Fail­ings emerged in the weeks af­ter Tyler’s death

The Peterborough Evening Telegraph - - Uk & world Update -

CHIL­DREN’S ser­vices cab­i­net mem­ber Sheila Scott has said it be­came ap­par­ent a few weeks af­ter the death of Tyler Whe­lan that there had been fail­ures in the depart­ment charged with look­ing af­ter vul­ner­a­ble chil­dren in the city.

A Se­ri­ous Case Re­view by the Peter­bor­ough Safe­guard­ing Chil­dren Board has high­lighted a se­ries of fail­ures in Peter­bor­ough City Coun­cil’s chil­dren’s ser­vices depart­ment in the han­dling of the Tyler case.

In­terim chil­dren’s ser­vices di­rec­tor Mal­colm Newsam said on Mon­day that there were two op­por­tu­ni­ties where more ac­tion could have been taken prior to Tyler’s death in March 2011

This re­lates to leg and groin in­juries suf­fered by Tyler in the year be­fore his death, which were re­ported to so­cial work­ers.

Tyler’s death pre­ceded a hugely crit­i­cal Of­sted re­port which found the depart­ment to be fail­ing in seven out of nine child safe­guard­ing cat­e­gories, prompt­ing the res­ig­na­tion of then di­rec­tor John Richards.

Re­call­ing the re­port­ing of Tyler’s death, Cllr Scott, who has faced calls to re­sign, said: “At first I un­der­stood that we knew Tyler’s fam­ily, but it be­came clear over the next few weeks that it went fur­ther than that and we might have failed in some of the pro­cesses that we fol­lowed.

“By that Au­gust 2011, Of­sted was in and by then we knew two things: We knew what Of­sted was find­ing; and we knew there was a bit of cross­over be­tween Of­sted’s find­ings and find­ings of the se­ri­ous case re­view.”

Among the com­ments in the seri- ous case re­view were:

Chil­dren’s ser­vices failed to carry out an ini­tial as­sess­ment into the Whe­lan fam­ily to a “suf­fi­cient stan­dard” and two fol­low-up “core” as­sess­ments were not car­ried out.

In­ves­ti­ga­tion went no fur­ther than in­ter­views in hospi­tal, with no record of need to meet Elvis Lee and visit the home to see where the “un­usual in­juries” oc­curred.

Man­agers failed to en­sure the core as­sess­ments took place.

There was a “lack of pro­fes­sional cu­rios­ity” dis­played and while it may not have made a dif­fer­ence to the out­come, the missed op­por­tu­ni­ties to do core as­sess­ments “con­sid­er­ably re­duced the op­por­tu­nity to un­der­stand (Tyler’s) life, the level of care he re­ceived and ul­ti­mately the level of risk he lived with.”

PRES­SURE: Cllr Sheila Scott.

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