Guidance on Part 6 of the Regulations – Monitoring and Reviewing Children’s Homes

When establishing the home, the registered person must ensure that it is suitably located so that children are effectively safeguarded and can access services to meet needs identified in their relevant plans (see regulations 12(2)(c)). Under regulation 46,  the registered person should review the appropriateness and suitability of the location and premises of the home at least once a year. The review should include the identification of any risks and opportunities presented by the home’s location and strategies for managing these. Providers should refer to the non-statutory advice about the location assessment process: Children's homes regulation amendments 2014: Advice  for children's homes providers on new duties under regulations that came in to effect in January and April 2014.

Regulation 45 sets out requirements for the registered person to have a system in place which allows them to monitor the matters set out in the regulation at least once every six months; also see regulation 13(2)(h) (the leadership and management standard). The registered person should undertake a review that focuses on the quality of the care provided by the home, the experiences of children living there and the impact the care is having on outcomes and improvements for the children. Reviews should be underpinned by the Quality Standards as described in regulations 5 to 14.

The processes the registered person puts in place to enable such a review to take place, should allow for a report to be generated at least once every six months. The generated report should be sent to Ofsted and the placing local authority of all children in the home who are looked-after children.

The registered person is responsible for deciding what each review should focus on, based on the specific circumstances of the home at that particular time and any areas of high risk to the children that the home is designed to care for, such as missing or exploitation. They will also consider what information or data recorded in the home will form part of the evidence base for their analysis and conclusions. There is no expectation that the registered person will review the home against every part of the Quality Standards every six months – registered persons should use their professional  judgement to decide which factors to focus on. The review should enable the registered person to identify areas of strength and possible weakness in the home’s care, which will be captured in the written report. The report should clearly identify any actions required for the next 6 months of delivery within the home and how those actions will be addressed. The whole review process and the resulting report should be used as a tool for continuous improvement in the home.

Any individual appointed to carry out visits to the home as an independent person must make a rigorous and impartial assessment of the home’s arrangements for safeguarding and promoting the welfare of the children in the home’s care.

Any individual appointed to carry out visits to the home as an independent person must make a rigorous and impartial assessment of the home’s arrangements for safeguarding and promoting the welfare of the children in the home’s care.

Where the independent person is an employee of those carrying on the children’s home, they must be employed solely for the purpose of quality assurance within the home(s).

The registered provider should also ensure that the independent person they appoint has the skills and understanding necessary to:

  • Relate to children in a home’s care;
  • Assess all relevant information; and
  • Form an impartial judgement about the quality of the home’s care.

The skills, experience and professional background of the independent person, for example in undertaking work of a similar nature, will also be a relevant factor in assessing their ability to reach a rigorous and impartial judgment.

Last Updated: February 9, 2022

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