Parenting Assessments – Spend and Numbers

“I would like to know what Devon County Council’s annual expenditure on residential parenting assessments was in each of the last 10 years. I.E. in 2017,16,15,14,13,12,11,10,09,08,07.

The below table shows the net spend on residential parent and child placements for the last four financial years.  Unfortunately, the data for the earlier years isn’t easily retrievable as parent & child placement spend was not recorded separately to other types of residential spend prior to 2014/15.

Devon County Council (DCC) is, therefore, unable to provide the earlier data under Section 12 of the Freedom of Information Act 2000 – ‘Cost of Compliance’. There are circa 500 transactions per financial year, so to review each transaction individually to identify which relate to parent & child residential placements, based on an estimate of 5 minutes per transaction, would take in the region of 250 hours.  This is clearly well in excess of the 18 hours public authorities are required to spend responding to FOI requests.

Financial Year Net Spend £
2017/18           605,000
2016/17           604,000
2015/16           756,000
2014/15           299,000

I would also like to request the number of individual parental assessments commissioned by Devon County Council in each of the last 10 years.  

We can confirm that the Child and Parent Placement and Assessment Team have commissioned circa 310 assessments since June 2012; in the region of 52 per annum.  Data prior to this date is not held.

Please note, however, that not all assessments are commissioned by the Child and Parent Placement and Assessment Team.  Some are commissioned within Children’s Social Work, some via the court process with independent social workers, and there are other teams / individuals who may have been involved in commissioning assessments too.  The above figures should, therefore, only be taken as a guideline as we do not hold reliable total figures.

May I lastly request the names of the residential parenting assessment providers you use most often.”

DCC’s Parent Placement and Assessment Team’s most used providers of residential parenting assessments are as follows:-

  • Orchard House
  • Tide House – aka Inclusis
  • Richmond Lodge – (owned by Fusion)
  • Crown House – (owned by Keys)
  • Symbol – this is in Kent (specialist P&C)

Please note that sometimes placements are Court ordered and by-pass the Placement Team.