Children’s Homes Regulations & Quality Standards
Following on from our previous post on the Quality Standards, what follows are the nine quality standards and a brief summary statement for each one. These are laid out in the publication Guide to the children’s homes regulations including the quality standards.
To that end, the standards for Children’s Homes focus on nine preordained criteria;
- The quality and purpose of care standard: The provision of personalised, well-intentioned care, with a focus on respect and accessibility (within the home and community).
- The children’s wishes and feelings standard: Children should be emotionally engaged with by staff, and their wishes and feelings taken into consideration.
- The education standard: Children must be making measurable progress in attaining their individual academic potential.
- The enjoyment and achievement standard: Children must be encouraged and enabled to take part in their creative, intellectual, physical and social interests and skills.
- The health and well-being standard: Children’s health needs must be adequately met by available services, and the children should also be encouraged to lead a healthy lifestyle.
- The positive relationships standard: Children should be able to develop relationships based on mutual respect and trust, an understanding regarding acceptable behaviour, and positive responses to other children and adults.
- The protection of children standard: Children must be actively protected from all harm, and encouraged to learn to protect themselves as well. Each child’s personal risk factors should be thoroughly assessed.
- The leadership and management standard: Each home should have a “vision” and staff should demonstrate inspired leadership that encourages children to achieve, along with adequate individual coaching.
- The care planning standard: Care should be planned thoughtfully in a way that ensures each child’s placement is adequate for his or her individual needs, and should include a customised transition plan.
About the Quality Standards –
The Quality Standards set out in regulations the outcomes that children must be supported to achieve while living in children’s homes. Each standard has an aspirational, child-focused outcome statement, followed by a clear set of underpinning, measurable requirements that homes must meet to achieve the standard.
Ofsted Inspection Framework –
Accompanying the Regulations and Quality Standards will be the Ofsted Inspection Framework which isn’t easily cross-referenced or matched to the Regulations and Quality Standards.
It is easy to become confused by the various documents that you must take account of and what they actually mean. We find it helpful to define them as follows;
The Children’s Homes Regulation 2015 – What providers must lawfully adhere to.
The Quality Standards – The elements that make up what is required to comply with the Children’s Homes Regulations 2015 and the required outcomes applying to each regulation.
The Ofsted Inspection Framework – The judgement framework against which levels of compliance and quality of outcomes will be measured.
Obviously, the nine standards represent a complicated interaction of factors, some of which seem highly subjective at first glance (such as feelings and wishes, and evaluations of relationship quality). It is extremely difficult to plan for an inspection that involves subjective, fluctuating emotional elements, but through the use of a carefully-staged mock-inspection, you and your household can get prepared for Ofsted’s official one.