Cllr Paul Hodgkinson, Group Leader of the Liberal Democrats on Gloucestershire County Council, said in response to Ofsted’s announcement:

‘It’s a real relief to see that Gloucestershire’s Children’s Services are no longer in special measures.  Primarily, of course, this is good news for the children in our care, but also for our staff who have worked so hard to improve the service.

‘However, it’s important that the Conservative administration doesn’t celebrate too much.  We must not forget that the decline of the County’s children’s services was a political decision taken by this administration.  When funding was cut for children’s and youth services from 2010, the decline in the care we gave to our most vulnerable children was inevitable.  Significantly increasing the budget in the years since going into special measures – back to where we ought to have been in the first place – has brought about this success; but for more than a decade our county’s vulnerable children were being failed.  

‘Now we’ve been released from special measures it is critical that the Council does not rest on its laurels.  Moving from “Inadequate” to “Requires Improvement” still shows that we are not delivering a good service for children in our care.  Our county’s vulnerable children deserve only the best care, and we must therefore see a plan to turn Gloucestershire County Council into an exemplar authority.’

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