Research and analysis

Independent reviewing officers: taking up the challenge?

Ofsted survey report evaluating the effectiveness of independent reviewing officers in discharging their responsibilities towards looked after children.

Documents

Independent reviewing officers taking up the challenge

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Independent reviewing officers taking up the challenge

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Independent reviewing officers taking up the challenge: report summary

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Independent reviewing officers taking up the challenge: report summary

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Independent reviewing officers taking up the challenge: summary report for children and young people

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Independent reviewing officers taking up the challenge: summary report for children and young people

This file may not be suitable for users of assistive technology. Request an accessible format.

If you use assistive technology (eg a screen reader) and need a version of this document in a more accessible format, please email enquiries@ofsted.gov.uk. Please tell us what format you need. It will help us if you say what assistive technology you use.

Detail

This Ofsted survey report evaluates the effectiveness of independent reviewing officers in discharging their responsibilities towards looked after children. Inspectors visited a sample of 10 local authority areas. The report draws on evidence from 111 cases as well as the views of children and young people, carers, and professionals from the local authorities and from partner agencies.

A local authority that fails in its duties to a looked after child can be challenged under the Human Rights Act 1998, most likely under article 8 of the European Convention on Human Rights relating to family life. Some children, who do not have an adult who can act on their behalf may not be able to challenge the local authority on this.

The government has, therefore, made it a legal requirement for an independent reviewing officer to be appointed, who can participate in case reviews, monitor the local authority’s performance in respect of reviews, and consider whether it would be appropriate to refer cases to the Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service (Cafcass).