All local authorities in England will be operating databases with information on children in their area by the end of 2008, the government announced last week.
It will cost £224m to set up the indexes over the next three years and operating costs are estimated at £41m a year.
The government also announced it would talk to children, young people and families to address any of their concerns about the indexes. Trials for the indexes, which involved checking the validity of government departments’ data on children with those of other departments and local authorities, are now complete.
A consultation on regulations for indexes will be launched soon and an implementation toolkit for councils will be available next month.