A children’s home for Reading young people with special educational needs and/or disabilities (SEND) has been rated ‘Outstanding’ by Ofsted.

Inspectors gave Pinecroft in south Reading top marks for the overall experience and progress of children and young people at the home, how they are helped and protected and for the effectiveness of leaders and managers.

Pinecroft has become the second children’s home run by Brighter Futures for Children (BFfC) to be awarded an ‘Outstanding’ Ofsted rating this year following the earlier inspection of Cressingham.

Shared care support is now provided to Reading families at Pinecroft, which means children receive a three-night stay before returning to their family home for eight nights. The Ofsted report says there has been unanimous positive feedback about the impact this service has had on children and their families.

The inspector said: “Staff offer highly-personalised and well-planned care that meets children’s individual needs exceptionally well. Staff gain the views of children, which are central to all aspects of their care and activities while at the home.”

The home underwent an upgrade to improve its facilities last year which, the report says, has resulted in an “exceptional outdoor space for children” and a new sensory room containing modern and innovative technology which encourages children to play.

The inspector notes how staff demonstrate an excellent understanding of the risks and vulnerabilities of the children in their care and that they manage their emotional and behavioural needs very well.

The management team is “strong and highly effective” and supported by a committed staff team who work together extremely well, the report says.

It continues that skilled managers offer brilliant support to staff which means that children are looked after by a highly capable workforce.

Di Smith, Board Chair of Brighter Futures for Children, said: “I’m thrilled the wonderful team at Pinecroft have received the acknowledgement they deserve for their commitment and dedication to the children in their care.

“Pinecroft is a very special place and I am so proud that we have such a brilliant resource to offer the children of Reading and their families.”

Cllr Graeme Hoskin, Lead Councillor for Children’s Services, said: “When visiting Pinecroft, I was immediately struck by the passion and commitment of staff to make a huge difference to the lives of the children who stay there. I’m delighted by the rightful recognition of their fantastic commitment and hard work that shines out of this report.

“Alongside our fantastic staff, the recently upgraded facilities are providing truly exceptional space for children with SEND and their families. Congratulations to everyone involved.”

Inspectors visited Pinecroft 10 & 11 January. The full Ofsted report can be found at: Ofsted | 2502334