Secure Children's Homes

There are 14 individually managed Secure Children’s Homes throughout England and Wales encompassing a range of services within a secure environment that support the individual needs of the children in its care. They provide placements for boys and girls aged between 10 and 17 and include full residential care, educational facilities and healthcare provision.

Secure Children’s Homes (SCH) care for vulnerable young people in a high quality, safe and therapeutic environment. Each of the 14 homes operates with a high staffing ratio; the overarching aim is to encourage residents to develop a range of personal skills, supported by changes in behaviour and attitude that will enable individuals to manage safely and responsibly on exit. SCH are subject to twice yearly inspection by Ofsted according to criteria within in the Social Care Common Inspection Framework (SCCIF).


News and Updates

First Edition of the SANctuary Newsletter!


The first edition of the SANctuary, the SAN quarterly newsletter, is available for download. Please click the thumbnail above to view a copy. The SANctuary highlights issues, celebrations, activities, latest research and successes of Secure Children's Homes.

Secure children’s homes – helping the most vulnerable children


Ofsted’s Senior Officer for the Secure Estate discusses secure children’s homes.

How the corona virus lockdown has affected children in custody


The Children's Commissioner has recently published a report examining the impact of lockdown on the well-being and education of children in custody.


Each home supports its residents to engage in learning through formal on-site education. Initial assessments ensure young people make good progress from their starting points, they gain qualifications and experience that will support their training and employability prospects on exit. Education is inspected annually according to specific guidance within the SCCIFspects on exit. Education is inspected annually according to specific guidance within the SCCIF.



Young people resident in SCH present with complex histories and often display challenging behaviour and many have experienced significant trauma. All homes offer residents input from a range of mental health and associated professionals to build self-esteem and equip young people with strategies to enable their successful reintegration into the community. The Health provision is subject to an annual CQC inspection as part of the wider home inspection.


The Secure Accommodation Network


(SAN) is the body responsible for the development and promotion of Secure Children’s Home services and as such provides this website. Its membership consists of representatives from all Secure Children’s Homes in England and Wales.


The Secure Accommodation Network meets regularly: there are at least 2 annual national meetings for members, stakeholders and partner organisations to share good practice and agree on a range of service developments and improvements. The Core Group includes representatives from a range of homes including those providing welfare placements, YCS placements and both. This group meets regularly, and works closely with national and regional bodies to develop best practice and improve outcomes for young people placed within the secure estate.

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