Agenda and minutes

Vulnerable Young People Task Group - Thursday, 5th September, 2019 7.00 pm

Venue: Room 1, Civic Centre, Silver Street, Enfield, EN1 3XA. View directions

Contact: Elaine Huckell 

No. Item




Councillor Brett welcomed everyone to the meeting. Apologies had been received from Councillors Stephanos Ioannou, Rick Jewell (Cabinet Member Children’s Services), also from Anne Stoker and Andrea Clemons.



Members of the Committee are invited to identify any disclosable pecuniary, other pecuniary or non-pecuniary interests relevant to items on the agenda.


There were no declarations of interest.



To approve the minutes of the previous meeting held on the 11 July 2019.


The minutes of the previous meeting held on the 11 July 2019 were AGREED.


At the last meeting Angela Bent presented a report on a new Government programme to protect children at risk of exploitation.  The programme was announced in May 2019. It is aimed at delivering support to areas responding to criminal and sexual exploitation.  A sum of £2 million is to be shared by local authorities, and safeguarding partnerships would apply for this money. The process is now at the point of asking for evidence. It is an opportunity for local authorities to share best practice.  Applications will go forward in October.  Angela confirmed that bids will be on behalf of Partnerships.



Suzy Francis to present a report about the service the team provides in schools.

Additional documents:


Suzy Francis (Principal Educational Psychologist), together with Sarif Alrai,

presented a report on the Educational Psychology Service and Schools Emotional Wellbeing Service. 

The Enfield Educational Psychology Service (EPS) is a specialist psychological service for educational settings.  The team works closely with Enfield’s Specialist Multi-Disciplinary CAMHS as well as with other teams in Enfield.  The EPS is a joint service with the Schools Emotional Wellbeing Service (SEWS)


The following was highlighted:

  1. Enfield Council and other commissioners fund specific services from the EPS. This supports the Council in delivery of its statutory duties. There are currently 19.5 FTE employed EP’s. Seven main grade EP’s are funded by LBE.
  2. The statutory demands on the Educational Psychology Service (EPS) have increased significantly since the introduction of the SEND Reforms in 2015.
  3. One of the main statutory duties is in providing the educational psychology advice for the purpose of informing the Educational Health and Care Needs Assessment.  The number of psychological advices had risen from 314 for 2015/ 16 to 515 for 2018/19 and it is expected to rise further this year, with 220 from April to July 2019.
  4. The schools or educational setting can contact the EPS & SEWS for advice and support in relation to a tragic event or a trauma. Support may be in form of advice, information, resources or a visit. Under a ‘critical incident response’ the service would respond as soon as possible and usually within one day.
  5. Schools and colleges can purchase further time from the Enfield EPS through a Service Level Agreement for non-statutory involvement. The report gave an overview of the current commissions such as advisory service for Autism and Autism Pathway in CAMHS, delivery of evidenced based parenting programme in schools and behaviour Support Service. Work has also started with the youth offending service and the Schools and Early Years Improvement Service have commissioned the EPS to provide consultation and support for Nurture Group staff. Nurture Groups provide interventions in school for children who have emotional needs.  


The following issues were raised by Members:

  1. The service does not hold a waiting list.  Schools support the special educational needs through the ‘assess, do, plan, review’ process.  Schools request the involvement of the EPS to provide additional advice, guidance and assessment as appropriate and as agreed with parents and school.  Schools purchase the service and are charged a day rate.
  2. It was asked if there had been any additional cases of racism resulting from tensions following on from Brexit issues?  Suzy Francis was not aware of any issues that had been raised through the EPS.  Councillor Brett may discuss this further with Tony Theodoulou, The Executive Director, People. 


An overview of the number of children and young people who had received EPS involvement was given and the following was noted

·         A higher percentage of males to females who had received a service from EPS (approximately 75% to 25%).

·         Social Emotional and Mental Health (SEMH) (primary need) numbers show a slight decline this year which may be due to us  ...  view the full minutes text for item 212.



The dates of future meetings of the Vulnerable Young People Task Group for the year:


Tuesday 3 December 2019 and

Tuesday 10 March 2020


All meetings to commence at 7:00pm


The dates of future meetings for the Vulnerable Young People Task Group are:

Tuesday 3 December 2019 and

Tuesday 10 March 2020.


Future Reports -

The following items to be discussed at the December meeting-

  1. Missing Children – (Maria Anastasi and Florah Shiringo)
  2. Community Groups to be invited to discuss issues of exploitation (Claire Whetstone)
  3. Nexus – An update to be provided by Mervin Cato (Head of Behaviour Support Services)
  4. Modern Slavery Team – Sharon Burgess and Fiona Centala will attend December meeting to discuss the plans for the local operational trafficking/ modern slavery team.  They will provide an update on the work of the team so far.
  5. Police Update.




To consider passing a resolution under Section 100(A) of the Local Government Act 1972 excluding the press and public from the meeting for the items of business listed on part 2 of the agenda on the grounds that they involve the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in those paragraphs of Part 1 of Schedule 12A to the Act (as amended by the Local Government (Access to Information) (Variation) Order 2006).


(Members are asked to refer to the part two agenda).


Resolved in accordance with the principles of Section 100A (4) of the Local Government Act 1972 to exclude the press and public from the meeting for the following item of business on the grounds that it involved the likely disclosure of exempt information as defined in paragraph 3 of the Part 1 of Schedule 12A to the Act (as amended by the Local Government (Access to Information) (Variation) Order 2006.



To receive a report from Joe Fitzgerald, (FAST Team Manager, Schools and Children’s Services) about Adolescent Homelessness.



A presentation was provided by Joe Fitzgerald, (FAST Team Manager, Schools and Children’s Services) about Adolescent Homelessness. 


He highlighted the following:

  • The Family and Adolescent Support Team (FAST) consists of 1 team manager, 3 social workers and a commissioned sessional family mediator.
  • The aim of the FAST team is to safeguard the well-being of the young person and prevent family breakdown and homelessness. It provides a family support service to vulnerable young people aged 11 to 15 and their families where there is a risk of family breakdown.
  • FAST aims to prevent homelessness for 16 to 17year olds, through the use of mediation. If young people cannot stay at home, they would support them into independent living.
  • The team take referrals mainly from the MASH (Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub) but also young people can self-refer or be referred from other agencies such as colleges or the youth offending unit. An appointment would be offered that day and a quick assessment would be made of their circumstances and parents would be spoken to on the same day to ensure the young person is safe that night.
  • We would provide family support and hold discussions which may include other family members such as aunts/ other relatives.
  • The team tries to keep caseloads low – approximately 8 to 10 cases per social worker which allows for more frequent visits. The aim is to ensure support is in place for a young person to return home.  It is essential to have a positive and trusted relationship with clients. The team are focused on improving family resilience and improving coping skills within family networks.
  • Christian Action Housing provides accommodation for those who cannot stay at home, this is for a limited period whilst support is given to the family to move forward.


The following issues were raised:

  • Confirmation was given that we keep information / local data sets and the team has an improvement plan.  It was also asked if many children are presenting with special needs and it was confirmed that this sometimes happens.
  • Some young people from the LGBT community had been referred, or had referred themselves, to the FAST team. This issue may be, of concern, for some communities where ‘coming out’ may be difficult.

It was thought some young people may also be questioning their gender and need help.  It was thought promotional materials may be useful in schools/colleges so that young people would know that support is available. 


Joe Fitzgerald and the FAST Team were thanked for the presentation and for the service they provide to young people and their families.