ASCL comment on Children’s Social Care Implementation Strategy

Margaret Mulholland, SEND and Inclusion Specialist at the Association of School and College Leaders, responds to the announcement of the government’s Children’s Social Care Implementation Strategy.
“An overhaul of children’s social care is long overdue. Vulnerable children and those from disadvantaged backgrounds have lower attainment than their peers. This is evident at a young age and early intervention is key to ensuring children are arriving at school in a fit state to learn.
“We welcome the funding for extra help for families but it follows a decade of cuts to support services such as Sure Start, as well as a pandemic which has exacerbated a range of mental health issues. School and college leaders witness the impact of this on a daily basis, often being left to pick up the pieces as the de facto fourth emergency service. Stretched budgets mean it is a challenge to provide the pastoral and specialist support that is often required to help vulnerable pupils. It is disappointing that there is no recognition of this in today’s announcement. A joined-up approach involving schools, local authorities and other services is surely the best way forward.”