Agenda and minutes

Venue: Professional Excellence Centre, Acre Lane, Bromborough

Contact: Tracy Little  Children and Young People's Department

No. Item


09:00 Apologies and Introductions


09:05 Declarations of Interest


Bev Morgan and Mary Kilcoyne declared an interest in the commissioning item (147) by virtue of them providing a commissioned service.



09:10 Minutes of the Last Meeting pdf icon PDF 764 KB


Agreed as a true record.


09:20 Health Visitor Development Plan and Family Nurse Partnership


Rose Curtis gave a presentation on the commissioning of children’s CAMHS and maternity services.  Rose gave an overview of the changes in services over the last 3 years, which include a unified management structure, area based teams, an improved reach to vulnerable families and the establishment of the Family Nurse Partnership. New changes to be made to commissioning include the move to the National Commissioning Board and from 2015 the transfer to Public Health within the Local Authority.


Viv Harrison, Nurse Manager for Health Visiting, gave an update on National Policy Developments to Health Visiting arrangements.  Wirral was an early adopter of the new model by implementing the new model for 2012.


The new Health Visiting Services provides universal services to all families and more focussed intensive work with families.  Health Visitors are located around the Borough geographically based on need.  The Health Visitors deliver the Healthy Child Programme and make contact with women antenatally and at various stages throughout the first 2- 2½ years of a childs life.  There is a strong focus on maternal mental health, which impacts on levels of care and bonding between mother and child.


The service is doing well and the numbers of children being seen at 9-12 months and 2-2½ years is now almost 100%.  The Health Visitors also provide breastfeeding support; and access to services has been improved with a Healthy Child clinic and a “choose and book” system for appointments and evening parent classes.


Health Visitors receive training to enable them to deliver the HCP, including screening techniques and observation of parent and child interaction.Further developments include a move to a ‘paperless’ office and a move to electronic records.


Ann Buckley, supervisor of the Family Nurse Partnership, outlined the role of a Family Nurse (FN).  FNs work with families and young women, this service is offered to first time mothers under twenty, as these are the most at risk group.  They work intensively with young parents for the first 2½ years of the child’s life.  The FNs work to support young mothers with their parenting and external studies have shown that FNP intervention can lead to reduced levels child injuries, improved school readiness and an increase in levels of employment and paternal involvement.  The approach is a therapeutic alliance with the client with a focus on bonding and attachment.


Councillor Smith thanked the team for their presentations and hard work within the services.


Councillor Smith asked about the capacity issues at nurseries for children referred to the service.  Viv responded that the decision on place allocation is based on the vulnerability of the child.  Councillor Clements asked if this was a funding issue which should be addressed.  She asked to clarify the difference between the EYFS 2 year check and the HCP 2 year check.  Rose responded that work is undertaken locally to align these checks.

Dennis Charlton asked how fathers are engaged by the FNP and how that is embedded throughout services.  Ann responded that the mothers are the link  ...  view the full minutes text for item 143.


09:50 Safeguarding Board - Quarterly Update pdf icon PDF 51 KB


Dennis Charlton, Chair of LSCB noted that the “Working Together” papers are due from Central Government any time; there has been a national delay.  The next guidance is expected to be vastly reduced.  Once the paper is released the WLSCB will evaluate all procedures currently in place.


It is expected that the focus will move away from performance measures on processes and shift to improving outcomes for children.


Dennis added that the LSCB are working closely with Merseyside Police to look at preventing child sexual exploitation, work is also underway with Barnados.


Dennis updated that work is being done to look into the feasibility of a Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub (MASH), this work is being led by Merseyside Policy.  The LSCB will be required to agree the MASH model.  Once this has been developed and approved it will come back to the WCT Board.


Ch. Supt. John Martin added that there are lots of restructures and changes occurring across partners, that this was a good time to look at how MASH will work.  He added that sharing knowledge to improve outcomes was the way forward.  In addition at the time of austerity sharing resources will be a key to service delivery.


Dennis commented on the changes in the Serious Case Review publication rules and that a requirement is that a redacted SCR should be published once completed.  It is expected that full publication will be required nationally.  Dennis voiced his concern about the possible impact on surviving siblings/family.


Caroline McKenna informed the Board about a current serious case review.


Dennis said that the new inspection regime will look at how the LSCB works to challenge the Wirral Children’s Trust Board.  Dennis requested colleagues to think about how this might take place and what it might look like.


Julie commented that the review of the provision of preventative services would be a good place to start.


Kathryn Podmore asked how the learning from SCR action plans is monitored or reported to the Children’s Trust Board.  Caroline added the LSCB are responsible for the delivery of the SCR learning.



10:05 Child Poverty pdf icon PDF 56 KB




Lyn Loughran gave a brief demonstration on how to access the Child Poverty training e-learning.


Bev Morgan commented that all members of staff do the training at all levels of the organisation.  It is requested that Board members have a look at the training and get back to Lyn Loughran by 22nd February with any changes or recommendations.


Bev updated that a work area is being developed to look at the use of community assets and how they may be used to provide services/events for children and young people.


The next work area is to look at the impact of changes to the welfare system and the mitigation that can be put in place to support families.



10:35 Integrated Behaviour Strategy pdf icon PDF 48 KB

Additional documents:


Steve Dainty outlined the background to the development of the Behaviour Strategy.  Updating that a proposed managed move strategy has been developed and approved by PHCG and will be sent to Governors in spring meeting for approval, prior to adoption as policy. The managed moves process is used to reduce the likelihood of exclusion by moving a child to another school, giving them a “fresh start” and benefit of a different peer group.


Steve, alongside Phil Sheridan have compiled a draft Integrated Behaviour Strategy, this outlines the principles to underpin all behaviour and attendance work in Wirral.


In respect of Personal Education Plans (PEPs) for Looked After Children, these are all being reviewed to ensure they are robust and appropriate for each child.


This draft version is still in development and the next steps are to firm up the draft with feedback and consultation with schools.  It will then be sent to overview and scrutiny.  Work is needed to develop some clear performance measures to monitor the effectiveness of the policy.


Resolved: The Board note the report.




10:55 Commissioning Update pdf icon PDF 65 KB


Maureen McDaid gave an overview of the report, outlining the background to commissioning.  The latest EIG provider’s forum took place on 9th January and provided an opportunity for commissioners and providers to look at exit strategies, for services that are known to be stopping in March 2013.


The priority areas for commissioning in 2013/14 include:


Area 1  Parenting and Family Support

Area 2  Short Breaks for Disabled Children

Area 3  Risk Taking Behaviour and CYP

Area 4  Specialist Areas

Area 5  Intensive Family Intervention Programme


Julia Hassall thanked Maureen for her work on the commissioning cycle.  She added that the budget lines for commissioning are not yet determined as some of the funding lines are within the Officer Budget Options for savings.  These are out to consultation and will go to Cabinet on ?.  Followed by the final commissioning report to Cabinet on ?.



11:10 Positive Contribution Strategy Group Annual Update pdf icon PDF 123 KB


Maureen McDaid gave the annual report for the Positive Contribution Strategy Group. She outlined that the work of the group is balanced between ensuring that targeted interventions enable vulnerable  and at risk young people to move on to more universal developmental activities and maximise the opportunities presented by positive activities  such as those funded by the Early Intervention Grant.


Key recent achievements include:


  • 1228 Alcohol Alright! Interventions were delivered to young people and which contributed to 529 young people reporting an increased awareness of the dangers of alcohol.
  • 22 young people including some from the children in Care Council (CiCC) took part in take over day and shadowed the Council Leader, Directors and staff from partner organisations.



Maureen noted that key issues for the group include maintaining the balance in the work of the strategy group between targeted statutory interventions and universal open access opportunities for young people to engage in the decision making process. In light of the current economic climate, the provision of such a wide range of opportunities for young people is not assured for the future. The challenge will be to identify a sustainable approach to enable children and young people to make a positive contribution.


Maureen added that the threats the group faced included:


1.  Budget pressures across the partnership will reduce resource available.

2.  Capacity of partners involved to deliver against the expectations of partners.

3.  Positive Contribution is not a statutory duty and can be vulnerable to change in priorities.



Councillor Smith thanked Maureen for her report and work in this area.


Julie commented that the recent Youth Parliament debates were excellent and driven by the young people.  Topics included the arming of the police, internet cafes in parks and the apprenticeships schemes.


Councillor Smith added that elected members also enjoyed the Youth Parliament and that the discussion/debates were relevant and strong.


He also added that the group trip to London received excellent feedback from the children who were involved.



11:35 Children's Workforce Training Needs Analysis pdf icon PDF 67 KB

Additional documents:


Item postponed.