SARAH Parker has resigned from her role as head of children's services at Dorset Council.

Ms Parker, whose official role is executive director for people - children, will step down from the position to carry out other work outside of Dorset. She will leave the council at the end of December.

"It’s been a privilege to work with the fantastic children, young people and families of Dorset. I wish them and colleagues at Dorset Council all the very best for the future," Ms Parker said.

Matt Prosser, chief executive of Dorset Council, said: "Sarah has made a huge impact on the new Dorset Council. She has brought an incredible amount of passion and energy, and is dedicated to achieving the best outcomes for children and young people.

"Although she's leaving Dorset, we are committed to delivering her legacy and putting children at the centre of our decision making. This remains a priority for Dorset Council."

In the short-term, children’s services will be led by Theresa Leavy, who will fill the statutory role of director of children’s services. She has led transformation programmes for other local authorities, including Cambridgeshire and Wiltshire, and currently supports Dorset Council with its children's services transformation programme, known as 'Blueprint for Change'.

Mr Prosser added: "Theresa Leavy has a great track record in leading children's services during times of change, including in Wiltshire - which has gone through the process of becoming a unitary council. She has a played a key role in our Blueprint for Change programme and I'm grateful that she's able to take on this leadership role while we agree the best way forward."