How we inspect children’s services

Information and guidance about how we inspect children’s services.

Reference to ‘Care and Social Services Inspectorate Wales’ (CSSIW) in the documents on this page should be read as ‘Care Inspectorate Wales'.


What we check and report

When our inspectors visit a care service, they will consider four core themes:

  • Well-being
  • Care and support
  • Environment
  • Leadership and management

How often we inspect

We inspect children’s homes every year as part of our rolling programme.

We have two types of inspections: full and focused.

Full inspections

During full inspections we check that providers are providing a service according to the law. We also check that they are meeting the conditions of their registration.

Focused inspections

These normally happen when concerns are raised or to follow up on areas of improvement identified at previous inspections. These inspections may only look at some aspects of a service.

All our inspections are unannounced, although in exceptional circumstances, we may call a day or so in advance to minimise any disruption or distress.

Self Assessment of Service Statement (SASS)

More information about completing your SASS  is available on our ' SASS' page.

Help for providers

Providers should read our Code of Practice. It outlines how we inspect services registered under the Regulation and Inspection of Social Care (Wales) Act 2016 (External link).

We have also produced an inspection handbook for adult and children’s homes services and frameworks of what we will inspect against.

Download documents