A joint inspection of services in the Scottish Borders partnership has found key strengths that are having a significant and positive impact on the lives of children and young people. Inspectors also noted some areas which could further improve.

The report notes that children, young people and families benefited from supportive and trusting relationships with staff across services.

The recognition of - and initial response to - risks and concerns to children was identified as a strength. Staff took timely and appropriate action to keep children safe.

Well-established collaborative working across services ensured children and young people benefited from timely responses to the identification of risks.

The inspection found that the partnership provided a range of supports to help children and young people recover from abuse, neglect and trauma. However, some of these services were not consistently available when children and young people needed them.

Children, young people, parents and carers were supported to meaningfully contribute to decisions about their lives by compassionate staff. However, the quality of chronologies and children’s plans was variable.

The partnership was at an early stage of ensuring that the voice of children and families routinely and meaningfully influenced service planning and improvement.

The report also noted that the partnership’s approach to improvement and change was not supported by a shared and systematic approach to quality assurance and self-evaluation.

Jackie Irvine, Chief Executive of the Care Inspectorate, said: “The Care inspectorate and its scrutiny partners are pleased to report on the positive impact of services for children and young people at risk of harm in the Scottish Borders. We are confident that the partnership have the capacity to make changes to service delivery in the areas that require improvement.

“We have asked Scottish Borders community planning partners for evidence that these areas are included in appropriate improvement plans. Actions should clearly detail how the partnership will make and prioritise improvements in the key areas identified. The Care Inspectorate will offer support for improvement and monitor progress through our linking arrangements.”

The full report can be read here.