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Children's services

When you respond to the complexity in children’s services, outcomes can be improved – and money saved.

The challenge

Everyone wants high quality outcomes for children and young people, but achieving them is not as simple as just having the right controls and processes in place.

In the context of insufficient funds, rising demand and the acute challenges presented by the pandemic, it is more important than ever for Directors of Children’s Services and other leaders to refocus their systems on the outcomes of children and young people.

The three biggest drivers of cost and demand for children’s services are High Needs (SEND), social care demand and placement costs.  Our work has proven that it is possible to adopt a system wide approach and work with partners to better manage demand in these areas, whilst also improving outcomes. By maximising inclusion and independence, linking demand with needs and resources and pivoting towards early intervention, better outcomes can cost less.

Focus areas

Our work in children’s services has four core focus areas:

Rebalancing High Needs

Shifting the High Needs system towards earlier intervention and support, reducing new demand and stepping down unnecessary specialist provision.

Valuing Care

Triangulating needs with costs and outcomes to drive better value from placements, prevent entry into care and improve outcomes in the system.

Demand-led Redesign

Designing services and approaches to early intervention and prevention models in order to sustainably manage demand and build family resilience.

Children's Services Improvement

Enabling councils to deliver sustainable change as a result of system challenges, delivering rapid improvements as part of a long-term transformation.

Impact in Children's Services


Total currently saved by councils every year as a result our work


Children and young people have benefitted from our initiatives

Work with us

Get in touch if you’d like to discuss the challenges your organisation is facing.