the first 1001 days as delivered through the Starting Well Strategy, and Vulnerable Adolescents. Starting Well Strategy The Starting Well Strategy sets out how we plan to provide accessible, flexible and high quality effective early learning and childcare for all children. It incorporates a lot of the work from the 1001 days strand of the Place Plan. The strategy sets out how we hope to deliver a system that facilitates the development of our children up to the age of 2 that focuses on holistic support beyond purely health or educational services. Vulnerable Adolescents The ambition here is to better address the needs of those on the edge of care and ensure that there is enough capacity within local services to minimise the amount of young people that need to go out of area. Part of this involves integrating and rationalising existing services and the other part focuses on providing young people with the knowledge they need to navigate the system themselves. The Behaviour Transformation Programme The Behaviour Transformation Programme implemented over the next 3 years aims to tackle issues faced by disadvantaged young people within the education sector and is specifically concerned with: • Improving the capacity of mainstream schools to meet student needs • Ensuring that our provision outside of mainstream is appropriate and delivers outcomes and improved life chances • Improving engagement of more vulnerable families • Ensuring that there is consistent assessment and decision making within the system Work is being undertaken to reduce the pressure on Alternative Provision in Doncaster by ensuring that children with communication and language difficulties are identified early and placed at the new Communication & Interaction Free School and Big Picture Learning School.
Doncaster Local Transformation Plan The Local Transformation Plan demonstrates how we plan to develop Doncaster’s offer for children and young people who need support around their emotional wellbeing and mental health. The vision is to bring about whole system transformation, which is centred on the five themes from Future in Mind: 1. Promoting resilience, prevention and early intervention 2. Improving access to effective support 3. Care for the most vulnerable 4. Accountability and transparency 5. Developing the workforce The Clinical Commissioning Group and NHS partners, with support from the council have the strategic lead for improving access and quality of emotional and physical health services. Participation & Engagement Strategy Making Doncaster the most child-friendly borough in the country is a commitment from the Children & Young People’s Plan. The Participation and Engagement Strategy provides us with a partnership framework to ensure that we involve young people in the decisions about and for them. Parenting & Family Support Strategy In the coming months we will deliver The Parenting and Family Support Strategy. It is a vital part of supporting children and young people in Doncaster and we would like your views on the draft strategy. We believe confident parents and strong families give children love and protection, identity, a personal history and a secure base from which to explore and enjoy life as they grow up. The strategy will, therefore, be designed to support the following outcomes for parents: • Parents are prepared for parenthood and adapt to their child’s care and wellbeing needs as they get older • Parents understand and respond to their child’s health needs • Parents promote and support their child’s learning and future aspirations Improving how we Commission Services We are making the most of every pound we spend on services targeted at our children & young people. From a strategic level, decision makers across the partnership are meeting regularly to ensure that our money is spent effectively with minimal duplication. Our efforts to improve our approach to commissioning include a renewed focus on co-production with work currently on-going with Co:Create. We want to involve those who use our services to help design, deliver, and review our services effectively.
An Overarching Assessment of the Children & Young People’s Plan The Children & Young People’s Plan is the partnership plan in Doncaster. It sets out the things we need to do together to improve outcomes for children and young people and sits alongside individual organisation priorities. Therefore, the Plan has an impact beyond the areas noted in the themes and priorities.
Our Young People
Our young people assessed the impact of the plan over the past year.
“To be better in general, we need to take ideas from each other and become a better community” Young person, 14 Young people have been positive about the work to date and are already feeling a positive impact. There is an accompanying feeling of hope and expectation about the work planned across the borough. Our young people highlighted potential improvements as part of the review: • The plan does not address specific issues affecting the LGBTQ community or those with special educational needs or disabilities (SEND) • The plan does not help parents and guardians to help their own children; children & young people rely on them for advice and guidance Young people want: • Universal access to services and opportunities across the borough • Better information sharing between partners • Improvements in how we communicate with them; they are currently unaware of services and events available to them These cross-cutting suggestions would, in their view, achieve two things. Their outcomes would improve and their experience of services would improve.
“There needs to be sharing of good practice and a ‘core offer’ agreed across the borough so all children and young people have the same opportunities to learn, achieve, and contribute to their communities” Young person, 16
Professionals, across the various agencies, echoed those sentiments. They noted that the plan has: • Built a consensus across the borough; everyone agrees on the main issues facing Doncaster and the need to tackle them • Supported the growth of cross-agency working across the borough • Encouraged effective engagement with children & young people to influence service design and delivery These positive sentiments have contributed to genuine service improvements, improved outcomes and created momentum. This would not have been possible without strong, consistent leadership at a strategic level. This review has also highlighted aspects of the plan that still need work to ensure its success. The main point raised by professionals was the plan’s lack of visibility across the partnership. The plan, in its creation, built an outcome-focused consensus. All the agencies agreed that the themes and priorities in the plan focused on improving areas holding our children & young people back. It also set out work to address those problems that all the agencies agreed upon. 7
Unfortunately, after a year, agencies may have lost sight of the plan and this can lead to the following: • Undermines the efficacy of collaboration by reducing the visibility of common goals • Increases the likelihood of duplication or gaps in service delivery • Makes effective prioritisation more difficult • Removes a common language for work consequently increasing confusion and misunderstanding In short, we need to refresh the minds of agencies of the Children & Young People’s Plan. This is the only way to ensure sustainable improvements. The aforementioned successes of the plan have highlighted operational issues impeding collaborative working. This is a positive because these issues are easier to deal with compared to cultural or strategic ones. Agencies across the partnership want to overcome the operational issues; they all agree it will improve outcomes. It is the best way to deliver universal, accessible services for all our children & young people.
Analysis & Recommendations Following one year’s operation of delivery against the CYPP, an annual review of the effectiveness of performance monitoring arrangements took place which included: • A mapping of the CYPP dataset against the responsible strategic groups • The identification of a smaller number of Bellwether performance indicators by each of the strategic • The review and revision of targets for Bellwether and other PIs within the CYPP dataset The net effect of this work will improve functionality, by streamlining, removing duplication and enabling the Performance and Evaluation sub group, a sub group of the Children and Families Executive Board, to focus in greater detail on the Bellwether measures. Other recommendations coming out of our assessment include: Children & Young People 1. Improve provision targeted at vulnerable groups, including the LGBTQ community, those with SEND, and vulnerable young people 2. Create an accessible core offer of services so young people know what is available to them 3. Improve collaboration and cross-sector working across the partnership Further Recommendations 4. Make better use of the plan to inform decision making 5. Introduce better prioritisation to ensure effective delivery against the plan 6. Tackle operational issues to improve collaborative working; a focus should be on information sharing 7. Review governance arrangements to facilitate effective engagement with the plan
Thematic Breakdown of the Year SAFE
Children & Young People Priorities
Feel safe – knowing that they can safely live and thrive in the borough
Supported by someone they trust
Equipped to handle bullying – more resilient and better able to handle difficult situations
Key Priorities Children have access to the right services at the earliest opportunity
Domestic abuse practice is transformed across Doncaster
No child suffers significant harm as a result of neglect
Keep teenagers and young people safe
Summary of Progress: “Safe” OFSTED Rating Doncaster Children’s Services Trust (DCST) as “Good” This rating endorses the work the DCST has been doing in recent years to improve. This means services designed to protect the most vulnerable in Doncaster are fit for purpose. We keep children and young people “safe”. Domestic Abuse Specialists DCST has recruited a team of Domestic Abuse Navigators (DANs) to tackle cases involving domestic abuse. They support children & young people with the latest evidence-based therapeutic techniques. They have been so effective that no families have been re-referred after working with them. This will have a positive impact on the outcomes of all those they support. Care Leaver Accommodation DCST, St Leger Homes Doncaster, and Doncaster Council won the “Partnership Scheme of the Year Award” at the Northern Housing Awards and their work was recognised for how innovative and unique it was. They created independent living accommodation for care leavers. The accommodation has on-site support and access to a “Life Skills” programme. Before, too many care leavers were placed outside Doncaster for their housing needs. This was breaking up their support networks and limited their access to support programmes. The new approach will improve outcomes for those involved. At the end of 2017/18 financial year 89% of 19-21 aged care leavers were in suitable accomodation. Feedback from Children & Young People The feedback we received from children & young people sits in two categories; information, and safety in the community. Information Our young people feel safer when they have access to the right information and advice so they want more and they want it to be accessible. They made it clear that they rely on trusted adults and peers to inform their decision making. They want those people to have more information to help them. Currently, their trusted adults and peers are not equipped to help them.
“Help our parents so they can help us” Young Person, 10 9
Safety in the Community Our young people feel safe at school and at home but want to feel safer in the community. There are many issues causing this feeling including: • Homelessness & anti-social behaviour in town centres • Cyber Bullying • Negative treatment from adults in positions of power These issues impact secondary-aged young people more than their primary-aged peers. All noted the above issues as reasons for not feeling safe in their communities.
The next steps within this theme centre on demand management and tackling neglect. Demand Management Doncaster has high levels of deprivation and this translates into high demand on statutory services. However, nearly three quarters of social care assessments completed in the first 3 months of 2018 did not lead to statutory interventions. Insight work is underway to understand the true nature of increasing demand in Doncaster. Work will be focussing on building family and community resilience which in the medium to long term will have a positive impact on demand. Neglect Over 1 in 5 of referrals to social care had an element of neglect in them in the final 3 months of 2017. Of those, only 4% of cases with neglect have evidence of early involvement. There is a “Neglect Toolkit” designed to help professionals with this but it is not used consistently across the partnership. This is down to various issues such as awareness of its existence or a lack of understanding as to how neglect can be managed in the respective services. Addressing this will be a priority over the next year.
Analysis & Recommendations
Our children & young people are safe because of the services that we provide to our most vulnerable. There are improvements planned across the sector to continue this success into the future. However, more is needed to encourage a feeling of safety in our communities. The recommendations below will support the necessary improvements.
23% of new referrals had an element of neglect
only 4% of these cases have evidence of early involvement
Children & Young People 1. Share children and young people’s concerns and suggestions with South Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive and ask them to update us with any actions 2. Explore putting a help button in the interchange 3. Improve lighting and patrols around the arches near the interchange 4. Think Family – Think Community; help our communities to help us 5. Work with the police around our fears for our safety in the community 6. Improve safety and how young people get treated at the interchange Further Recommendations 7. Improve the use of Early Help services within the borough 8. Tackle demand management within Children’s Services 9. Improve the profile of the “Neglect Toolkit”
Happy & Healthy Children & Young People Priorities Better knowledge of services – what is available to them in their area
Reduced stigma around mental health – timely support and access to services
School Nurses to be available more around school and offer increased access
Key Priorities Children & Young People are healthy, have a sense of wellbeing and are resilient
Children have the best start in life
Children and Young People’s development is underpinned through a healthy lifestyle
Summary of Progress: “Happy & Healthy” Service Modernisation & Transformation Partners in the health sector have been going through a period of modernisation and transformation. In the past year this has meant moving towards digital and community-based solutions for service delivery and engaging more effectively with children & young people through specialist engagement groups. This has led to the following innovations: • An increase in community-based treatments for chronic physical and mental health conditions • A wider variety of services accessible through e-clinics with more planned for the future • Greater accessibility and distribution of information to children and young people Service Delivery: Mental Health & Physical Health We have successfully reduced waiting times and improved service accessibility within Mental Health and Physical Health services. In Mental Health Services, this has been achieved through a nearly threefold increase in workforce capacity across the sector and an increased focus on preventative services.
Workforce capacity has risen from 95 in June 2015 to 278 positions in October 2017
Consultant waiting times have been tackled for physical health services. The backlog of cases has been cleared and processes are in place to ensure that delays are minimised. This has been accompanied by a GP support service that ensures accurate referrals to consultants. Service Delivery: Early Years Our services relating to babies health were heavily focused on physical health criteria. We have redesigned them into “Community Groups” that offer a focus on parental education. This change has led to a reduction in the number of new parents accessing acute and emergency support.
Feedback from Children & Young People The feedback we received from children & young people sits in two categories; service awareness, and reducing stigma. Service Awareness
“Getting problems across to adults make my life a whole lot easier” Young Person, 12
Our children & young people consistently ask for the services on offer to them to be communicated to them better. They tell us that they want “better knowledge of services and what is available to them in the area”. The feedback we received this year has echoed this. They also noted that the lack of awareness appeared to extend beyond them. To repeat the point made in “Safe”, children & young people are concerned that trusted adults were not aware of what services were available to children & young people. Reducing Stigma Children & young people felt that we were not tackling the stigma surrounding mental health or cyber bullying. This was having a negative effect on the positive work we were doing on mental health services and other forms of bullying. Children & young people stated a need for more work to address specific issues facing the LGBTQ community and those with SEND. When looking at mental health and bullying, both groups face systemic issues that others do not and suffer as a result. Our children & young people also said those with SEND do not have equal opportunities to keep fit and healthy; they want a focus on accessibility of services and activities for SEND.
“I didn’t realise that more kids had the same problems I did”
Young Person, 13
Next Steps Oversight & Review There is currently a move towards universal provision within Doncaster with a focus on delivering more services in communities and making use of digital platforms more effectively. This work needs to continue so sustainable improvements can be made. More stringent approaches to monitoring performance and outcomes associated with services need introducing to improve decision making at a strategic level. Mental Health We are still behind on our target for Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) services being initiated within 8 weeks of referrals but services and capacity are improving. We also need to improve our approach to mental health and emotional resilience in schools. Work is underway to upskill school staff to support their pupils more effectively. Physical Health Levels of exercise are falling and impacting children & young people’s mental and physical health. Work is already under way in many areas, and the impact of this will hopefully be felt in the coming year. Across all health services, more is needed to address issues faced by vulnerable children & young people. Work is underway to map service provision to make improvements. We want services that lead to better outcomes for vulnerable people.
Analysis & Recommendations
Children & young people have been very positive about the improvements made within this theme. Capacity is increasing across services and they are more accessible as a result. More needs to be done to continue improvements and target areas of weakness such as our services aimed at Looked After Children and those with SEND. The recommendations below will support these improvements: Children & Young People 1. Improve the Local Offer, making sure it is creative, accessible to all, and well marketed to children & young people and families 2. Launch a campaign to raise awareness about Young Carers 3. Do more to tackle the stigma around mental health 4. Launch a campaign on Cyber Bullying 5. Improve accessibility to exercise for wheelchair users/all abilities Further Recommendations 6. Provide more services via digital platforms to make them more accessible and cost-effective 7. Complete planned work with schools to improve emotional resilience and mental health support 8. Construct a comprehensive directory of local services, activities, and information to make everything accessible
Achieve Children & Young People Priorities Life skills – making sure that they are prepared for adulthood
Pathways to employment – ensuring that they are moving towards good quality, sustainable work
A broad and balanced curriculum equipping them with the life skills they need to be independent and successful as an adult
Key Priorities Ensure that all children are school ready
All children attend a good or better setting and aspirations are raised to ensure they reach their full potential
Young people are equipped to access education, employment, or training in a way that supports future social mobility
Summary of Progress: “Achieve”
Work in this theme can be surmised by three programmes; the Social Mobility Opportunity Area, the Inclusion Programme and Starting Well. The Social Mobility Opportunity Area is a DfE funded programme that has allowed us, as a social mobility cold spot, to tackle issues related to social mobility through education. The Inclusion Programme tackles systemic issues with Doncaster that relate to attendance, behaviour, and special provision within our education system. Demand for services at times is outweighing capacity. All of this adversely impacts disadvantaged young people and creates social cost for Doncaster residents’ and we are working to tackle them effectively. The Starting Well Programme provides accessible, flexible and high quality effective early learning and childcare for all children. This has led to a continual improvement in the level of development of our children. The official measure for children with Good Levels of Development has been increasing . This is important for improving the future outcomes for our children as good development is a strong foundation for the future.
Social Mobility Opportunity Area We are a “Social Mobility Opportunity Area”. This designation from the Department for Education has given us access to £6m of funding to tackle issues that impede social mobility. Its work has a notable impact on this theme. Our Opportunity Area Delivery Plan has 4 priorities: • Building solid foundations for all children • Developing brilliant teaching and leadership for all secondary school pupils • Ensuring that no careers are out of bounds for Doncaster’s young people • Ensuring that opportunities extend to all young people in Doncaster The programme will last 3 years and has spawned key pieces of work like the Post 16 Review and teaching & leadership improvements for teachers.
Post 16 Review Our young people are not achieving enough level 3 qualifications to support their future ambitions or support Doncasterâ€™s potential. Young people and professionals agree; our landscape is not diverse enough to encourage achievement. Young people are not given clear pathways to employment, further education or training. The careers advice they are receiving was not helping them make informed decisions. Improving the capacity of mainstream schools to meet student needs
Ensuring that our provision outside of mainstream is appropriate and delivers outcomes and improved life chances
Ensuring that there is consistent assessment and decision making within the system
Improving engagement of more vulnerable families
Teaching & Leadership Our teaching & leadership offer is comprehensive according to professionals we engaged with. This is important in ensuring quality teaching with sustainable recruitment in all of our schools. We have made successful bids for Strategic School Improvement Funding and Partners in Learning have established a Research School. Both will ensure teaching methods are as effective as possible and lead to better educational attainment for our young people. Early Years Successes The increased take up of 2 year old entitlement to childcare in 2017 and 2018 is a positive. It is a considerable improvement compared to that reported in 2015 and is above national and regional averages. The take up of the universal entitlement and the extended entitlement to 30 hours for 3 and 4 year olds continues to increase and is above the national average. Also, 98.5% of Early Years providers rated Good or Outstanding by Ofsted in Doncaster against a national figure of 94%. Childcare and Early Years settings are 4th best in the region and 2nd best across statistical neighbours. We have more children than ever in early years settings which are rated Good or Outstanding by Ofsted. This links directly to the fact that over 70% of children have reached a Good Level of Development. This will have a positive impact on our childrenâ€™s outcomes in the years to come.
98.5% of Early Year providers acheived Good or Outstanding by Ofsted in Doncaster against the national figure of 94%
Attainment The Good Level of Development outcomes remain in line with the national average and have risen in each of the last 3 years. The headlines improvements at Key Stage 2 are shown below: Combined Reading, Writing and Maths improved by 7% compared to national improvement of 3%
. Writing improved by 3.6% compared to national improvement of 2.5%
Reading improved by 7.1% compared to national improvement of 4%.
Maths improved by 3.2% compared to national improvement of 0.5%
Grammar Punctuation and Spelling improved by 3% compared to national improvement of 1%
Though national comparison data is still awaited, Key Stage 2 outcomes for Year 6 children in the care of Doncaster were also encouraging. Combined Reading, Writing and Maths improved by 17% and Reading by 14%. However, Maths remained static and Grammar Punctuation and Spelling fell by 7%. In terms of reading which are of particular note, Doncaster has seen a 15% improvement overall since 2016 moving from 55% in 2016 to 70% in 2018, against a national improvement of 9% and those schools receiving targeted support for reading (35 schools) saw an increase of 20% since 2016, moving 46% to 66% in 2018. Provisional A level results are also showing improvement. The percentage of pupils in Doncaster achieving at least one A Level pass is now above national average by 1.7 percentage points an improvement of 2.3% since last year. The percentage of A and A* grades has also improved since last year by 2.3% and has closed the gap to national average. These improved results provide a helpful springboard for future developments and form part of a wider school improvement strategy. Inclusion Programme We will also continue our work in transforming the wider system so that needs are met at the earliest opportunity and our provision is always appropriate for all of our learners. The Inclusion Programme incorporates all of our work for making education more inclusive and stretches across the SEND agenda, alternative provision, attendance, and behaviour. Attendance and behaviour is an area for improvement within Doncaster. Our rates of persistent absenteeism are in excess of 25% in some secondary academies. We also rank 150th out of 152 Local Authorities nationally for our fixed term exclusion rate which is currently at 30.7% in secondary schools. Over half of these relate to persistent disruptive behaviour. The dominant patterns of persistent absenteeism in the secondary phases reflect the impact of exclusions and weak parental engagement for our more vulnerable families alongside the need to improve pastoral care, SEN planning and quality first teaching. We have completed a behaviour review and will work towards its recommendations. This will be completed alongside work with schools to improve their handling of absenteeism and preference for exclusions, supporting them with knowledge and capacity whilst challenging where practice is ineffective. This will ensure our young people spend more time in classrooms and improve their outcomes. The Attendance Strategy During 2017-2018 we have: • Directly intervened with over 80 schools, auditing practice and diagnosing areas for improvement • Have had over 80 schools attend our Attendance Networks where we share expectations and good practice • Reviewed all of the Local Authority procedures in order to improve the efficiency and impact of our work • Improved the data analysis within the Local Authority We will also continue our work in transforming the wider system so that needs are met at the earliest opportunity and our provision is always appropriate for all of our learners.
Feedback from Children & Young People Children & young people are positive about our work in this area. Their feedback can be aligned to two areas, preparing for adulthood, and extending opportunities. Preparing for Adulthood
Our young people are focused on adulthood and ensuring they have the right skills and qualifications they need to be successful. They feel that careers advice provision and life skills education are not comprehensive or accessible enough and want improvements. There were suggestions that the Voluntary, Community and Faith (VCF) sector could deliver more as extra-curricular activities in the community. Extending Opportunities
Attention was also given to those with SEND, and those with caring responsibilities. They wanted the disadvantages that these two groups face in education and during the post 16 transition to be addressed.
“There are massive inequalities in schools across Doncaster”
Young Person, 15
“We want schools to be more supportive of us and have a greater awareness about the importance of our caring responsibilities” Young Person, 15 Young carers struggle progressing into further or higher education, employment, or training as juggling those commitments with caring responsibilities is difficult. Those with SEND found that they had effective life skills education but, there were not enough supported internships and inclusive apprenticeships opportunities available.
Next Steps Inclusion Strategy Building on the work we have already set in motion, we will deliver an Inclusion Strategy. Within that, we will deliver the actions within the 3 year plan for transforming behaviour. This will include: • Building accountability, ownership and knowledge amongst schools alongside ensuring sufficient places of high quality provision for children with SEND and behavioural needs across the borough • Building on the momentum of the attendance strategy so that outcomes improve in this area • Delivering a cohesive Local Authority inclusion team that will use three evidence based approaches in order to allocate resources against the need of pupils and schools Social Mobility Opportunity Area The Opportunity Area will continue into the next year with underlying programmes of work delivering specific improvements to outcomes. It will grow in prominence and take on a lead role within the education sector for setting agendas and shaping improvements. School Improvement & Educational Attainment and Quality Teaching & Leadership Only 79.1% and 50% of our primary and secondary institutions are rated Good or Outstanding by Ofsted. We refreshed our StEPs strategy to make sure we offer schools more holistic support to improve. Our next steps will be expanding our approach and making it available to all schools in the area. 79.1% of Primary and 50% A focus in the coming year will be enacting the recommendations from the post of Secondary Schools are 16 review and targeting the transition between primary and secondary education. rated Good or Outstanding With Partners in Learning, we will continue to refine our professional development by Ofsted offer to improve recruitment and retention and the pedagogy in our schools.
Careers Information, Advice & Guidance The fragmentation of the sector means that service delivery varies across the borough. Work will continue on delivering the online platform for local careers advice. It will make the process as accessible as possible and work with schools to ensure they are able to get high quality provision for their pupils. We will work with schools, and the VCF sector, to deliver life skills education and ensure children & young people get the skills they need. We will also work with relevant partners to ensure that our secondary schools see the importance of good careers advice and guidance.
“We need more knowledge about what it is going to be like in later life” Young Person, 14
Analysis & Recommendations
We know the weaknesses we have in this area and there is a comprehensive plan in place for tackling them. The Opportunity Area and the Inclusion Programme offer opportunities to deliver the improvements we need. Issues include closing the gap in attainment between disadvantaged pupils and their peers more quickly particularly in the early years. Educational attainment, attendance and exclusion rates, and the quality of our schools, all hold our children & young people back. A focus on closing the gap in attainment between disadvantaged pupils and their peers more quickly particularly in the early years. The recommendations below will address these areas. Children & Young People 1. Make employment accessible by increasing the amount of supported internships and inclusive apprenticeships available 2. Provide support for future planning and accessing further and higher education to young people with caring responsibilities 3. Devise and deliver a core life skills programme that is accessible in communities throughout Doncaster 4. Provide us with opportunities to help others 5. Provide us with valuable experiences, not just information Further Recommendations 6. Tackle the challenges relating to key transition points for children across Doncaster, with a particular focus upon starting school and between primary and secondary phases of education 7. Facilitate wider cooperation and collaboration in the sector 8. Publish an Inclusion Strategy to address issues relating to SEND, attendance and behaviour 9. Extend support for new teachers beyond their first year to encourage retention 10. Complete the delivery of an online platform for careers advice
“We need to hear more about colleges and Apprenticeships” Young Person, 13
Equality Children & Young People Priorities Treated respectfully – seen as valuable members of society with something unique to bring to discussions
Listened to – make them feel that their opinion is valued. This should happen in a supportive, nurturing capacity or an informative capacity to enable to explore a variety of career paths
Better incentives – encouraging positive choices and patterns of behaviour
More positive stories – moving from a negative perception of young people to one which focuses on their strengths and achievements
Key Priorities Diminish the difference between disadvantaged and non-disadvantaged children and young people
Fewer children live in poverty
Summary of Progress: “Equality” Child Poverty Commission We wanted to gain an understanding of where we can support disadvantaged young people. The evidence gathering and workshops started in the first year of the Children & Young People’s Plan. The report will be out soon with its recommendations informing our approach to this area of work. Council Tax Exemptions We have made care leavers exempt from paying Council Tax until the age of 25. This is to ensure that we are supportive of those experiencing that risky transition from care to adulthood and not adding another hurdle on their road to independence. By removing this financial burden, they will be better placed to become financially independent.
Estimates suggest that almost 31% of all children in Doncaster live in poverty
Targeted Youth Work Expect Youth coordinates and promotes youth engagement and activities in the borough. Over the past year, the amount of young people that has been engaged in positive activities has increased notably. They also build community capacity to strengthen provisions for the community by the community. This includes, among other things: • Offering 15-16 year olds at risk of permanent exclusion opportunities to work or volunteer • Tackling school readiness issues with a coaching and mentoring programme Both have had a real impact on the children & young people involved. There were notable increases in confidence levels and core skills in both programmes.
Feedback from Children & Young People The “Equality” theme is an overarching one that touches on a lot of concerns raised in other themes. Young people want the information they receive to be accessible, easy to understand, and to be safe from negativity. Children & young people are vital, and valued, members of our communities. They are the foundation for a successful future that we are building for Doncaster. They know this. Their feedback reflected frustration about the fact their successes are underreported. The consequence is negative behaviour aimed at our young people based on negative perceptions. Young people want and deserve respect so their frustration is valid.
“We want information in a format that is for young people, somewhere we recognise as a safe platform that has all of the information we need in one place” Young Person, 13
Related to this, our children & young people want their successes celebrating. These successes must go beyond academic success to look at community and creative contributions. They want to create a positive narrative for young people in the community. This is not to escape the positives that children & young people highlighted in their feedback. Agencies and organisations are making more use of their contributions.
Although our focus this year has been on closing the equality gap, stubborn problems remain. Disadvantaged young people still do not achieve the same educational successes that their peers do. Their access to services is not as easy as their peers. Unfortunately, our young people still face negativity and discrimination because of the actions of a minority of them. This is all confounded by the fact that levels of poverty in the borough are rising and services are changing. This is a problem. Young people deserve fair access to services and opportunities regardless of their circumstances. They also deserve to be treated respectfully and without suspicion. In the next year, more work will be focused on supporting disadvantaged people. The Child Poverty Commission’s Report will be published too. Its recommendations will focus work on areas that impact this disadvantaged group.
“There needs to be sharing of good practice and a “core offer” agreed across the borough so all children and young people have the same opportunities to learn, achieve, and contribute to their communities”
Young Person, 16
Analysis & Recommendations
Socio-economic equality remains a stubborn issue in Doncaster and its impact on outcomes cannot be understated. With the Social Mobility Opportunity Area and Child Poverty Commission, we are targeting services more effectively to support children & young people but, the “equality gap” still remains. We are using children & young people to inform our decision making more effectively but we need to improve the perceptions of young people that permeate our communities. The recommendations below address these concerns: Children & Young People 1. P rovide accessible and easy-to-follow transport information on the Local Offer to support children & young people with disabilities 2. Improve the way you share information with young people 3. Reward us and showcase what Doncaster children and young people are capable of 4. Continue to campaign for improved transport across the borough Other 5. Renew focus on disadvantage and poverty 6. Deliver the recommendations in the Child Poverty Commission
Future Focus The next step in the implementation of our plan is ensuring that we continue delivering work that has a notable impact. This means maintaining and nurturing the consensus for change and continuing along the path set out with the plan. It also means ensuring that young people are still getting the improvements they need in the way they need them. The momentum that our plan has generated in its first year of existence will continue. We will put the plan at the centre of everything that the partnership is doing and highlight its priorities effectively. The plan’s performance framework will also be adopted and utilised more extensively. The baseline it has created in its first year can go on to shape our decisions and better track the impact of our work as we progress. The future focus of the majority of the agencies involved is a continuation of the work they have already initiated. There will be a greater focus on managing demand and providing earlier access to information and services. All agencies “Changes are gunna happen and services are involved in some form of modernisation or and it’s going to help our improvement process to deliver better services. In addition the Place Plan and the Social Mobility Opportunity Area in particular generation” Young Person, 10 will shape the focus of the partnership over the next year.
Doncaster Clinical Commissioning Group
When launching the Plan we committed to evaluating its impact on an annual basis to ensure progress was being made in realising our shared a...
Published on Sep 11, 2018
When launching the Plan we committed to evaluating its impact on an annual basis to ensure progress was being made in realising our shared a...