Councils told Best Value reviews must be more zealous

Councils conducting Best Value reviews are not zealous enough in
what they want to achieve and only make small improvements,
according to a new briefing paper from the Audit Commission.

The report covering the second round of Best Value
reviews, says: “Few authorities are ambitious or urgent enough in
what they are seeking to achieve through Best Value. In many cases,
BVRs are focused on delivering incremental changes or gently
confirming the need to keep the status quo.”

The paper says the Audit Commission’s Best Value
inspectors will expect councils to “focus on fewer, better, more
strategic reviews and complete them”. It also recommended that
councils conduct Best Value reviews that “lead to demonstrable
improvements to the local community and its services”, and ensure
that “Best Value is central to delivering local priorities and the
modernisation agenda”.

The paper follows last month’s publication of the Best
Value performance indicators 2001/2002 by the department of the
environment, transport and the regions.

It includes 18 new indicators relevant to social services,
covering such areas as adoption and looked after children;
employment, education and training for care leavers; and intensive
home care.

Another step forward from








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