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ERIC Number: ED502357
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2008-May
Pages: 129
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 36
ISBN: ISBN-978-1-9053-1489-8
ISSN: N/A
Evaluating the Early Impact of Integrated Children's Services. Round 1 Final Report
Lord, Pippa; Kinder, Kay; Wilkin, Anne; Atkinson, Mary; Harland, Jennie
National Foundation for Educational Research
The focus of the Local Authorities Research Consortium's (LARC's) first year was to identify the early impact of integrated children's services and the features that promote or hinder success in improving outcomes for children and young people. The research operated in varied localities within the 14 participating Local Authorities (LAs), with one locality being chosen as the focus within each LA. (The term "locality" was understood to mean a sub-area within an authority which had some meaning for the LA and in which frontline children's services teams operated.) The research focused on three key groups of children and young people for whom integrated children's services might particularly make a difference. These groups were: (1) looked-after children (LAC); (2) children and young people with autistic spectrum disorder (ASD); and (3) young people with over 20 per cent absence from school at key stage 3. LAs were asked to select individual cases for each key group whose support exemplified some element of integration. There were several stages to the research, which was designed so that the work could be shared with a view to increasing capacity in local authorities. Therefore, LA staff also undertook data collection alongside National Foundation for Educational Research (NFER) research staff. Each LA had an NFER link researcher and there was a designated LARC key contact in each authority. The project was designed to use a largely qualitative approach, capturing views on early impact from DCSs, service managers and practitioners. In addition, interviews with parents/carers and young people themselves shed light on their views of the support they were receiving. The researchers collated and analysed these different perspectives, taking into account the unique context of each LA. In essence, therefore, the study provides a unique picture of the perceptions of local managers and practitioners--and of some groups of children, young people and families--on integrated working, some four years on from Every Child Matters (HM Treasury, 2003). Their views reflect some of the findings elsewhere in the literature (such as accessibility and acceptability of services, services' greater efficiency and better information sharing between professionals). Whilst it is thought that these service changes will directly affect users, it is notable in the literature that there is, as yet, limited evidence on outcomes of integrating children's services for service users (Robinson et al., 2008). Appended are: (1) Thumbnail outlines of the 14 LAs; (2) About the study; and (3) Barriers and enablers of integrated working: A Summary of the literature. A glossary of terms from the literature relating to multi-agency activity is also included. [For related Summary Report, see ED502396.]
National Foundation for Educational Research. The Mere, Upton Park, Slough, Berkshire, SL1 2DQ, UK. Tel: +44-1753-574123; Fax: +44-1753-637280; e-mail: enquiries@nfer.ac.uk; Web site: http://www.nfer.ac.uk
Publication Type: Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: National Foundation for Educational Research
Identifiers - Location: United Kingdom