Sharon Shoesmith’s appeal against her dismissal as Director of Children’s Service is being heard today at the Court of Appeal (read more here).  She is arguing that she was denied a fair hearing and refers to Ed Balls’ announcement that he was directing the Council to dismiss her on the basis of the ‘damning’ Ofsted report even before she had had the chance to review the report.

Whilst we could lecture on the do’s and don’ts of a fair dismissal this is simply not appropriate (and this must be the feeling from many quarters involved in this lengthy and costly litigation). Let us not lose sight of the fact that this case involved a child’s death in the most hideous of circumstances at a time when he had been visited 60 times in the 8 months before he died.