• Leeds Partners in Practice: reimagining child welfare services for the 21st century: final evaluation report

      Harris, Julie Philippa; Tinarwo, Moreblessing; Ramanathan, Ramakrishnan; University of Bedfordshire (Department for Education, 2020-04-30)
      Leeds introduced restorative practice in Round 1 of the Department for Education’s (DfE) Children’s Social Care Innovation Programme through ‘Family Valued’ (March 2015 to December 2016): a workforce development programme amongst children’s services, partners and Family Group Conferencing (FGC) as an approach to working with families through FGC. Restorative practice recognises the strengths and resources that families have available to them. It aims to engage individuals as active participants in identifying problems and finding solutions. In so doing, it underlines the importance of doing ‘with’ families rather than ‘for’ or ‘to’, thus achieving greater collaboration between families and services towards common goals. In 2010, a city-wide locality model introduced 25 geographical ‘clusters’ based on the ‘Extended Schools’ service model. Cluster services provide parenting support and early help, and other targeted support services, alongside education. Children’s services were re-configured to align with these areas with the aim of improving multi-agency working and co-ordination. The Family Valued programme identified six clusters that collectively receive 50 per cent of referrals for children’s services in Leeds, indicating high levels of need and high demand for services. A seventh geographical area of high need and demand for services was identified and incorporated into the programme.