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His Majesty’s Inspectorate of Probation rate Northamptonshire Youth Offending service ‘good’

13 October 2023

Youth Offending Service

The first inspection of the Youth Offending Service (YOS) since the inception of Northamptonshire Children’s Trust (NCT) and the establishment of the two unitary councils, North Northamptonshire (NNC) and West Northamptonshire (WNC) has found that the service is ‘good’.  The quality of resettlement policy and provision was also inspected, which was separately rated as ‘Outstanding’.

Inspectors found that ‘delivery of work with children was of a consistently high standard’ which in turn meant that there are ‘positive working relationships with the children’ and they ‘positively engaged with the YOS and could access appropriate services to support them.’

Children and young people were approached for comments as part of the inspection, and they said:

“My YOS worker is absolutely amazing. They have helped me through a lot, and I can’t thank them enough. Ever since they came into my life a lot of things have changed for the better.”

“My YOS worker not only taught me why what I was doing was wrong but also treated me with respect and supported me mentally as well, and is helping me to understand my emotions better and how to deal with things that have happened in my past,

Northamptonshire YOS sits within NCT who ‘provides clear direction for the service’ and works in partnership with North and West Northamptonshire Councils and partners such as health, police, education, community safety partnership, and other key stakeholders who all sit on the YOS Board.

The Board are committed to deliver the best outcomes for children, young people, and the community. In the report, inspectors ‘found an effective partnership’ and ‘Board members who take an active role in developing the work of the YOS’ they also saw ‘some excellent examples of board members advocating for the work of the YOS in their own organisations, with a clear focus upon improving outcomes for YOS children.’

We are extremely pleased that the fantastic work of our Youth Offending Service has been recognised in this inspection. We have an incredible team that work collaboratively with our partners to support young people, giving them every chance to succeed.

The positive results from our children’s survey are a testament to the quality of working relationships on which the service is built.

We welcome the recommendations that are in the report and will look at how to implement these so we can improve the service even further.
Julian Wooster, Chair of Northamptonshire Children’s Trust
We’re delighted that the Youth Offending Service has been rated ‘good’. Staff work extremely hard to achieve the best possible outcomes for the children they work with, and it’s wonderful to see their efforts recognised in this way.

The children supported by the service often have complex needs, and partners collaborate closely to provide a wide range of both mainstream and specialist services to address these in order to intervene early and successfully help these young people turn their lives around.

The team are always looking for ways to improve the support they provide, and they are now considering how they can implement the recommendations in the report to help achieve even better outcomes for the young people they work with. I’m sure that continual drive to improve will be reflected in future inspections.
Cllr Scott Edwards, North Northamptonshire's Executive member for Children, Families, Education and Skills
I am so pleased that the youth offending service has been rated ‘good’. It recognises the hard work of dedicated staff who go above and beyond to ensure the best outcomes for the children they serve.

The team remains ever committed to delivering better outcomes for the young people they work with and are now looking at how they can put in place the report’s recommendations.

 I would like to thank all of the staff involved and I am certain their commitment to achieving the best outcomes will be reflected in future inspections.
Cllr Fiona Baker, West Northamptonshire's Cabinet Member for Children, Families and Education
Northamptonshire Youth Offending Service offers children under their supervision every chance to succeed.

We were impressed with their approach to providing services for each child to access specialist support services, such as for substance misuse, speech, language, and communication and to meet their educational needs. The local community should know that the service is making every effort to stop children committing offences and provide opportunities towards a brighter future.
Interim Chief Inspector of Probation Sue McAllister

The full inspection report is available online. 

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