A senior advisor helping with the reform of Herefordshire’s children’s services is stepping down from next month.

Gladys Rhodes White OBE was appointed as “improvement advisor” to Herefordshire Council in April 2021 after the government issued an improvement notice on its children and young people service.

A Herefordshire Council spokesperson said: “Gladys Rhodes White’s contract with the Department for Education comes to an end at the end of March and her focus will shift to other projects.”


They added: “The DfE are currently undertaking a search for a replacement improvement advisor for Herefordshire.”

A qualified social worker, Ms Rhodes White has previously worked with children's services departments at Medway, Blackburn, Bradford and Rochdale councils.

She has been approached for comment.


In July 2022 an Ofsted inspection report rated the service inadequate on all counts, leading to a further senior external appointment, children’s commissioner Eleanor Brazil, to monitor reform of the service.

Ms Brazil’s latest report on the department, published in December, said: “Whilst progress has been slower than we would want, there has been positive developments.”

What are your thoughts?

You can send a letter to the editor to have your say by clicking here.

Letters should not exceed 250 words and local issues take precedence.

But she added: “For those of us working to support and challenge Herefordshire, there has been a level of frustration experienced when even with our involvement, issues have not progressed with pace or been concluded.”

She is due to issue a further report in June.

Meanwhile a group of parents unhappy with their experience of the department plan another demonstration to draw attention to what they say are its ongoing failings.

It will be held in High Town, Hereford at noon on Saturday March 9.