Page last updated at 12:08 GMT, Tuesday, 23 February 2010

'Baby Peter' council's child services 'improved'

Baby P
Baby Peter died from abuse despite 60 visits from authorities

Ofsted inspectors say that children's services at Haringey council have made "good progress" in the aftermath of the death of baby Peter Connolly.

The north London council's children's services had faced heavy criticism from inspectors after the death of the 17-month-old in August 2007.

But now an Ofsted report says there are clear signs of improvement.

"Baby Peter's death was a wake up call to us all," said council leader Claire Kober.

Ofsted says that a week-long inspection found "extensive and consistent evidence of good progress" in services protecting vulnerable children.

'Not complacent'

The report also says there is "good capacity for further improvement".

Welcoming the report's findings of "significant improvements", Ms Kober said it showed the council was moving in the right direction.

"We are not complacent and this is by no means the end of our journey," she said.

Inspectors commented on the introduction of "groundbreaking" schemes in the London borough.

These included "safeguarding champions" in which a named manager takes charge of cases of children under the age of three who have a child protection plan.

Ofsted's previous report was scathing about the way the department was run and said there had been a failure to identify children at immediate risk of harm.

This followed the case of Baby Peter, who had been seen repeatedly by social workers before he died with more than 50 injuries.

"It is our responsibility to remain vigilant in his memory and never stop improving," said Ms Kober.

Children's Secretary Ed Balls said he was "pleased to see the progress Haringey has made, as shown in Ofsted's progress report, and particularly the very clear evidence of significant improvements in children's safety in Haringey".

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