Decision details

Children Looked After and Care Leavers Strategy 2022-2025

Decision Maker: Children, Young People & Education Committee

Decision status: Recommendations Approved

Is Key decision?: Yes

Is subject to call in?: Yes


The purpose of the report is to present members of the Children, Young People and Education Committee with the Children Looked After (CLA) and Care Leavers Strategy 2022-2025. The Strategy sets out the local authority and partners’ plans as ‘corporate parents’ to “ensure children looked after and care leavers are valued, listened to and supported to be aspirational, to build positive relationships and achieve their full potential”.

It identifies several key priorities for focus over the next three years. These are:

1. Emotional and physical health and wellbeing – making sure you are happy and healthy all the way through your childhood and into adulthood. Enabling you to build positive relationships, strengthen your sense of identity and understand your life experiences.

2. Independence and transition to adulthood – Focussing on helping you learn ‘life skills’ from an early age and getting everything in place so you can be supported if you need it after you turn 18

3. Positive Lived Experiences – Making sure there are enough of the right people to look after you in suitable homes whether this is a short or long stay/time.

4. Education and Employment – Ensuring that you do well, have the right support in school and have the right opportunities to access employment Underpinning each priority will be the fundamental principle to listen to the ‘voice and of the child and young people’. Attached at appendix A is a copy of the draft Strategy. A child-friendly version is attached at appendix B. The Strategy replaces the previous Corporate Parenting Strategy which expired in 2021. The Children Looked After and Care Leavers Strategy 2022-25 supports the Wirral Plan 2021-26 theme Brighter Futures.

This is a key decision as it impacts on all wards.


Resolved – That

(1) the Children Looked After and Care Leavers Strategy 2022-2025 be endorsed and;

(2) an update on the progress of the Strategy in 12 months be brought to the committee in 12 months.


Reasons for the decision:

The local authority has a responsibility as ‘corporate parents’ to provide the best possible care and safeguards for children looked after. This is not just to keep children safe, but also to promote recovery, resilience and wellbeing.


The Strategy provides an opportunity to agree the strategic direction for the council as corporate parents and to provide guidance and direction for colleagues and operational managers who work across the Service who directly support young people

Alternative options considered:

Refresh the Corporate Parenting Strategy: One option could be to refresh the Corporate Parenting Strategy. However, during development discussions it was considered important to reflect priorities about both children looked after and care leavers which would be better approached through a broader strategy.


Do nothing: The Ofsted inspection framework reviews the leadership of the Council and its approach and support for children looked after. The framework also looks at how young people are supported with emotional, education and care from an operational perspective. This Strategy provides an opportunity both to demonstrate how the council proactively prioritises the needs of children looked after whilst at the same time identifying operational change and improvement practice that will ensure that young people are looked after well.

Report author: Hannah Myers

Publication date: 11/03/2022

Date of decision: 10/03/2022

Decided at meeting: 10/03/2022 - Children, Young People & Education Committee

Effective from: 17/03/2022

Accompanying Documents: