The Impact of Safeguarding Children Peer Reviews

Claire Easton, Kerry Martin, Fiona Walker

31 May 2012

Executive Summary

The Local Government Association (LGA) and Children’s Improvement Board (CIB) commissioned NFER to carry out an evaluation of the Safeguarding Children Peer Reviews. The evaluation built on a previous study carried out by NFER which explored the Safeguarding Children Peer Review process (Martin and Jeffes, 2011). Given the increase in the number of LAs experiencing difficulties and/or in intervention and requesting a peer review, the CIB and the LGA wished to focus this new study on exploring the impact of the peer review process on authorities with a Notice to Improve. To achieve this, NFER undertook interviews with 25 staff including LA officers, councillors and staff from partner organisations across five LAs who were at different stages of intervention.

Key Findings

  • The safeguarding peer reviews met the global aims and objectives of the five local authorities participating in this study, providing the necessary external scrutiny they required.
  • Peer reviews provided staff with the necessary validation and reassurance to support their improvement journey.
  • The peer review process is seen as a valuable mechanism for bringing partners together and helping to facilitate future partnership working.
  • The safeguarding peer review methodology works well and can be tailored sufficiently to the needs of a LA in intervention.

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