Ofsted “failed to detect abuse” in Rotherham

From the BBC    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-south-yorkshire-31914195

Government inspectors failed to detect child sexual exploitation in Rotherham because they trusted council staff, a report by MPs has said.

The Communities and Local Government Committee said Ofsted inspections had been “ineffective”.

The committee, examining how the abuse of more than 1,400 children in Rotherham over a 16-year period went undetected, called for all English local authorities to be re-inspected.

Ofsted said it welcomed the report.

Labour MP Clive Betts, chair of the committee, said: “The perpetrators bear ultimate responsibility for the sexual exploitation of children in Rotherham but the ineffectiveness of Ofsted’s inspections contributed to a failure to expose the extent of the problem and to detect Rotherham Council’s ongoing and tragic inability to combat it on the ground.”

He added the “shortcomings” of inspection arrangements left serious concerns child sexual exploitation might have been missed in other areas.

‘Jealousy and incompetence’

The report said inquiries by Ofsted had put too much trust in what staff said rather than checking policies had been implemented and were working.

Rotherham abuse

1,400 children were abused, 1997-2013

  • 1/3 of victims were already known to social services
  • 157 reports concerning child sexual exploitation made to police in 2013
  • 10 prosecutions were made between 2013 and April 2014
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