Youth offending teams to face three-yearly inspections

All youth offending teams in England and Wales will face a rolling programme of inspections by the probation inspectorate over the next three years, under the new comprehensive area assessment.

Youth offending will be one of only three service areas where public bodies will be inspected regardless of their performance, the others being looked-after children and child safeguarding, for which councils will be inspected every three years by Ofsted.

Under the plans, the probation inspectorate will inspect a representative sample of case files in each area to assess how well certain aspects of youth offending work are being performed.

In other areas, such as adult social care, inspections will be triggered by concerns about services in the locality in question, with better performing areas generally left alone.

The Audit Commission confirmed final details for the comprehensive area assessment yesterday.

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