Case studies

Case studies are drawn from across different Children’s Trusts to provide you with practical examples of how effective commissioning benefits children. The case studies reflect current good practice based on real situations and cover different service areas, geographical areas, levels of commissioning and types of problem.

Please contact us to suggest a case study for inclusion on this site.


Browse by theme

Click on one of the themes below to take you to a list of all case studies related to that theme.


Baby smiling Schools                           Nurses Child Health


Children at home CAMHS                             14-19


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You can use this discussion forum to rate and comment on documents in the resource bank as well as suggest documents to include. To do so, post a discussion with the name of the document and you can then rate and comment on it. We will review all feedback from this forum and consider whether documents should stay or be removed from the resource bank. Access the resource bank discussion forum.


All case studies:


  • Case study: Agreement in respect of a pooled fund, Section 10 of the Children Act 2004 (Northamptonshire) (67 KB)

    This study concerns the Agreement in respect of a pooled fund, Section 10 of the Children Act 2004 (Northamptonshire). It looks at a formal commitment to agreed ways of working and to a single pooled budget for workforce development and other activities jointly commissioned across the partnership.

  • Learning About Change from the BHLP Pilots June 2008 (90 KB)

    The budget-holding lead professional (BHLP) pilots have, over nearly two years, generated a wealth of information about change in children’s services. In this paper we draw out some of the more general messages this pilot has provided for managing – and being in the middle of – organisational change in children’s services.

  • Staged Methodology and Costed Case Studies (337 KB)

    This paper from OPM is one of a series for the learning community made up of the budget holding lead professional (BHLP) pilots and it has three main objectives:To outline some of the issues and considerations that are involved in carrying out costing exercises, To provide pilots with a methodology for carrying out cost analysis, To illustrate via case studies the cost of the BHLP service and the cost of services that might have been needed without the intervention of BHLP.

  • Organising for Effective Commissioning of School Improvement Services (Devon) (25 KB)

    Looking at the actions taken by Devon County Council to ensureits school improvement and related services were of the highest quality as it moved from being a provider to a strategic commissioner.

  • Outcome based accountability (Blackburn with Darwen) (289 KB)

    This case study shows how a Children’s Trust-wide approach to commissioning can be used to support children’s centre delivery. The first section describes the way that outcomes-based accountability (OBA) is providing a strong base for commissioning; the second describes how this approach is supporting commissioning within the Early Excellence Service.

  • Using an outcome-based approach for commissioning children’s centres (Hertfordshire) (61 KB)

    Hertfordshire County Council (HCC) has a strong culture of commissioning and the Children Schools and Families (CSF) Strategic Commissioning team has done much commissioning work as part of children’s centre development. With a target of 82 children’s centres to be established across the three phases, Hertfordshire developed a multi-agency commissioning process to identify lead agencies to deliver children’s centres. This has led to high levels of provider engagement resulting in schools, the voluntary sector, borough councils, further education colleges, and independent organisations becoming lead agencies.

  • Gloucestershire – Parent Promoted Schools (116 KB)

    Plans for a major new housing development in Gloucester and the associated emergence of a new community led the local authority to identify that a new primary school would be needed in the locality within the next two to three years. As this would mean running a school competition, Gloucestershire looked at how it could increase the diversity of providers by exploring how parents might be encouraged and supported to bid to run a new school.

  • Partnerships to Build Choice and Diversity (Bolton) (171 KB)

    Bolton Metropolitan Borough Council wanted to move to a more ambitious model of school improvement, to raise the skills of local young people. It linked this closely with its regeneration plans. It involved new partners in the school system, securing a local Asian business consortium as sponsors for an Academy, and engaging other businesses, the local university and an independent school in planning educational projects.

  • South West Peninsula - Third Sector - Commissioning Framework for Children, Young People and Families (1.79 MB)

    This framework is intended to provide a common framework for the engagement of third sector organisations across the far southwest peninsula, ensuring a similar experience for organisations in each of the Children’s Trust areas. It will support peninsula wide commissioning arrangements that are already proving effective such as Commissioning Services for Children in Care, residential and fostering placements. It will also support third sector organisations looking to expand their operations and deliver services in other Trust areas, thus supporting the development of sustainable and viable organisations in the market place.

  • Personalised budgets for children with complex needs in Yorkshire’s East Riding (149 KB)

    East Riding personalised budgets for families who had a child with complex needs, giving them control over their own budget and the commissioning of services. The Children’s Trust plays a brokerage role, having an arms-length approach to quality and compliance. This approach gave families cost effective and flexible arrangements in a safe way that has greatly improved their lives.

  • Planning a Trust Model to Bring in New Partners and Raise Local Skills Levels (N Tyneside) (45 KB)

    This document summarises the terms of reference of the North Tyneside Commission of Inquiry. It explains the make-up of the Commission, its key principles and its purpose. It is most likely to be of interest to those who wish to follow up on related documents for the North Tyneside case study.