Number of referrals where there is a concern about a child's welfare
In 2019/20, referrals to Children’s Social Care decreased slightly against the previous year – falling from 1996 in 18/19 to 1882 in 19/20, a decrease of 5.7%.
In 2020/21, there have been 2029 children referred to social care, which is 7.8% higher than 19/20. Referrals in January 2021 were below the 19/20 monthly average of 156, while February and March were above.
Latest available benchmarking data indicates that Shropshire’s referral levels are below most of its statistical neighbour (SN) group. The average for the group being 422.8 referrals for every 10,000 U18 residents, where Shropshire’s y/e 20/21 figure gives a rate of 338.
Most referrals (94.6%) go on to receive a social work assessment, with only 5% requiring no further action.
The main referral source during the year has been the police (28%). As expected with covid-19 closures, referrals from schools fell during the various lockdown periods and spiked upon reopening.