On 13 July 2011, the Department for Education published the Government’s response to Professor Munro’s review of child protection. They agreed with all 15 recommendations.

The Government will take forward further detailed work with key partners. It will set up a co-produced work programme between the Department for Education, the DH, NHS bodies, local authorities, professional bodies and practitioners to ensure continued improvement of safeguarding arrangements in health reform. This will include building on the DH’s work to date on the practical implications of NHS reform for safeguarding children.

NHS and local authority chief executives will wish to consider the implications of the Government response and the proposed further partnership working across sectors.

Other key headlines from the Government are that they will:

  • oversee a radical reduction in the amount of regulation through the revision of the statutory framework to place greater emphasis on direct work with children, young people and families;
  • amend statutory guidance, by December 2011, to remove prescribed timescales and the distinction between core and initial assessments;
  • support and work with the Social Work Reform Board, the College of Social Work and the Association of Directors of Children’s Services to develop the knowledge and skills of the profession;
  • implement a new inspection framework that has at its heart the experiences of children and young people;
  • ensure greater transparency and co-ordination of local arrangements to deliver an early help offer to children, young people and families;
  • create a chief social worker to advise them on social work practice and the effectiveness of the help being given to children and young people; and
  • carefully plan the transition to enable systems review methodology to be used by Local Safeguarding Children’s Boards when serious case reviews are undertaken.