New outstanding children’s homes get the nod
Senior councillors in Leeds have agreed to replace two outdated children’s homes with three smaller homes, which will better meet the needs of children in care.
At a meeting of Leeds City Council’s executive board earlier this week, members agreed proposals to close Inglewood Home in Otley and Wood Lane in Headingley, and invest the money generated from selling these properties into developing more suitable children’s residential care.
The two homes would be replaced by the opening of three new smaller homes in Leeds which would be located in areas where they can better blend with the communities in which they would be located.
In order to reflect the changing needs of children who are looked after by the council and to develop and enhance the provision, a review of residential care for children and young people has been completed. The review involved consultation with children living in children’s homes, care leavers, families, social workers, other professionals and partner agencies.
As a result of the review and changes in the age and profile of looked after children a strategy has been developed to create outstanding children’s homes. These would be small homes, situated in local communities, child-centred and outcome-focused, appropriately resourced and in good condition. The strategy intends to extend the quality, flexibility and range of children’s homes in Leeds, including the development of homes providing specialist care, to improve the outcomes for the children placed there and to reduce the dependence on expensive external placements.
Councillor Judith Blake, executive member responsible for children’s services said:
“A key priority for us as a child friendly city is to ensure that children can be brought up safely with their birth parents or within their wider extended family network if at all possible. Where this is not possible then it is our responsibility to ensure we have an appropriate range of placements to meet the needs of children and young people in our care.
“By creating these new residential homes we can ensure more young people will be able to stay in Leeds and receive the outstanding care they deserve.”
For media enquiries, please contact:
Emma Whittell, Leeds City Council press office, on (0113) 2474713