From Saturday 28 October 2023, secondary legislation makes it unlawful for local authorities to house children in care aged 16 and 17 in ‘supported accommodation’ if the provider has not sent registration documents to Ofsted (more here).

Latest published statistics show 41% of 16 and 17 year-olds in care in England live in supported accommodation. This includes bedsits, flats, shared houses with adult strangers, hostels, and even caravans, boats and tents in exceptional circumstances.

Those who own and run supported accommodation (the majority is run for profit) do not provide any care to teenagers living there – this is what distinguishes this type of arrangement from children’s homes and foster care.

The minimum frequency of Ofsted inspections will be every three years, and inspectors will visit only a sample of properties. Ofsted proposes to give providers two working days’ notice of inspections of supported accommodation. By contrast, every children’s home must be inspected at least once a year, with most inspected twice a year. All children’s homes’ inspections are unannounced.

Our #KeepCaringTo18 campaign seeks to ensure that every child in care receives care where they live – until at least 18.

Meet the campaign steering group:

Campaign supporters:

More than 70 organisations and thousands of individuals support our #KeepCaringTo18 campaign. We’re very pleased to introduce you to some of our supporters below.