Claims social workers asked government to take over Wakefield Council's children's services

A commissioner is currently inspecting children's servicesA commissioner is currently inspecting children's services
A commissioner is currently inspecting children's services
"Rumours" that social workers have asked the government to take Wakefield's children's services out of council hands have been repeated in public

.Councillor Kevin Swift told a meeting he'd heard of staff asking the commissioner who is inspecting the service to ensure the Department of Education (DofE) "intervenes".

A report later this month by the commissioner will decide the future of children's services, following Wakefield Council's attempts to improve its inadequate Ofsted rating.

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Should the local authority be deemed unfit to run it, the government could take over the service themselves for a period of time, or demand that it be privatised.

Coun Kevin SwiftCoun Kevin Swift
Coun Kevin Swift

Some level of DofE involvement in the running of the department is expected, regardless of what the commissioner decides.

Speaking at a children and young people scrutiny committee meeting, Wakefield West representative Coun Swift said: "I confess this is the rumour mill doing the rounds about town, but is it true what I've heard about staff asking the commissioner to do a major intervention and take the service off the council?"

Speaking after the meeting, Ms Wagner said that conversations between individuals and the commissioner were private.

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In a statement she said: "As part of the independent commissioner review an offer was made to all staff and partners to provide any comments or concerns direct to the commissioner.

"Any submissions our staff and partners have made to the commissioner are confidential between them and the commissioner and they have not been shared with the authority.

"The commissioner will report his findings to the (Department of Education) ministers by November 21 and we anticipate his report will be made public shortly after."