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Sandwell Council hires new director for under-fire children's department
4:14pm Thursday 10th October 2013 in News
ONE of the most difficult jobs in Sandwell Council has a new incumbent - director of the under-fire children’s services department.
Matthew Sampson has been lured from the same job at Sheffied Council and has been charged with improving the department after its inadequate Ofsted rating.
The department has been a graveyard for high flying council employees with the previous director Helen Smith resigning due to April’s damning Ofsted report into care management.
Mr Sampson will report to cabinet member for children's services Councillor Simon Hackett, who replaced Cllr Bob Badham after he lost his position due to April’s report.
Cllr Hackett said: “We are delighted that Matthew Sampson, the current director of children and families in Sheffield, has agreed to undertake the equivalent role in Sandwell.
"Leadership in Sheffield is regarded by Ofsted as good, and the council has successfully made many of the changes we wish to see.
"Sandwell embarked on an innovative improvement partnership in January this year with iMPOWER and Penna.
“The successful recruitment of our new senior roles is part of that agreement."
Last November the council signed a £1.15million deal with private company iMPOWER to help run children’s services.
The department has been a problem for the authority for several years after complaints of bad management structures and too many agency workers.
In 2009 the Government was forced to issue an improvement notice after an inadequate Ofsted report.
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