Melanie Barnett to join West Northamptonshire Council as Director of Children’s Services

West Northamptonshire Council has appointed Melanie Barnett as its new Director of Children’s Services.

Melanie, who will be taking up the position at WNC in August, is currently the Director for the All-age Disability Service at Worcestershire Children First, the organisation which provides children’s services countywide for the local authority.

Her current role as Worcestershire County Council’s lead for Special Educational Needs and Disabilities means she will bring with her a proven track record towards delivering and improving outcomes for children and young people with SEND. 

Initially starting out on her career in children’s services nearly 20 years ago as a social worker, Melanie has extensive leadership experience and expertise across all aspects of the sector and a passion for driving changes to transform and improve local area systems, and was a member of the Executive Director team of Worcestershire Children First that achieved a Good overall Children's Services Ofsted outcome in May last year.

Melanie joins West Northamptonshire as it embarks on the next chapter of its ongoing improvement journey for children’s services – with social care outcomes for youngsters continuing to make encouraging progress and receive growing positive feedback from Ofsted and where partners are working more closely together on a fresh strategy to improve outcomes for SEND families across the area.

"I am really pleased to be joining West Northamptonshire Council and am looking forward to working collaboratively and in partnership with colleagues both inside and outside of the council, as well as children, young people and their families. I am excited to be a part of the continuing improvement journey and ultimately helping more children and young people to achieve better outcomes, and reach their potential, in West Northamptonshire"Melanie Barnett
“I’m extremely pleased and excited to announce the appointment of Melanie Barnett into the key leadership role of Director for Children’s Services at WNC. Improving outcomes for our children and young people is a top priority for us and Melanie brings with her considerable experience in all aspects of these services, with specific expertise around SEND which is among our key focus areas”.

“There was considerable interest in this role with a significant amount of experienced candidates wanting to join our West Northants team and Melanie performed exceptionally throughout the process. I look forward to working closely with her as we continue on our improvement journey for better outcomes for children and young people.”
Anna Earnshaw, Chief Executive of West Northamptonshire Council

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