Children in Care, Adoption and Care Leavers

Numbers of children in care

  • At year end (31st March) 2015-16 Derby had 450 children in care; this was a decrease of 4.3% from the figure of 470 at the end of the previous year.
  • 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 2015-16 Derby had 76.0 children in care per 10,000 people aged under 18.
  • Derby’s rate (76.0) was below the comparator authority average of 77.0 per 10,000, but above the national average of 60.0. Sheffield is the only comparator authority that has a rate lower than the national average of 60.0 per 10,000, with a rate of 46.0.
  • The comparator authority average has decreased for each of the past three years.

Percentage of children in care who were adopted

  • Between 2014-15 and 2015-16, the percentage of children looked after in Derby that were adopted during the year has decreased from 32.0% (2014-15) to 15.0% (2015-16). For 2015-16, the percentage for Derby is exactly equal to the national percentage (15.0%).
  • For 2015-16, only two authorities within the comparator group had lower percentages than Derby. These were Medway (11.0%) and Telford & Wrekin (14.0%), respectively.
  • When comparing the 3 year rolling average for 2014-16, Derby has a figure of 25.3%. This is the third highest figure within the whole comparator group, with only Bolton (30.7%) and Leeds (25.7%) having higher rolling average percentages for the same time period.

Placement types and providers

  • At the end of 2015-16, 68% of Derby’s children in care were in foster placements. This is lower than both the national (74%) and comparator (75%) percentages.
  • Derby had 8% of looked after children placed for adoption. This is higher than both the comparator (6%) and national (4%) percentages.
  • Both the national and comparator percentages for using LA own provision are 55%. Derby has a lower percentage of own provision (42%). Amongst the comparator authorities, only Coventry has a lower percentage (34%).
  • Private provision usage in Derby is 38%. This is higher than both the national and comparator percentages (33% and 32%, respectively).

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

  • Of the 445 new placements for children looked after by Derby during 2015-16, 68% were placed within 20 miles of their home address. This is below both the national average (73%) and the comparator authorities’ average (80%).
  • Of the comparator authorities, Bolton had the highest percentage of their new placements for children looked after by them during 2015-16, placed within 20 miles of their home address (90%).
  • Derby had 22% of their children in care new placements for 2015-16 placed over 20 miles from the home address. This is above both the national (18%) and comparator (16%) average percentages. In contrast, Bolton had just 9% 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 2015-16, Derby had 40% 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 52% of its total looked after children (as at end 2015-16) placed outside of the LA boundary, compared to 36% nationally and a comparator authorities’ average percentage of 43%. 
  • For Derby, as at end 2015-16, the percentage of all looked after children placed within the local authority boundary who were looked after by Derby was 74%. 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 2015-16, Derby was responsible for 450 children in care in total, but only had 260 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 2016, Derby had 45% of its care leavers aged 19, 20 or 21 as at 31st March in education, employment or training. This is slightly below both the comparator authorities' average (50%), and the national average (49%).
  • For the same year, Derby had 86% of its care leavers aged 19, 20 or 21 in suitable accommodation. This compares to 84% for the comparator authorities’ average percentage and a national figure of 83%.

Health Outcomes

  • The percentage of Derby's children in care who had their teeth checked by a dentist decreased from 93.8% for 2014-15 to 80.0% for 2015-16. This is a sharper decline, than that seen nationally, from 85.8% for 2014-15 to 84.1% for 2015-16.
  • The percentage of Derby’s children in care who had an annual health assessment decreased slightly from 75.0% in 2014-15 to 74.3% in 2015-16. In contrast, the national percentage increased slightly, from 89.7% (2014-15) to 90.0% (2015-16).
  • Derby performed exceptionally well in terms of the percentage of children in care whose immunisations were up to date, with a change from 98.4% (2014-15) to 100.0% (2015-16). The latter figure compares to a 2015-16 comparator authorities’ average percentage of 93.0% and a national average of 87.2%.
  • For 2015-16, in Derby, 83.3% 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 considerably higher than the percentage for 2014-15 for Derby (72.7%). The 2015-16 percentage for Derby is very similar to the 2015-16 national percentage (83.2%), but is below the equivalent comparator authorities’ average percentage (89.4%).

Strength and Difficulties Questionnaires (SDQ’s)

  • For 2015-16, Derby has a higher SDQ score (16.4) than any of its comparator authorities. This score is higher than both the national score (14.0) and the comparator authorities’ average score (14.9).
  • Derby’s completion percentage has increased from 68% (2014-15) to 70% (2015-16). The latter percentage compares to 75% nationally and a comparator authorities’ average percentage of 74.1%.

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