Stockton-on-Tees Borough Council

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Cabinet Decision: 17th February 2011
Title of Item/Report
Efficiency, Improvement and Transformation - Review of Integrated Youth Support Service: Connexions, Targeted Youth Support and Preventions
Record of the Decision
Cabinet considered a report that presented the findings of the EIT Task and Finish review of Integrated Youth Support Service (Connexions, Targeted Youth Support and Preventions).

The review included Information, Advice, Guidance and related support services funded through Connexions budget. The review also included targeted services core funded through Youth Service and not included in the CYP Youth Review of Universal services, and Preventions activity funded through a combination of Youth Justice Board (YJB) and Positive Activities for Young People (PAYP) grants.

The overall aims of the review were:

To review the effectiveness of the service structure and delivery model of these services to young people, taking account of the emerging policy direction at a national level.
To identify possible options for the way in which the service was delivered.

Cabinet noted that the services within this review, namely Connexions, Targeted Youth Support and Preventions were key front line services for young people enabling and supporting them to make the most of their potential and raising aspirations. The services were preventative in nature benefiting both local communities and the local economy. The services were well managed and high performing with a high level of customer satisfaction.

In considering the options for this review it was recognised that significant changes had already been made in order to align services into a coherent and co-ordinated youth support service, including universal youth service and Youth Offending Service. Recent structural changes were already evidencing significant outcomes in terms of the impact on young people and their families.

However, given emerging Government policy and the financial limitations arising from the CSR and Early Intervention Grant announcements further development was needed on the youth agenda in terms of delivering on outcomes and cost -effectiveness.

To that end, it was recommended that the services within the review be re-structured to meet an agreed savings target whilst fulfilling key priorities.

It was also important that future service developments built upon the excellent existing partnership arrangements with the voluntary and community sector, including commissioning and small grants awards.

The restructure of these services would entail losing a number of posts and some redundancies were likely. However by pooling resources from the Youth Review with the allocated funding for young people's services from the Early Intervention Grant it was anticipated that efficiencies and reducing duplication would minimise compulsory redundancies as far as possible. In addition a full review of the options for staff terms and conditions will contribute to potential savings.

RESOLVED that:-

1. delegated authority be given to the Corporate Director for Children, Education and Social Care, in consultation with the Cabinet Member for Children and Young People, to re-structure the Integrated Youth Support Service as part of the wider EIT review of Early Intervention Grant services with an agreed level of annual savings to be determined.

2. given the alignment and shared priorities with the Universal Youth Service, the restructure of these services take account of the outcome of the CYP Select Committee Youth Review including the estimated annual savings of 210,000 from that review.

The revised structure would fulfil a number of key priorities around services for young people:

Delivery of Universal Youth Service (via recommendations of the Youth Review).
Delivery of Targeted Youth Support to reduce risk taking behaviour preventing Anti Social Behaviour, Offending, Substance Misuse and Teenage Pregnancy and contributing to reducing NEETs (Not in Education, Employment and Training). This will include engaging vulnerable young people in Positive Activities.
Tracking and monitoring of young people from leaving school to age 18 (19 for vulnerable groups).
A targeted support service to enable all young people including those in vulnerable groups (up to age 25 for those with LDD) to engage and participate in Education, Employment and Training, and support the achievement of Raising the Participation Age (to include Information, Advice and Guidance approaches for Tier 1 and Tier 2 clients).
To encourage more young people to be involved in volunteering, citizenship and participation activities.

3. officers pursue opportunities, where appropriate and subject to funding, for further collaboration with the voluntary and community sector and private sector in providing services, including consideration of commissioning opportunities.

4. transitional arrangements are made for Careers Advice and Guidance to ensure that the Local Authority's statutory responsibility is delivered until that responsibility passes to schools from 2012.
Reasons for the Decision
To ensure that the Councils' Integrated Youth Support Service is delivering high quality, value for money services.
Alternative Options Considered and Rejected
None
Declared (Cabinet Member) Conflicts of Interest
None
Details of any Dispensations
Not applicable
Date and Time by which Call In must be executed
Midnight on 25 February 2011
Attachment

Date of Publication: 21 February 2011


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