Thursday, October 15, 2015

Down with the Kids ?

Sadly, Yentob and Batmanghelidjh came to their grilling by MPs laden with tales, rather than evidence. "5 days after Kids Company closed, a boy was murdered, there were stabbings and four suicide attempts", said Al. This loose, unscientific approach to causation and correlation continued throughout nearly three hours of uncomfortable to-ing and fro-ing.

And their memories seemed very poor. If you are given money by local authorities to provide specialist teaching, you know about Ofsted. And, I would argue, you would know how they rate your services, especially if you win an "outstanding" or "cause for concern" rating. Camila thought the most recent Ofsted might have been in Bristol, but wasn't sure.

If you are in a charity dealing with children, you know all about the legal requirements of "safeguarding". It should be a regular agenda item at executive level. Neither Al nor Camila seemed to get what Bernard Jenkin was on about.  Maybe Al missed the BBC Executive meetings when the Good Corporation reported on child protection standards at Auntie in July.

If you are in a charity short of funds, you balance expenditure against income, and hope to find long-term routes to deliver a surplus. It is not a long-term strategy to rely on Coldplay, or your artist mates flogging odd bits of art. Or arguing that there'll be riots unless the Government coughs up. Remember Kids Company only operated in South London, Bristol and Liverpool. I can't remember any recent riots in areas living without a Batmanghelidjh safety-net.

If you are charity which takes "clients" through self-referral, you institute clear and detailed guidelines that ensure you are not taken for a set of soft-ollies by streetwise teenagers or their mentors, who recognise  and learn the phrase-making required to win regular envelopes of cash.

If you are the chairman of a charity, you learn about best practice, and the need for fresh eyes to scrutinise the work of the management team. You might remember what happened at the ICA.

The trouble is stats. In the 2013 annual report (which first used the concept of 36,000 clients) it was reported that "Kids Company staff record every significant interaction with the children and young people on our custom-built database – which a government minister described as being better than anything he had seen nationally."

Maybe Al and Camila should have done a little bit more database research before their interview.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Other people who read this.......