January 2011



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 Nottingham City Centre

HUNDREDS of Notts County Council staff will learn today their jobs are at risk as the authority strives to save millions of pounds.

Staff in the children and young people’s services department found out jobs were at risk earlier this year after the authority revealed plans to cut a total of 3,000 posts.

The department has been told it needs to lose 400 staff from 27 different service areas. Today the staff will find out how many jobs will go from each area.

The job cuts will save £22m over four years.

However, £18m of this needs to be ploughed into children’s social care to cope with a 59 per cent rise in the number of cases referred to the service in just one year.

But this means there have to be cuts in other areas such as the youth offending service, health promotion for young people and support for children with special educational needs.

Councillor Philip Owen, cabinet member for children and young people, said: “This is an opportunity for us to reshape our services and reinvest significant resources to where they are needed most. Difficult decisions need to be made to find the necessary savings.

“Children and young people are a priority for the county council so almost 60 per cent of the department’s savings will be reinvested in crucial services over the next four years.”

He added: “We have set out a range of proposals which ensure greater value for money and help protect vulnerable children at risk by allocating more money for children’s social services and foster care.”

After the cuts, the council is set to deliver only services it is legally bound to in some areas.

It plans to save £3.16m on support for children with special educational needs and disabilities (SEND).

The equivalent of 56.6 full time equivalent posts will be cut and the council acknowledges there will be less support for these children in schools.

But it says it already spends more than the national average per pupil with SEND and will be able to offer more help to children with autism and deafness.

Anthony May, director of children and young people’s services, said: “We have relatively few special schools as we believed the best place for children is in mainstream schools.”

He said this meant Notts schools were well placed to deal with children with special needs and so could cope with a lower level of support.

The council is set to scrap health promotion for young people almost entirely.

Read in Full:  http://www.thisisnottingham.co.uk/news/Notts-County-Council-unveils-cost-cutting-children-young-people-s-services/article-2745668-detail/article.html

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