Helen joined Essex County Council in July 2011 and is the Executive Director for Children Families & Education. Prior to this role, Helen held similar positions in Tower Hamlets and the London Borough of Merton. Helen currently has responsibility for:
- Children's Social Care
- Commissioning Children's Services
- Children's Social Care Support and Improvement Service
Helen is a qualified Social Worker, and holds a combined Degree (BA Hons) and CQSW from Nottingham Polytechnic. On qualifying, she worked for ten years for Leicestershire County Council where she undertook a range of social work and managerial roles.
Helen is passionate about effective social work practice and has contributed throughout her career to a range of initiatives, most recently contributing to the Munro Review of Child Protection.
During her London years, she chaired and authored much of the pan London Child Protection Procedures. She co-authored “Ten pitfalls in assessment and how to avoid them" and has co-authored an article “Practice needs to be braver, Child Protection and the paradigm of risk".
Children & Families was graded Outstanding for the impact of leadership on outcomes for children, during the ILACS pilot inspection, in 2017. Helen has been a strong supporter of sector-led improvement, and, as such, she is a lead contractor with the DfE for improving children's services as Intervention Advisers, and as a Partner in Practice, to other local authorities, graded Inadequate and Requires Improvement, by Ofsted, respectively.