In response to the publication of the Ofsted inspection report for Medway Secure Training Centre (STC), Nacro Chief Executive, Campbell Robb, said:
“We are incredibly proud of the role Nacro education staff have played in helping children at Medway STC progress in education and get on a pathway to success. As recognised in the inspection report, education is rated good and children make very good progress towards achieving their academic qualifications and improving their social skills. As a result of Nacro’s ethos and curriculum, young people have re-engaged with learning and some have had their first experience of a work placements and developed skills that will fundamentally change their lives.
But the truth is we are operating in a broken system. Despite the best efforts of staff working in the regime, there are serious failures across the system from significant increases in the use of force to a failure to safeguard children at risk from harm. This is simply unacceptable..
So many of the children in the system have for too long been overlooked and written off. Often impacted by violence, trauma and abuse earlier in their lives, children arrive at settings such as Medway in need of care, support and guidance. At Nacro we are ambitious for every child we work with, taking a personalised approach which recognises the impact of their previous experiences and their hopes for the future. The results speak for themselves – young people’s achievement rates are significantly higher than the national average for Further Education, and the report highlights how children take pride in their work and achievements.
In many ways the young people’s achievements in education are even more remarkable. And it proves that with the right approach and partnerships we can help children turn their lives around and achieve their potential.
But we are only one part of the system and things have to change. The new government must commit to fundamental reform to give all children caught in the youth justice system the best chance at a second chance. Our justice system has for too long being under resourced and overlooked. It is time for change.”