Author: The Rt. Hon. the Lord Laming (Chair)
When the state takes over the parenting of someone else’s child, it has both a legal and moral responsibility to be a good parent. Quite often this will require determined effort to remedy the inadequacies or serious failure of the earlier parenting experienced by the young person. These failures, for whatever reason they arise, can result in profound deficiencies, be they in education, social skills or personal development. Remedial work depends not only on the skills but also the commitment, ambition and determination of the staff, the carers and possibly the members of the wider family. This report is aimed at encouraging good practice and ensuring that sound quality standards become the everyday experience for each and every child who has to depend upon the state for their safety, their proper development and their confidence in their future. Although the task demands much of everyone involved with each young person it is, nevertheless, both essential and potentially most rewarding for both the young person and the state. Drift is the enemy of the good in the life of a young person. Failure is costly both in personal terms and for the state. This report demonstrates just what can be achieved, given a clear vision, a commitment to timely joint working across the key agencies and a belief in the unique value of each child. The good news is that it is being done in some areas. The least we can do is have this ambition for each child in our care.