Devon’s children’s centres come under review

14:38 04 April 2014

Archant

Children’s centres across Devon could surrender universal care in favour of focusing on those in greatest need as the contracts come under review.

The county council is looking to cut £110million from its budget over the next three years, and cabinet will discuss the options on Wednesday,

Officers recommend focusing on the most vulnerable families, which they should enable their earlier identification, and may reduce the number of children going into care.

But they warn that universal access is often a ‘gateway’ for those vulnerable families to receive targeted help and cutting it could limit access.

The authority currently spends £8.6million commissioning the service but is looking at how to make savings as the contracts come up to tender.

It currently has 43 individual contracts, but a reduced budget would make some of the smaller centres unviable.

Officers recommend reducing the number to around eight contracts, based on district council boundaries, which builds on the current position.

The authority is also looking at co-location of children’s centres with other DCC-provided services, but maintaining its buildings where there is a high density of need – although this was undefined in the preliminary report.

The plans are set to go to consultation with key stakeholders before the contracts go to tender later this year.

Children’s centres are the council’s key delivery mechanism for meeting its statutory duties with regards to child development, school readiness, parenting aspirations and family health.

1 comment

Other News Stories

Calvin Marchant, with his sons Dominic and Floyd

No words can adequately express how much a father and shopkeeper will be missed by his family, customers and the community throughout Sidmouth.

Read more
Yesterday, 06:17
Naomi Thomas of the weddding wishing well foundation recieves a cheque from Fields. Ref shs 1725-05-14TI. Picture: Terry Ife

Fields of Sidmouth celebrated the work of its staff and chose its charity of the year at the annual ‘Faftas’ award ceremony this week.

Read more
Fri, 16:30
Sidmouth Police Station in Woolcombe Lane

Government cuts have forced police chiefs to consider selling off properties to keep 3,000 officers on the beat – but there is ‘no foreseeable risk’ to Sidmouth’s station.

Read more
Fri, 16:00
Icy roads

Devon County Council’s highways teams are geared up to respond to whatever the weather throws at the county this weekend.

Read more

Local Weather

Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 3°C

min temp: -0°C

Most Read News

Family notices
Advertise in the paper
Submit a Story
Submit a Story
Buy Photos
Competitions
iwitness24
Facebook
Twitter
Google Plus Page
Family Notices 24

Digital Edition

Image
Read the Sidmouth Herald e-edition today E-edition

Devon's trusted business finder