Regulating supported accommodation for looked after children and care leavers aged 16 and 17

Closed 16 Jan 2023

Opened 5 Dec 2022


The Department for Education is seeking views before regulations are laid that will introduce quality standards and registration and inspection requirements for providers of supported accommodation that accommodates looked after children and care leavers aged 16 and 17. This type of provision is often referred to independent or semi-independent provision, or as ‘unregulated’ provision as it is not currently registered and inspected by Ofsted. This consultation seeks views on:

  • The Quality Standards
  • Guidance that will accompany the regulations
  • The requirements that providers will need to comply with in addition to the Quality Standards
  • The Ofsted regime, including how Ofsted will register, inspect and take enforcement action against providers.

Why your views matter

This consultation invites views on proposals for the new regulations for supported accommodation for looked after children and care leavers aged 16 and 17, and as a result, the changes for providers and local authorities placing children and young people in these settings.

We will use the consultation findings to finalise the regulations, Quality Standards and accompanying guidance. We would like to hear your views on our proposals.

This consultation will be open to the public for six weeks. We have also separately published a version of this consultation aimed directly at care experienced children and young people.   

The Department for Education is inviting views through three main sections of this consultation on:

  • The quality standards providers will adhere to
  • The management and administrative requirements on providers
  • Ofsted registration, inspection and enforcement and provider accountability

As a supporting document to this consultation, we have included a draft of the ‘Guide to Supported Accommodation Regulations including Quality Standards. This document should be read alongside the consultation.

Who this is for

  • Providers of supported accommodation
  • Local authorities
  • Children’s social care workforce
  • Relevant national public, private and charitable sector organisations
  • Care experienced young people

We have also published a separate version of this consultation, which is aimed at care exeprienced young people and anyone else who wishes to respond. This consultation can be found at: Introducing new rules for supported accommodation providers: children and young people with experience of care - GOV.UK (

Please review the attached privacy notice before you proceed to the survey. 

What happens next

We will use the input from this consultation to shape and design the policy decisions before the reforms become law in 2023.  We know that these reforms will represent significant change, and we will continue to work closely with the sector following the implementation.

Following the consultation, we will consider the responses received and publish a response in due course, setting out how the final reforms before they are laid in 2023.


  • Social workers
  • Team managers
  • Service managers
  • Principle social workers
  • Directors of children's services


  • Accommodation (Looked after children)
  • Advocacy (Looked after children)
  • Care leavers and former looked-after children
  • Financial support (Looked after children)
  • Health and wellbeing (Looked after children)
  • Programmes and initiatives (Looked after children)
  • Social care standards and guidance