I’ve got a piece over on the New Statesman blog:
There are wider issues untouched by Ed Balls’s short, sharp investigation.
For example – Sharon Shoesmith was in charge of education as well as child protection – following the recommendations of Lord Laming turned into legislation by the 2004 Children’s Act. It seemed a good and obvious idea at the time – stopping the gap through which children might fall if teachers didn’t communicate worries with social services. But it clearly didn’t work. Is this the failing just of staff in Haringey, or is there a deeper problem with the manner – or perhaps even concept – of merging the two? It’s not fashionable for politicians to say, “I don’t know”, but on this one I don’t. My mind is open – but I am sure we need to consider the issue carefully.
And what about inspections? Just before Victoria Climbie’s death outside inspectors gave Haringey a glowing report. Just as this time Haringey got a glowing report just before all the truth over Baby P’s death came tumbling out. Huge resources go in to inspections. Are they really being well used?
You can read the full piece here.