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Positive Police Performance

Over the past year, the CRB has seen significant improvements in the timeliness of police forces completing their checks on CRB applications and returning them to us. One force in particular which has dramatically reduced their number of ‘Work in Progress’ applications, is the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS).

In Jan 2011, MPS had 100,000 Work in Progress applications in total, of which 83,000 were over 25 days old and 10,000 over 60 days old.

This effectively meant that any application sent to MPS was taking 25 days or more to be returned and, in some cases, 40 days or more. These aged applications, in particular the 60 days or older cases, were causing concern as they were resulting in hardship for applicants and having a knock-on effect on employers and their recruitment activities.

A joint action plan was agreed between the CRB and MPS, which started with the recruitment of a new management team to implement the changes.

The action plan consisted of a process review, improvements on output levels and better recruitment processes within MPS, gaining support from other senior partners within the Service. The plan was tracked with weekly teleconferences between the CRB and MPS. Due to these improvements, and our joint working, the workload of CRB applications at the MPS was greatly reduced.

By December 2011, Work in Progress applications were dramatically reduced to 23,000; with cases 60 days old or more down to 1,500.

To reduce cases over 25 days old, a further recovery plan was drafted by the MPS in January this year. As of July, the milestones agreed within the plan were being met, so that the current workload of cases at the MPS is 1,200 applications which are over 25 days old and 300 which are 60 days or over. This demonstrates a vast improvement from recent years and has been achieved due to the effective working relationships between the CRB and our police partners.

Paul Lowton, CRB Head of Relationship Management, says: “The improvements seen within MPS are a credit to the efforts of their staff, which have enabled significant changes to be implemented over the last 12 months. The ability for the CRB to accurately predict the level of demand and referrals to MPS has been another contributing factor in MPS’s ability to deliver these service improvements.”

OFSTED update their guidance

OFSTED has updated its safeguarding FAQs for the four settings which it regulates. These are:

  • Children’s Services,
  • Schools,
  • Adults Learning and Skills; and
  • Early Years and Childcare.

The changes reflect their new inspection frameworks and the Protection of Freedoms Act. Inspection guidance will be updated and published in early September.

To read these FAQs, please visit the relevant sections on OFSTED’s website: www.ofsted.gov.uk.

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