Corporate Parenting Panel


MINUTES of a meeting of the Corporate Parenting Panel held at Council Chamber, County Hall, Lewes on 28 October 2022.





Councillor Sam Adeniji, Councillor Bob Bowdler, Kathryn Field (Chair) and Councillor Sorrell Marlow-Eastwood.




Kathy Marriott – Assistant Director, Early Help and Social Care


Teresa Lavelle-Hill – Head of Looked After Children Services

Nicola Scott – Operations Manager, Residential LAC Services

Sally Hodson - Operations Manager, Children’s Disability Service, Residential and Directly Provided Services, ISEND

Mandy Lewes – Head of Virtual School

Ian Williams – Registered Home Manager

Georgina Seligmann – Governance and Democracy Manager





13.         Minutes of the meeting held on 29 July 2022


13.1     RESOLVED to agree as a correct record the minutes of the meeting held on 29 July 2022.




14.         Apologies for absence


14.1    Apologies were received from Councillor Matthew Milligan, Councillor Colin Swansborough and Councillor Johnny Denis.




15.         Disclosure of Interests


15.1     There were none.




16.         Urgent items


16.1    There were no urgent items.




17.         Exclusion of Press and Public


17.1    RESOLVED to exclude the public and press from the meeting for items 6 and 7 on the agenda (see minutes 18 and 19) on the grounds that if the public and press were present there would be disclosure to them of exempt information as specified in category 1 of Part 1 of Schedule 12(A) of the Local Government Act 1972 (as amended), namely information relating to any individual. It was considered that the public interest in maintaining the exception outweighed the public interest in disclosing the information.




18.         Quarterly Registered Children's Homes Report


18.1     The Panel considered Quarterly Registered Children’s Home reports for the following Children’s Homes:


·         Brodrick House

·         Homefield Cottage

·         Hazel Lodge

·         Lansdowne Secure Children’s Home

·         Acorns

·         The Bungalow


18.2     The Panel considered Ofsted Inspection reports for the following Children’s Homes:


·         Silver Birches

·         Lansdowne Secure Children’s Home


18.3     The Panel welcomed the reports and received a verbal update from the Operational Managers. The Panel were satisfied that the Home Managers had appropriate action plans in place to address the recommendations within the reports.


18.4     The Panel RESOLVED to note the report.




19.         Any other exempt items considered urgent by the Chair.


19.1     There were none.




20.         Virtual School Annual Report


20.1     The Panel received the Virtual School Annual Report. Mandy Lewis Head of Virtual School drew the Panel’s attention to the following points:


·         The Service has experienced an increase in numbers, 465 at times, and remains involved with recent care leavers to ensure they have an appropriate placement. The average case load for staff is now 80 – 100.

·         Funding – staffing and training and transport, key to keep the children at their existing school if they move area, working closely with other services to ensure all children are supported.

·         Individual Education Plans (IEPs) twice a year and vital to planning and support of those young people. PEPs should be robust and high quality, auditing work in train to ensure there is a strategy in place to improve the quality.


Data (2019 formal comparison point):

·         KS1 results were very positive and higher that national average

·         KS2 Reading expected levels risen to 44% and are nationally in line for Maths and Writing, the progress score is really high for these children

·         KS4 Level 5 4.2% - 16% 2022 Level 4 from 8.1% 2019 – 27% 2022 with a 9 for PE for one pupil

·         Exclusions and FTEs high but working together to challenge those outcomes to find alternatives to suspension, there have been no permanent exclusions

·         93% attendance so in line with average but persistent absence lower, high profile matter across East Sussex schools

·         75% met all learning targets, all children met at least one target


Further points raised:

·         Developing relationship with main providers of Alternative Provision, mainly children on part time timetables, supporting them to re-engage and build their self-esteem

·         Children in Need review advised focus on outcomes for children with a social worker, better tracking, strategic responsibility, consultation period concluded and action plan devised, advice being provided to social workers alongside this

·         Pilot for post 16 funding project last year, continuing for this year too, enabled offer of teaching to post 16s in college, asylum seekers can access this training

·         The Panel noted the discussion with the Children in Care Council about how they would like to be managed in school, extension of duties and Post 16 pilot

·         The Panel acknowledged the work undertaken in reducing fixed term exclusions


20.2     The Panel RESOLVED to note the report.




21.         Look After Children's (LAC) Annual Report


21.1     The Panel received the Annual Looked After Children Report. Sally Carnie, Head of LAC Services drew the Panel’s attention to the following points:

·         Delays in court have contributed to drop in Adoption levels. There are complex cases for the current LAC group and it can be challenging to place these children as a result. The Service prefer to achieve adoption even if this means there is a delay as it ambitious for the children

·         The Service remains ambitious for the provision of the mental health services for LAC children

·         School attendance and missing students are not necessarily representative of an unsuccessful placement however support to families when child put onto a part time placement can impact the viability of the placement if support is not in place

·         Alternative provision is always sought

·         Structured service to oversee County Lines strategy so as to identify those at risk and then a multi-agency plan implemented to reduce the risk, some children are drawn into it


21.2     The Panel RESOLVED to note the report and requested that the following information is included in future reports:

·         LAC leavers now working at or with East Sussex County Council; and

·         further breakdown of data for unaccompanied children in East Sussex





22.         Looked After Children (LAC) Statistics


22.1     The Panel considered a report by the Director of Children’s Services which provided an update on Looked After Children (LAC) statistics.


22.2     Kathy Marriott, Assistant Director, Early Help and Social Care updated the Panel on the latest position for Looked After Children in East Sussex. During the last quarter, a total of 630 children were living in care, a slight fall from the last quarter. Of this total 352 children are in Foster Care, a slight decrease, with high levels remaining within in house provision; 88 in kinship care (a slight increase), 19 placed for adoption, 70 in supported housing (static) 77 children in homes.


22.3     2 children are in a secure unit with 1 child placed in an external secure unit. There are no children remanded into custody. There are 65 unaccompanied asylum-seeking children.  There has been an increase in care leavers (children over 18 years old). Special Guardianship orders have increased to 478.


22.4     It has been a challenging quarter with number a of complex cases and ability to find placements for them. From 2021 it’s illegal to place a child with an unregistered placement, there is1 case therefore an update will be provided to the panel on this in future.


22.5     The Panel RESOLVED to note the report and agreed that an update on changes to the law and data provision will be brought to the next meeting.




23.         Presentation on proposed new approach to Corporate Panel Parenting (CPP)


23.1     The Panel received a presentation from Kathy Marriot, Assistant Director, Early Help and Social Care outlining the suggested revised approach to the Corporate Parenting Panel

23.2     The Panel discussed the recommendations and was in favour of some revisions to the format of future meetings and for the following options to be considered:

·         Each meeting will have an overriding theme and report authors will draw out key data from the standing reports

·         Officers and key partners will be invited to attend future meetings to ensure the Panel hears directly from relevant stakeholders

·         The Panel will have sight of the report for the national panel


23.3     It was agreed that a revised format and thematic approach will be agreed ahead of the next meeting.

23.4     The Panel RESOLVED to adopt the new approach as recommended from the next meeting on 20 January 2023.




24.         Any other non-exempt items considered urgent by the Chair.


24.1     There were none.






The meeting ended at 12:14pm.


Councillor Kathryn Field