In April this year, the council set up its own Youth Offending Team (IW YOT) having branched off from the larger Wessex Youth Offending Team.
The team comprises of workers from probation, police, education, health and social services and focuses on dealing with children and young people who have been involved in criminal and anti-social behaviour.
The inspection, which took place in May, viewed how the team perform in three key areas.
For safeguarding work, which aims to protect the young person, inspectors found the team did the work well 68% of the time in line with the UK average but almost double the lowest score in the country.
In the ‘risk of harm to others’ section, which outlines how the youth offending team protect the public from crime and disorder by young people, inspectors gave a high rating of 79%. This is 16 percentage points above the national average and only six percentage points below the highest in the country.
In the final ‘likelihood of re-offending’ category, which measures how effectively work is undertaken to reduce the likelihood of an individual re-offending, the IW YOT scored 68%. Although this is three percentage points below the national average, it is significantly higher than the lowest in the UK.
The inspection report also found that of 25 children and young people who completed a questionnaire during the visit, most said the IW YOT had made it less likely they would re-offend in future.
Cllr Roger Mazillius, IW Council Cabinet member with responsibility for community safety said “This is a very encouraging inspection for the IW youth offending team, especially as this is its first since branching off from the Wessex YOT in April.
“While there are improvements that will be made, all staff should be praised for their high level of commitment and expertise in what is often a very difficult and challenging line of work.”
Julie Fox, Assistant Chief Inspector at HM Inspectorate of Probation said “Overall, we consider this a very encouraging set of findings. The Isle of Wight YOT has a firm baseline for continued improvement in practice. Implementing the recommendations in the inspection report will contribute to that improvement.”