Top marks for Exmoor Grove Children’s Home in Hartlepool

Exmoor Grove manager Sylvia Lowe holding a copy of their Ofsted report as fellow staff (left to right) Sally Craigs, Joanne Morter, Lindsay Bage, Steve Morrell, Debbie Wray, Katie Bage and Maureen Bage jump for joy. Picture by FRANK REID
Exmoor Grove manager Sylvia Lowe holding a copy of their Ofsted report as fellow staff (left to right) Sally Craigs, Joanne Morter, Lindsay Bage, Steve Morrell, Debbie Wray, Katie Bage and Maureen Bage jump for joy. Picture by FRANK REID
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STAFF at a children’s home are celebrating 
after securing another top inspection report.

Exmoor Grove Children’s Home, in Hartlepool, has been given an overall “good” rating for the fourth consecutive time after a recent visit from Ofsted inspectors.

The care unit, which was fully inspected in September, offers short-break residential care for up to seven children and young people with physical and/or learning disabilities.

Home manager Sylvia Lowe said: “We are really delighted with this report.

“It is recognition of all the hard work.”

Members of Hartlepool Borough Council’s children services committee met to discuss the positive Ofsted report at a recent meeting.

Sally Robinson, the council’s assistant director of child and adult services, presented a report which said: “The overall effectiveness of the home was judged to be good.

“The inspector found overall the home provides a good quality of care for children, staff are good at seeking and taking in to account children’s wishes and feelings about how they should be cared for, creating a caring atmosphere which enables children to relax and feel comfortable during their time at the home.”

The inspectors also praised the staffing levels and said children benefit from having individual care plans, risk assessments and “receive good personalised support”.

They added that overall the management team ensures the home is managed efficiently and effectively.

But areas for improvement were also highlighted and the inspection team said most of the shortfalls related to weaknesses in record keeping and the report stipulated one requirement which related to ensuring an appropriate reference for a staff member was in place.

Officers say that has now been done.

Overall though the report was positive and councillors have praised the staff.

Labour councillor Chris Simmons, chairman of the children’s services committee, said: “We should record our thanks to the staff from Exmoor Grove Children’s Home.

“The fact that it is the fourth good inspection in a row is a cause for celebration.

“We will write to them to show our appreciation.”

Exmoor Grove is registered with Ofsted to provide short-break care provision for young people between the ages of five and 18.

The home was a purpose built building to deliver care for children with disabilities and opened in September 1985.

Ofsted has a duty to inspect children’s homes twice a year.