We have published our joint inspection report on the protection of children and young people in the South Ayrshire council area.

The inspection included services provided by health agencies, the police, the local authority and Scottish Children’s Reporter Administration, as well as those provided by voluntary and independent organisations.  Joint inspection reports give an evaluation of the effectiveness of services using a published quality indicator framework focusing on 6 key areas:

  1. how well children and young people are listened to, understood and respected;
  2. how children and young people benefit from strategies to minimize harm;
  3. how children and young people are helped by the actions taken in immediate response to concerns;
  4. how well children’s and young people’s needs are met;
  5. service improvements through self-evaluation; and
  6. improvements in performance.

Services in the South Ayrshire Council area were given 4 evaluations of very good and 2 evaluations of good.

Inspectors found the following key strengths in how well children were protected and their needs met in the South Ayrshire Council area.

  • Highly flexible support provided to meet children and families’ needs at an early stage.
  • Staff sharing responsibility and working very well together to meet children’s needs and improve their future outcomes.
  • Very effective work by staff to gain children and families’ trust and confidence.
  • Clear leadership and direction which is motivating staff to make and sustain improvements.

Inspectors agreed with services in the council area the following points for improvement.

  • Improve front-line police officers’ recognition of risks to children, ensuring information is shared promptly to allow risks and needs to be fully assessed.
  • Continue to strengthen approaches to joint self-evaluation and ensure that these are informed by children and families’ views about the impact of the services they receive.

    We are confident that the services will be able to make the necessary improvements in light of the inspection findings.  As a result, we will make no more visits in connection with this inspection.  Our link inspector will maintain contact with services to support improvements.