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Framework, evaluation criteria and inspector guidance for the inspections of local authority children's services

This document sets out the framework and guidance for inspecting local authority services for children in need of help and protection, children in care and care leavers.

These inspections focus on the effectiveness of local authority services and arrangements:

  • to help and protect children
  • the experiences and progress of children in care wherever they live, including those children who return home
  • the arrangements for permanence for children who are looked after, including adoption
  • the experiences and progress of care leavers.

In addition, we evaluate the effectiveness of leaders and managers and the impact they have on the lives of children and young people and the quality of professional practice.

We first published this framework in November 2017. We published this version of the framework in December 2018. There is a summary of the changes we have made at the end of this document.