Archives for October 9th, 2001

PROBATION OFFICER TRAINING GETS QUALITY APPROVAL

Headlines, PublicNet: 9 October, 2001

The professional training programme for probation officers launched in 1998 has been given a seal of approval following a quality assurance exercise. The assessment panel set up by the Community Justice National Training Organisation reviewed the Diploma in Probation Studies, which is a qualification in work with offenders and leads to an academic degree.The Diploma takes two years to complete and the first graduates completed the programme in autumn 2000. It combines Community Justice Work with Offending Behaviour and a degree in probation studies. The programme recruited almost 300 trainees in each of its first two years and has expanded to over 1000 in the current year.
The quality assurance team found that 85% of the first group of trainees had successfully completed both parts of the programme. Indications are that about 14% of this group will graduate with first class honours.

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NEW THREAT TO PUBLIC SPENDING PROGRAMME

Headlines, PublicNet: 9 October, 2001

The failure of UK hospitals to demonstrate improved performance from increased investment will put pressure on Chancellor Gordon Brown to scale back the public spending programme as an alternative to increasing taxation. The budget surplus is shrinking as a result of foot and mouth costs, higher defence spending, increased security demands and slower growth in the economy.Figures published by the Department of Health show that despite higher investment from April 2000 and a further 6% boost to funding from April 2001, hospital activity in on a plateau. Waiting list numbers were some 2000 higher in August 2001 than in the same month in 2000. The increased number on the waiting lists broadly matches the overall increase in demand. An explanation put forward by Ministers is that the figures reflect the government’s decision to focus on waiting times rather than waiting lists.

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