The long-awaited details outlining the standards and functions of
children’s trusts have been published by the Department of Health,
a month later than originally planned.
The trusts will bring together children’s services within one
organisational structure. The prospectus outlines that at a minimum
this should involve some or all services provided by local
education authorities, social services and health.
They will help tackle a range of problems identified by local
agencies including the sharing of information between services to
identify children at risk; organising services around the needs of
children; and developing a strategic analysis of the overall needs
All trusts should appoint someone to ensure the co-ordination of
children’s services, have a clear set of objectives, a co-ordinated
assessment of need and effective information sharing systems.
The prospectus doesn’t say how many areas will pilot children’s
trusts, but the number is expected to be between 15 and 25, each
pilot receiving £60,000 per year in DoH and Department for
Education and Skills funding to assist and with releasing key staff
for planning purposes.
An objective of the pilots will be to find new ways to enlist the
community, private and voluntary sectors in providing services.