The decision from the Doncaster City Council to place them in foster care in the first place has also come under fire, because this has not been the first time children under their care have met with trouble. The Doncaster Children's services were accused of being responsible for several deaths, including the suicide of 10-year-old Cameron McWilliam, and the death of 16-month old Amy Howson, whose spine was allegedly snapped by her abusive father.
Paul Hart of the Doncaster City Council released a statement about the attack. "This is a truly shocking and upsetting incident, and we are working closely with our partners to assist the investigation," he said.
Gareth Williams, director of children's services, added in a statement to ABC News: "We have today referred the case to the Doncaster Safeguarding Children's Board, where a full review will be carried out.
"Across the country, there are hundreds of children in care who will no doubt feel that this situation reflects badly on them. …This is not the case, and it is crucial that no other children suffer because of this situation."
The case has gotten a flurry of attention in the United Kingdom, because it recalls the death of 2-year old Jamie Bulger in 1993, who was killed by two 10-year old boys. After going missing for a day, his body was found at a railway line. The accused killers were allegedly trying to re-create a scene from a film they had recently seen.
Jamie's mother, Denise Fergus, said in a public statement, "This attack sent a chill down my spine. It's terrible to think there are children of 10 and 11 going around with knives."
A spokesman for the prime minister said the attack did not mean British children were becoming more violent.
"In his view, the overwhelming majority are well-behaved and have good upbringings," he said. "He would be cautious about reaching any general conclusion about what is a disturbing but singular event."
The parents of the 11-year-old victim have appealed to the media to give them space while their son recovers from his wounds. "We would like to thank all the community for their help in finding our son and for all their continued support through what is a very traumatic time," they said in a statement. "We are hoping that our son will continue to recover from his ordeal and ask that the media will continue to respect our privacy."