As the study focuses on social services authorities it is likely to be of most interest to them, but it is a good tool for anyone with responsibility for outcomes for children where initial assessment has to underpin subsequent action. With each chapter summarised at some length and a commendably clear layout, this publication is hefty but straightforward to use. It has a full and intelligible account of the research base and process to assist the reader with evaluation of the author's findings.
Assessing Children's Needs is well laid out and accessible to a wide audience with different information requirements and levels of interest... I would particularly recommend this book to elected members and senior managers from health, education and social services with responsibility for taking forward the integration agenda in children's services.
This book is a detailed report of the research undertaken by the Department of Health in 24 local authorities, London boroughs and unitary authorities to examine the effectiveness of this project in achieving these objectives, and to gauge the impact of the framework on the work of the practitioners.
The research is multidimensional in taking on board the views of those managing the assessment and those being assessed. It shows the complexity of introducing new frameworks and the depth of training that is needed to ensure that the ethos underpinning the assessment is appropriate and that there is not a disproportionate focus on form filling. This is a book to study not skim! My brief review only covers a fraction of the detail that is contained in the text... The book is worthy of more study and will be important to look very carefully at the lessons from this study... As we move towards using a nationally agreed and more detailed framework for the assessment of the needs and circumstances of children.
Trainers working with staff and managers who apply the Assessment Framework when working with children and families, should be able to find much relevant material in this study-based publication.