Shadow Children’s Minister Tim Loughton has announced that a Conservative Government would publish a "serious case review" for the first time into the death of a child under the care of social workers. He has secured the agreement of Birmingham Council to publish the report into Khyra Ishaq.

Children’s Secretary Ed Balls opposes the idea saying professionals would not cooperate with an inquiry if they knew it would be published. I should have thought that any social worker refusing to fully and honestly answer questions in such cicumstances would be guilty of gross misconduct. Also that decent social workers would oppose a cover up.

Loughton has also produced figures showing a big rise in social worker vacancies with one in seven posts vacant. Low morale and high bureaucracy are blamed. But The Times this morning rightly questions whether simply having more social workers is the answer. There needs to be reform.