Agenda and minutes

Moved from 3 October 2022, Corporate Parenting Panel - Thursday 20 October 2022 6.00 pm

Venue: Council Chamber, Harrow Civic Centre, Station Road, Harrow, HA1 2XY. View directions

Contact: Nikoleta Kemp, Senior Democratic & Electoral Services Officer  Tel: 07761 405898 E-mail:


No. Item


Attendance by Reserve Members

To note the attendance at this meeting of any duly appointed Reserve Members.


Reserve Members may attend meetings:-


(i)            to take the place of an ordinary Member for whom they are a reserve;

(ii)          where the ordinary Member will be absent for the whole of the meeting; and

(iii)         the meeting notes at the start of the meeting at the item ‘Reserves’ that the Reserve Member is or will be attending as a reserve;

(iv)         if a Reserve Member whose intention to attend has been noted arrives after the commencement of the meeting, then that Reserve Member can only act as a Member from the start of the next item of business on the agenda after his/her arrival.

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RESOLVED:  To note the attendance at this meeting of the following duly appointed Reserve Members:-


Ordinary Member


Reserve Member


Councillor Aneka Shah-Levy

Councillor Sasi Suresh



Declarations of Interest pdf icon PDF 55 KB

To receive declarations of disclosable pecuniary or non pecuniary interests, arising from business to be transacted at this meeting, from:


(a)          all Members of the Panel;

(b)          all other Members present.

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RESOLVED:  To note that the following interests were declared:


All agenda items

Councillor Hitesh Karia declared a non-pecuniary interest in that he worked for an organization that provided certain children’s services.  He would remain in the room whilst the matters were considered and voted upon.


Minutes pdf icon PDF 146 KB

That the minutes of the meeting held on 13 July 2022 be taken as read and signed as a correct record.

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RESOLVED:  That the minutes of the meeting held on 13 July 2022 be taken as a read and signed correct record.


Petitions, Public Questions and Petitions

To receive any public questions received in accordance with paragraph 16 of the Executive Procedure Rules.


Questions will be asked in the order in which they were received.  There will be a time limit of 15 minutes for the asking and answering of public questions.


[The deadline for receipt of public questions if 3.00 pm, 17 October 2022.  Questions should be sent to

No person may submit more than one question].

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RESOLVED:  To note that no public questions or petitions had been received or deputations made.



To receive petitions (if any) submitted by members of the public/Councillors under the provisions of Executive Procedure Rule 47 (Part 4D of the Constitution).

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RESOLVED:  To note that no petitions were received.



To receive deputations (if any) under the provisions of Executive Procedure Rule 48 (Part 4D of the Constitution).

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RESOLVED:  To note that deputations were received.

Resolved Items

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Update from care experienced young people about their experiences

Verbal update.

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Members welcomed a care experienced young person who had recently graduated as a Social Worker and Joy Bell, the recently appointed Participation Officer.  A further young person had been unable to attend due to previously scheduled maths tuition.


The Head of Corporate Parenting asked the young person in attendance to share what support Harrow had given her in her aspirations and what in retrospect might have helped, particularly given her more recent knowledge as a newly qualified social worker. 


The young person reported on her experience of being looked-after by Harrow Council and receiving leaving care services.  She stated that at the time of growing up in care she had been unaware of the active support that was given, for example listening to her request for a long term placement.  It had been recognised that she wished to advocate for herself and lead meetings. She had received very good support during GCSEs, the Virtual school were aware of her motivation and provided support and extra-curricular assistance.  She expressed the view that many young people did not understand the concept of pathway plans, and doubted whether half of them read it.  After the first review she had learned the benefit but it took four reviews before she realised people’s roles.  Her attendance at a number of interview panels for social work staff had been very helpful both in showing how candidates were filtered and graded but also taught her how bias was taken out and what the candidates brought to the table.  Her personal advisor was a turning point in life, someone who understood her.


In response to a question as to her experience of health assessments, she stated that she had not understood the intention, she had felt continually screened and at the time had not understood why she was withdrawn from class to, for instance, have weight and height checked.  She welcomed the suggestion of a shadowing opportunity and it was agreed that the Named Nurse for Children Looked After in Harrow would offer this.


The Participation Officer stated that she had been the Social Worker for the second young person for three years.  The young person had recently turned 16 and was studying at a performance arts college.  He had felt well supported during his recent transition, had moved away from where he was living and aimed to attend university when 18.  He considered that his aspirations were really well supported such as her attending university open days with him.  The only area of disappointment was the timeliness of extra tuition in English and maths as they were not as quickly provided as he would wish, particularly during the pandemic.  Now he was 16 he would like to lead reviews.


The Panel was interested that young people who were interested in speaking and advocating for themselves were given the opportunity when ready to lead meetings about their circumstances.  It welcomed the flexibility of moving from generic processes in such cases but noted that not all young people wished  ...  view the full minutes text for item 21.


Update and performance for Corporate Parenting Service pdf icon PDF 432 KB

Presentation from the Head of Corporate Parenting.

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The Panel received a presentation from the Head of Corporate Parenting including the performance scorecard, demographics and disproportionality, participation service update, Ofsted regulations and impact on placement sufficiency, and challenges and achievements.  Members were invited to the next CIC (Children In Care) awards.


With regard to the performance indicators, the Head of Corporate Parenting stated that Harrow had performed better than its statistical neighbours and England average on all twelve indicators.  In response to questions Members were informed that the targets had been previously set by the Panel and could be revised if wished.  It was noted that the targets for indicators 3 and 12 were accumulative. It was agreed that future such tables take the form of bar or pie charts.


Arising from discussion on the percentage of Children Looked After placed more than 20 miles away from home, the Divisional Director undertook to provide a breakdown as to the reason for the placements.  In addition it was agreed that future such reports would indicate the number of young people in each indicator as some contained small numbers.


The Panel discussed the demographics and a Member suggested that it would be more meaningful to make comparisons with other London Boroughs rather than all local authorities.  He also requested a keynote explanation for the number of 16+ CLA.


In response to a question regarding the costs of the Commissioning Alliance accreditation scheme, the Divisional Director stated that the cost impact was speculative.




(1)            the presentation be noted; and


(2)            future reports include graphs and further information as detailed above.


Virtual School Performance Update pdf icon PDF 540 KB

Presentation from the Head of Virtual School.

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The Panel received a presentation on the performance of the Harrow Virtual School for the 2021/22 academic year from the Headteacher for CLA (Children Looked After).


The Virtual Headteacher drew particular attention to:


·                 The Virtual School was particularly proud of the seven students beginning university;


·                 Post Covid, officers were again visiting schools;


·                 Those young people identified with Special Education Needs received Personal Education Plans which resulted in additional budget provision. PEP returns remained at 100%;


·                 The number of suspensions remained the same as the pre pandemic level.   This was on par with the English average.  The aim was to reduce the number of suspensions.  It was unusual for more girls to be suspended than boys.  A specialist project for girls would be put in place.


·                 75% of students from White backgrounds achieved one or more GCSE passes compared to 100% of students from Asian and Other Mixed Backgrounds.  Further support and specialist interventions for White/White British students were in place to ensure that this cohort makes proportional progress against their peers.  It should be noted that as the cohort sizes were small the situation could change the following year.


In response to a question regarding suspensions it was noted that there was an Inclusion Pathway plan which was a document that schools could tap into.  A Member stated that it would be useful to receive more detail on the reasons for suspension.  The Director of Children’s Services indicated that case studies would be provided in future reports.


The Panel congratulated the Virtual School team on the report.  It expressed congratulations to the seven students achieving university places and noted the interventions with regard to the suspension of girls and performance of white young people.




(1)            the presentation be noted; and


(2)            Future reports include case studies detailing reasons for suspensions.


Update and Performance on Health for Children Looked After pdf icon PDF 379 KB

Presentation from the Named Nurse for Children Looked After in Harrow.

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The Panel received a presentation from a representative (Named Nurse for Children Looked After in Harrow) of the Central and North West London NHS Foundation Trust.  The presentation outlined the key performance indicators for Harrow CLA, exception reporting, and further areas of assistance provided to the Council.


The Named Nurse drew particular attention to:


·                 The situation regarding dental checks would be monitored and support provided when contact was made by the social worker.  Checks would be made for out of area appointments;


·                 The reasons for in excess of 41 days between identification as CLA and completion of the Initial Health Assessment included hospitalisation, a large sibling group with one carer, and issues of consent.  If appropriate for out borough assessments, there would be liaison with the specialist nurse for that area;


·                 The Nurse made phone contact the day prior to the appointment as a reminder.  In the event the young person did not attend phone contact would be made to ascertain the reason and maybe alleviate worries in order to minimise the possibility of a second missed appointment;


·                 With regard to the case study, the statement that he had not been listened to had been followed up and the nurse had advocated for him.


The Panel thanked the officer for the comprehensive presentation.  It was suggested that texting potentially be used to communicate with the young people.  The case study indicated flexibility and willingness to go the extra mile such as the nurse attending both the assessment and LAC review.


RESOLVED:  That the presentation be noted.