Children in Care, Adoption and Care Leavers

Numbers of children in care

  • At year end (31st March) 2016-17 Derby had 448 children in care; this was exactly the same as the previous year end. 
  • The highest year end reported figure was 31st March 1998, where Derby had 495 children in care.

Rates per 10,000 under 18 population

  • At year end 2016-17 Derby had 75.0 children in care per 10,000 people aged under 18.
  • Derby’s rate (75.0) was below the comparator authority average of 78.7 per 10,000, but above the national average of 62.0. Sheffield and Medway are the only comparator authorities that have a rate lower than the national average of 60.0 per 10,000, with a rate of 50.0 and 61.0 respectively.
  • The comparator authority average has increased for the first time in four years. 
  • The national average has risen from 60.0 per 10,000 seen over the past four years up to 62.0 per 10,000 in 2016-17.

Percentage of children in care who were adopted

  • Between 2015-16 and 2016-17, the percentage of children looked after in Derby that were adopted during the year has increased from 15.0% (2015-16) to 23.0% (2016-17). Derby’s 2016-17 figure of 23.0% is higher than the national average (14.0%) and the comparator average (19.3%) 
  • For 2016-17, Derby performed well in our comparator group matching with Bolton who had a similar figure of 23.0% 
  • When comparing the 3 year rolling average for 2014-16, Derby has a figure of 23.3%. This is the third highest figure within the whole comparator group, with only Bolton (26.7%) and Leeds (23.7%) having higher rolling average percentages for the same time period.

Placement types and providers

  • At the end of 2016-17, 73% of Derby’s children in care were in foster placements. This is slightly lower than both the national (74%) and comparator (75%) percentages.
  • Derby had 4% of looked after children placed for adoption. This is lower than the comparator (5%) but higher than the national (3%) percentage.
  • Both the national and comparator percentages for using LA own provision are 54%. Derby has the lowest percentage of own provision (35%) within our comparator authority group. 
  • Private provision usage in Derby is 48%. This is higher than both the national and comparator percentages (33%).

Children in Care placed 20 miles or more away from the originating address

  • Of the 448 new placements for children looked after by Derby during 2016-17, 70% were placed within 20 miles of their home address. This is below both the national average (74%) and the comparator authorities’ average (80%).
  • Derby (70%) has the second lowest percentage known to have a distance between home and placement of 20 miles or less of all of the comparator authorities with only Peterborough (67%) having a lower percentage. The comparator authority with the highest percentage is Bolton (93%), with Dudley (86%) having the second highest percentage.
  • Derby had 28% of their children in care new placements for 2016-17 placed over 20 miles from the home address. This is above both the national (14%) and comparator (16%) average percentages. In contrast, Bolton had just 4% of their children in care new placements, placed over 20 miles from home.

Children in Care placed out of the LA boundary and other LA children placed in Derby

  • As at the end of 2016-17, Derby had 37% of its looked after children placed within the LA boundary and within 20 miles of their home address. This compares to a national figure of 52%, and a comparator authority average percentage of 54%, for this statistic.
  • The published statistics also imply that Derby has 61% of its total looked after children (as at end 2016-17) placed outside of the LA boundary, compared to 36% nationally and a comparator authorities’ average percentage of 42%. 
  • For Derby, as at end 2016-17, the percentage of all looked after children placed within the local authority boundary who were looked after by Derby was 68%. This compares to a national average percentage of 61% of looked after children within a local authority being ‘internal’ to that local authority, and a comparator authorities’ average percentage of 63%.
  • As at the end of 2016-17, Derby was responsible for 448 children in care in total, but only had 256 children in care placed within its local authority boundary. This latter figure includes those for whom a local authority other than Derby was responsible.

Care Leavers – suitable accommodation and activity when aged 19, 20 and 21 years old

  • For the year ending 31st March 2017, Derby had 53% of its care leavers aged 19, 20 or 21 as at 31st March in education, employment or training. This is above both the comparator authorities' average (49%), and the national average (50%).
  • For the same year, Derby had 87% of its care leavers aged 19, 20 or 21 in suitable accommodation. This compares to 86% for the comparator authorities’ average percentage and a national figure of 84%.

Health Outcomes

  • The percentage of Derby's children in care who had their teeth checked by a dentist increased from 80.0% for 2015-16 up to 84.1% in 2016-17. Nationally there was a decrease from 84.1% in 2015-16 to 83.4%. The comparator authority average remained at 89.5% for the second year running.
  • The percentage of Derby’s children in care who had an annual health assessment increased from 87.5% in 2015-16 to 91.2%. In contrast, the national percentage decreased slightly, from 90.0% in 2015-16 to 89.4% in 2016-17.
  • Derby's completion rate of immunisations has decreased from 100% (2015-16) to 97.7% (2016-17) even with the deterioration in performance, Derby remains above the comparator authorities’ average percentage of 91.0% and a national average of 84.4%.
  • For 2016-17, in Derby, 81.6% of children in care who had been in care for at least 12 months, and were aged four or under as at 31st March 2016, had an up to date development assessment. This is slightly lower than the percentage for 2015-16 for Derby (83.3%). The 2016-17 percentage for Derby is very similar to the 2016-17 national percentage (82.5%), but is well below the equivalent comparator authorities’ average percentage (92.5%).

Strength and Difficulties Questionnaires (SDQ’s)

  • For 2016-17, Derby has the highest average SDQ score (16.3) than any of its comparator authorities. This score is higher than both the national score (14.1) and the comparator authorities’ average score (14.5).
  • Derby’s completion percentage has increased from 70% in 2015-16 to 79.1% in 2016-17. The latter percentage compares to 75.8% nationally and a comparator authorities’ average percentage of 79.8%.
  • In 2016-17, Derby's percentage of children for whom an SDQ score has been submitted with a score of 17 or over is significantly higher than the national average (51.1% compared to 38.1%).

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