Evaluation of regional adoption agencies highlights mixed progress, with some starting to improve various aspects of the adoption process, while others are struggling to attract staff and develop shared IT functions.
Three projects aimed at preventing children coming into care and helping those already in the system to leave are to be expanded to 20 councils. Experts call for greater emphasis on supporting families to stay together.
EIF blueprint for the future of early help recommends better co-ordination of support for vulnerable families including long-term funding, a cross-government taskforce and commitment to evidence-based practice.
Councils are to trial giving social workers money to spend on practical help for families, such as a new fridge, short break or childcare. Experts say the funding will be targeted at children most at risk of care proceedings.
Government document offers advice on working around statutory guidance that is a barrier to good practice. Some leaders say it helps identify unnecessary duties, while others warn it dilutes protections for vulnerable children.