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Family Futures rated Outstanding by Ofsted, 2018

“A nationally recognised centre of excellence for therapeutic adoption and adoption support services”

Family Futures has been rated ‘Outstanding’ by Ofsted (August 2018) for the third time in a row and under the new, more robust Ofsted inspection framework. Ofsted recognised that:

“The agency is a nationally recognised centre of excellence for therapeutic adoption and adoption support services which address the damage caused by early developmental trauma. The agency has developed its own highly effective therapeutic model over many years, which has been externally evaluated.”

“Children and their families receive holistic care of exceptional quality, which results in excellent experiences, outcomes and progress.”

Read Ofsted’s 2018 report here

Alan Burnell, Family Futures’ Registered Manager, comments on our Outstanding Ofsted rating, 2018:

Modelling a better future for families   

If 20 years of helping families heal is a crowning achievement, then the jewels in our crown are this summer’s Ofsted inspection and our recent round of research. We are very proud that for the third inspection in a row and under the new, more robust Ofsted inspection framework we once again have been judged as Outstanding. One of the criteria of the inspection framework is ‘how well children, young people and adults are helped and protected’. This was judged to be Outstanding. The inspectors reached this conclusion in part because of our research programme. Read More…

New report evaluates adoption and post-adoption services

Realistic Positivity: understanding the additional needs of young children placed for adoption, and supporting families when needs are unexpected

This research by the Council for Disabled Children explores support for adopted children and their families in relation to special educational needs, disability and health. Interviews with parents and professionals are considered alongside policy and available evidence.

Alan Burnell, Registered Manager at Family Futures comments on the report:

It’s refreshing to read an independent report that evaluates current adoption and post-adoption services with a fresh pair of eyes. Sadly those eyes see many of the same shortcomings that Family Futures has identified as a result of our work in the field of adoption.

We very much support the findings from the parent interviews which once again highlight the need for comprehensive, developmental, multidisciplinary assessments of children prior to placement, as well as the need for a post-adoption support service that has the expertise to meet those needs.

We realise that some adoptive parents and professionals may balk at the idea of labelling adopted children as ‘disabled’. At Family Futures we have said from the outset 20 years ago, that the majority of adopted children, because of early adversity, neglect and abuse, have  ‘invisible special needs’ at the point of placement. Neuroscience has confirmed this and the label of developmental trauma is now used to describe their developmental challenges. Labelling children does not define their limitations but should be used to shine a light on what their needs really are and how they can be met.

Alan Burnell, Registered Manager comments on new research on Child to Parent Violence and Aggression

CPVA – a major problem that needs to be addressed to prevent unnecessary disruptions

A Summary of the Let’s Talk About: Child to Parent Violence and Aggression (CPVA) 2018 Survey report by Dr W Thorley and Al Coates MBE is now available to download. The findings were highlighted by an ITV News broadcast this week: six in ten families living with child on parent violence experience daily attacks. 538 families across the country took part and 53% of the sample were adoptive parents, foster carers, kinship carers or guardians. Alan Burnell, our Registered Manager comments on the findings:

“This is an important report highlighting a major problem that has been around for some time but has slipped under the social policy radar. Child to Parent Violence and Aggression has many causes as the report says. For adopted and fostered children we know from our experience that in the majority of cases this is a consequence of early child abuse and neglect, and needs a robust therapeutic response from placing agencies. The government should prioritise the Adoption Support Fund to help address this issue if they want to prevent unnecessary disruptions.”

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