The Government is keen to do all it can to ensure that children are able to grow up in loving, safe and stable families where they can flourish. This was outlined by the Prime Minister only a few weeks ago who spoke of the importance of families and the need for families to be surrounded by safe care networks. Sadly we know that families are not always the safest places for children to be. This is why it is vital that we have a robust child protection system and a strong children’s social care sector. As high profile cases have shown, children in the care sector are not always given a safe environment to grow up in and reform is needed going forward.
To that end, I very much welcomed the Government’s review into social care that focused on making the biggest difference to vulnerable children across the country. In this morning’s statement, I was keen to press the Secretary of State on the details of the Government’s reforms and the efficiency of Government spending. While Sure Start was effective, a great deal of money was squandered and ultimately did not impact the lives of children who needed it most. I am hopeful that the Government’s What Works centres will provide greater accountability and transparency so that we know that taxpayer money is going towards making a transformational difference in the lives of children.
In her response, the Secretary of State for Education was quick to assure me that the proposed reforms go beyond the physical centres and will build upon the available evidence to ensure that children are at the forefront of future work.