Councils praised

PUBLISHED: 12:22 09 November 2006 | UPDATED: 11:11 06 May 2010

SERVICES for children and young people across Comet country are generally good but improvements can still be made, according to a report out last week. Both Hertfordshire and Bedfordshire County Councils were praised for their contribution to improving th

SERVICES for children and young people across Comet country are generally good but improvements can still be made, according to a report out last week.

Both Hertfordshire and Bedfordshire County Councils were praised for their contribution to improving the health of youngsters in their area and for the encouragement they have shown in getting children to attend school.

The progress both councils have made in reducing teenage pregnancies was also highlighted, with Hertford-shire's efforts "continuing to be impressive, particularly in Stevenage".

Despite generally good comments from the report, there is still room for improvement for both authorities.

For Bedfordshire the achievement of post-16 students "falls below the national figure" and in Hertfordshire the social care services are reported as only providing "the minimum requirements for maintaining and improving the outcomes for children and young people" although it has a good capacity to improve.

The report, which was issued on behalf of the Office for Standards in Education (Ofsted) and the Commission for Social Care Inspection, graded both councils in three separate areas.

On the contribution their children's services make in maintaining and improving outcomes for children and young people Hertfordshire council was rated "good" and Bedfordshire rated "adequate".

The ratings were switched when it came to identifying the contribution their social care services make in maintaining and improving the outcomes of youngsters, with Bedfordshire rated "good" and Hertfordshire rated "adequate".

Both authorities were rated "good" when judged on their overall capacity to improve services for children and young people.

Bedfordshire County Councillor David Reedman, cabinet member for children and young people, said: "We are delighted that the inspectors have confirmed the continuing improvements to children's services in Bedfordshire.

"I hope the children, parents, carers and young people in Bedfordshire are experiencing the benefits of those improvements.

"It was particularly pleasing that the inspectors noted that the county council has addressed almost all the weaker areas they asked us to look at in last year's report.

"Our children's services are on an upward path and plans are already taking place to tackle the areas where we know we can do better."

Hertfordshire was unavailable to provide a spokesman for comment.

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