Audit, Inspection and Safety

Government commissioner allows Wakefield Council to retain full control of services

14.12.18: Almost four months after Ofsted inspectors identified “serious and widespread failures” across Wakefield’s children’s services, it has today been announced that the council will be able to retain full control of its portf...

Council fined thousands after pleading guilty to ‘catastrophic’ disease outbreak

07.12.18: Tendring District Council has been fined £27,000 after the local authority pleaded guilty to a health and safety breach when an outbreak of Legionnaires disease left a man fighting for his life. The district council was fined by Colch...

High Court slams Herefordshire council for ‘woeful’ children’s care after failing children ‘on a serious and serial basis’

07.12.18: Herefordshire council has apologised for failing children in two separate cases through its “woeful” children’s services after a High Court judge said he was “appalled” by errors made by the authority’s social...

Brexit ‘chaos’ has held back the north as government has ‘deprioritised’ the Northern Powerhouse

05.12.18: The Northern Powerhouse has been “deprioritised” by government, with Brexit “chaos” preventing the north of England from realising its full potential, a think tank has warned. The Institute of Public Policy Research...

‘Don’t throw out the rule book’ in the face of budget pressures warns ombudsman

04.12.18: The Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman (LGSCO) has challenged councils not to “throw out the rule book” as they redesign their services in the face of widespread budget cuts and service pressures. The new report from the...

Councils to have ‘full backing’ as government announces ban on Grenfell-style cladding

30.11.18: The government has banned combustible materials such as those used on Grenfell Tower on new high-rise homes and buildings and given councils the power to strip unsafe cladding from residential buildings. James Brokenshire said local authori...

New children’s services commissioner takes over at Northamptonshire

30.11.18: The government has appointed a children’s services commissioner for Northamptonshire and issued a statutory direction to the county council requiring immediate improvement. The direction follows a damning report from Ofsted which said...

Rotherham abuse victim reveals council offered convicted sex offender access to her child

28.11.18: Rotherham Council has come under fierce criticism after a convicted sex offender was offered access to the child of one of the victims of the town’s sexual exploitation scandal. Arshid Hussain was jailed for 35 years in 2016 after he...

Ombudsman ‘increasingly concerned’ over councils’ systematic problems with social care

28.11.18: The ombudsman for local government and social care has said it is becoming “increasingly concerned” with how some councils are handling increasing adult social care issues after a review found issues with systems, policies and proced...

Councils could lose £16bn from LOBO loans as McDonnell calls for government investigation

27.11.18: Controversial LOBO loans could cost councils as much as £16bn, according to new research, which has prompted the shadow chancellor John McDonnell to call for a government investigation into the high-interest and risky loans. Analysis...

Ofsted gives damning report on Northants’ children’s services amidst financial uncertainty

13.11.18: Ofsted has written to Northamptonshire County Council after an inspection found that its children’s services had declined “significantly” in the last two years “against a backdrop of recent financial uncertainty.” ...

Oxfordshire council spends £1.7m on audit for work carried out by Carillion

09.11.18: Oxfordshire County Council has spent £1.7m on an audit report on the work carried out by Carillion, finding “a range of issues” and “major elements unsuitably executed.” The report shows that the county council...

Ofsted finds ‘inadequate’ Bradford children’s services have ‘rapidly deteriorated’

30.10.18: Bradford council’s children services have been rated ‘inadequate’ after leaving children “at serious risk of harm,” Ofsted has found. Its report found that services for children in Bradford had “rapidly d...

Council-run children’s home for most vulnerable found to have 'serious and widespread failures'

25.10.18: A children’s home run by Suffolk County Council was found to have “serious and widespread failures,” meaning vulnerable children were not protected, an Ofsted report has found. An inspection on the children’s home &n...

Former Westminster council pensions boss found guilty of £1m fraud

16.10.18: A former employee of Westminster City Council has been found guilty of stealing nearly £1m from the council pension fund. Ian Woodall, the former interim head of pensions and investments at the council, was yesterday convicted of one...

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Council to spend £4m investigating senior officers who gave themselves 20% wage rise during pay freeze

14/12/2018Council to spend £4m investigating senior officers who gave themselves 20% wage rise during pay freeze

A council has agreed to allocate nearly an extra £250,000 to an investigation looking into alleged pay rises given to senior officers. ... more >
Government commissioner allows Wakefield Council to retain full control of services

14/12/2018Government commissioner allows Wakefield Council to retain full control of services

Almost four months after Ofsted inspectors identified “serious and widespread failures” across Wakefield’s children’s ser... more >
Fife Council scraps controversial P1 assessments despite harsh government opposition

14/12/2018Fife Council scraps controversial P1 assessments despite harsh government opposition

Fife Council has announced that it will be scrapping the controversial standardised P1 assessments at the end of the current academic year. ... more >

editor's comment

25/10/2017Take a moment to celebrate

Devolution, restructuring and widespread service reform: from a journalist’s perspective, it’s never been a more exciting time to report on the public sector. That’s why I could not be more thrilled to be taking over the reins at PSE at this key juncture. There could not be a feature that more perfectly encapsulates this... read more >

last word

The importance of openness after Grenfell

The importance of openness after Grenfell

Following the recent Grenfell Tower tragedy, Lord Porter, chairman of the LGA, argues that if the public are going to have faith in the safety testing process then everything must be out in the o... more > more last word articles >
Local government finance settlement: short-term needs met with 2.4% boost

13/12/2018Local government finance settlement: short-term needs met with 2.4% boost

The annual local government finance settlement shows that the government has recognised short-term pressures facing local government — but it is yet to solve medium to long-term financial d... more >
Local government finance settlement delayed by Brexit

05/12/2018Local government finance settlement delayed by Brexit

The announcement of the local government funding settlement has been delayed as Parliament looks to grapple with Brexit. In a statement released this afternoon, communities secretary Ja... more >

the raven's daily blog

Blog: 5 minutes with Gary Wallis-Clarke, member of the Northern Powerhouse Education and Skills Group

12/12/2018Blog: 5 minutes with Gary Wallis-Clarke, member of the Northern Powerhouse Education and Skills Group

Ahead of the upcoming networking extravaganza EvoNorth, we caught up with Gary Wallis-Clarke, a member of the Northern Powerhouse Education and Skills group, executive headteacher at West Jesmond Primary school, and its national leader of education. In our interview, Gary reveals what the Northern Powerhouse means to him and explains... more >
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The digital buying community is live

12/11/2018The digital buying community is live

Many of the requirements from buyers posted on the Digital Marketplace were either non-compliant or poorly worded, which resulted in challenges f... more >
A force to be reckoned with

12/11/2018A force to be reckoned with

The South Bank plan, which refers to a number of investments and proposed activities across a massive plot of land south of the River Aire, is on... more >
Less for less: the risk of 'core offers'

12/11/2018Less for less: the risk of 'core offers'

As councils across England struggle with their finances in the face of massive cuts from central government, Simon Edwards, director of the Count... more >
A two-speed England

05/11/2018A two-speed England

Central government needs to change its approach to local transport planning and investment, including by consolidating funding and maximising dev... more >

interviews

New Dorset Councils CEO on the creation of a new unitary: ‘This is going to be the right decision for Dorset’

05/11/2018New Dorset Councils CEO on the creation of a new unitary: ‘This is going to be the right decision for Dorset’

The new chief executive of one of the new unitary authorities in Dorset has outlined his approach to culture and work with employees, arguing tha... more >
Keeping the momentum of the Northern Powerhouse

15/10/2018Keeping the momentum of the Northern Powerhouse

On 6 September, the biggest decision-makers of the north joined forces to celebrate and debate how to drive innovation and improvement through th... more >
Cllr Cutts on dealing with children’s services pressures: ‘I can’t magic money out of the air’

26/09/2018Cllr Cutts on dealing with children’s services pressures: ‘I can’t magic money out of the air’

The leader of Nottinghamshire County Council has outlined her priorities for dealing with soaring demand of children’s services and social ... more >
Nottinghamshire considers unitary shake-up proposals in a bid to balance books

05/09/2018Nottinghamshire considers unitary shake-up proposals in a bid to balance books

Nottinghamshire County Council is considering proposals to scrap its current two-tier structure for a new unitary system in order to save on... more >

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