Agenda and minutes

Corporate Parenting Committee
Thursday 16 April 2015 5.00 pm

Venue: Board Rooms 4/5 - Brent Civic Centre, Engineers Way, Wembley HA9 0FJ. View directions

Contact: Anne Reid, Democratic Services  020 8937 1359, Email: anne.reid@brent.gov.uk

Items
No. Item

1.

Minutes of the previous meeting pdf icon PDF 64 KB

Minutes:

RESOLVED:-

 

that the minutes of the previous meeting held on 12 February 2015 be approved as an accurate record of the meeting subject to the following amendments:

 

·         Under ‘Minutes of the previous meeting’, amend the date to read ‘11 December 2014’

·         Under ‘Children in Care – feedback on Transition to Independence document’:

o   Insert the word ‘been’ in the third sentence of the first paragraph, to read: “Discussion included the impact of leaving foster care and what could have been put in place to make the move easier’.

o   Replace ‘An’ with ‘A’ at the start of the fourth sentence of the first paragraph.

o   Delete ‘were’ from the first sentence of the last paragraph to read ‘Members welcomed the initiative and were impressed by the feedback from the CIA which illustrated the enormity of the transition’.

2.

Matters arising

Minutes:

With reference to the Fostering Quarter 3 report, the committee discussed appropriate solutions to address the issue of children’s social workers sometimes being unable to attend the Fostering Panel. Gail Tolley noted that current procedures required that a supervisor attend in their place or written views are submitted. The committee agreed that it was important to ensure that this procedure was strictly followed.

3.

Children in Care - questions and answers

This is an opportunity for members of the Children In Care Council (CIA) to feedback on recent activity.

Minutes:

Caroline MacGinnis (Care in Action) advised that the CIA had undertaken work with respect to the Brent Pledge to children and young people in care. It had been found that the previous pledge had been a little outdated and significantly, there had been no contacts provided should a child or young person find that any of the promises were not being kept. The updated version provided the necessary contact details and made better use of pictures and photographs to make it more relevant to young people. The CIA group were now very happy with the revised version. It was further reported that the group had been thinking of names for the CIA website, one of which was iCare.

 

Paul Egunjobi advised that the group had discussed the new arrangements for meeting with the Lead Member and Director and had agreed that it would be useful for them to attend CIA group meetings; this would promote a better understanding of the issues discussed and of importance to the CIA members. Gail Tolley added that she and Councillor Moher had since attended a meeting of the group and it had gone very well.

 

Leilani Mensah-Manuel (Chair, CIA) advised that she was resigning as Chair due to other commitments. A vote had been taken and Caroline MacGinnis would continue as Vice Chair but she emphasised that the next twelve months would be about building the confidence of younger members to take on these roles. Responding to a query, Caroline MacGinnis advised that the CIA was now comprised of three groups, Junior, Older and Care Leavers and it was expected that someone from the Older group might be best placed to take on these additional roles.

 

The Chair thanked the representatives from the CIA for the update.

 

RESOLVED:

 

That Leilani Mensah-Manuel be thanked for her work as Chair of Care In Action.

 

4.

Corporate Parenting presentation

The committee will receive an initial presentation on the performance of corporate parenting for 2014/15 with a view to agreeing the format for the final Annual Corporate Parenting Report 2014/15, which will be presented to the committee in July 2015.

Minutes:

Gail Tolley (Strategic Director, Children and Young People) introduced a presentation regarding the committee’s annual report which it was required to produce with respect to its activities for the past year. This would be the first annual report of the committee and members’ views were sought regarding the issues to be highlighted for scrutiny. The presentation outlined the key aspects to be addressed in the report including a comprehensive profile of  Brent’s children in care and care leavers, benchmarking data for comparative neighbours, the Health and Wellbeing of the cohort, numbers, actions and procedures regarding missing children, child sexual exploitation and educational attainment of Looked After children. The report would also identify areas for further scrutiny over the next twelve month period based on the committee’s work programme.

 

In the subsequent discussion, the committee suggested that networking opportunities for children in care and care leavers should be explored. Graham Genoni advised that a meeting could be organised between West London Care In Action groups and confirmed that he would pursue this.  A member further suggested that the report include a section on children who had left the council’s care to reflect that the council’s continued interest in their welfare. The committee agreed that the council should ensure that those care leavers who wanted to remain in contact with the council were facilitated to do so. Caroline MacGinnis (Vice Chair of CIA) expressed her support of such an initiative. Gail Tolley agreed that the report could be brought alive by the inclusion of the views of children in care and care leavers. 

 

Gail Tolley advised that the final report would be submitted to the committee for consideration at its next meeting.

 

RESOLVED:

 

That the suggestions of the committee be incorporated into the committee’s annual report.

5.

Forward Plan pdf icon PDF 66 KB

The forward plan for the committee is attached for members’ information.

Minutes:

RESOLVED:

 

That the committee’s forward plan be noted.

6.

Any other urgent business

Notice of items to be raised under this heading must be given in writing to the Democratic Services Manager or his representative before the meeting in accordance with Standing Order 64.

Minutes:

None.

7.

Dates of future meetings

Future meeting dates will be confirmed following the annual Council meeting in May 2015.

Minutes:

The committee noted that the dates of the next meetings would be confirmed following the Annual Council meeting scheduled for May 2015.