THE PITFALLS OF PAYING HOUSING BENEFIT TO CLAIMANTS

Features: November 30th, 2007

By Peter Kemp, Annie Irvine and Katharine Nice.

The Government plans to pay the new Local House Benefit to tenants rather than to landlords as currently. The change is designed to promote personal responsibility and empower tenants to budget for themselves, to help workless tenants to develop the skills they will need when they move into paid work and to encourage them to open bank accounts and pay their rent by standing order. The authors found that there are other undesigned outcomes just below the surface.

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IDENTIFYING THE DEMONS

Features: November 23rd, 2007

By Christine Whatford

Public concern and moral indignation about juvenile crime and disorderly behaviour has led to the demonization of some children. The author shows that this is a handy way of shifting blame for things we see around us that we don’t like, when the root of demonization is social unrest caused by poverty. She explores the way that education is closing the depravation social gap.

TACKLING LOW EDUCATIONAL ACHIEVEMENT

FeaturesHeadlines: November 16th, 2007

TACKLING LOW EDUCATIONAL ACHIEVEMENT

By Robert Cassen and Geeta Kingdon

Tens of thousands of students in England leave school every year aged 16 with no or very limited qualifications. The authors explore the most important factors that explain educational results including the propensity for disadvantaged students to attend the worse-performing schools. They set out an agenda for reducing low achievement embracing pre-school, primary schools and secondary schools.

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IN DEFENCE OF CHILDREN: THE DEMONIZED MINORITY

Features: November 9th, 2007

By Martin Narey. Barnardo’s, London Although there is overwhelming support for abolishing child poverty by 2020, current strategies will not deliver the goal. The author argues that a change is needed in the way the public, media and politicians think about poverty and their understanding of its harsh reality in the UK in 2007. The life chances of the disadvantaged could be changed, but whether the will to change is present is arguable. This article was first published in Public Management and Policy and is reproduced by permission of the Association.

GOVERNING SCHOOLS IN DISADVANTAGED AREAS

Features: November 2nd, 2007

By Charlotte Dean, Alan Dyson, Frances Gallannaugh, Andy Howes and Carlo Raffo. The governing bodies of schools in disadvantaged areas are struggling in large part because the school system has changed radically in recent decades, but questions about school governance have been an afterthought. The authors found that what is expected from governors has increased over the years, without any fundamental rethink of what they are for. They pose the question: what sort of governance do we want?

NO SUCH THING AS ‘THE POOR’

Features: October 26th, 2007

By Noel Smith and Sue Middleton. The official UK poverty rate is calculated by point-in-time surveys made at intervals and the method assumes that the same households are in poverty at later dates. Using dynamic research the authors trace changes in the circumstances of the same households over time and plot movements in and out of poverty. This approach reveals that poverty is fluid and dynamic and it embraces a broad population whose experiences of poverty are diverse.

PERCEPTIONS OF CHILDREN WITH CHALLENGING BEHAVIOUR

Features: October 19th, 2007

By Dame Denise Platt DBE Public perceptions of the needs of children are often in conflict with the perceptions of children. The public often see the need as being more about control than care. The author explores how children see their need and how they respond to the support they receive. This article was first published in Public Management and Policy and is reproduced by permission of the Association. http://www.cipfa.org.uk/pmpa/index.cfm

POVERTY AND DISADVANTAGE AMONG PRISONERS’ FAMILIES

Features: October 12th, 2007

By Rose Smith, Roger Grimshaw, Renee Romeo and Martin Knapp. The families of low earners who receive prison sentences are affected disproportionately compared to higher earning income groups. The authors explored the impact on low income families and found mainstream policies such as the New Deal for Lone Parents result in a perverse effect. They identify the issues that need to be addressed to protect the hidden and innocent victims of imprisonment, particularly the welfare of children.

CHANGING NEIGHBOURHOODS

Features: October 5th, 2007

By Marilyn Taylor, Mandy Wilson, Derrick Purdue and Pete Wilde. Many new policies to close the gap between the most disadvantaged neighbourhoods and the rest of society have been launched in the last ten years. In 2002 the Joseph Rowntree Foundation launched its Neighbourhood Programme to support community groups and organisations in 20 neighbourhoods. The authors distil the learning from programme for local councils, their partners, community organisations and for government at national and regional level.

ASSET MANAGEMENT MADE EASY

Features: September 28th, 2007

By Nigel Pressnell. Schools have invested heavily in IT equipment and infrastructure and this has brought a new challenge of managing the assets, many of which are portable. Asset management includes a number of tasks such as renewing software licences. The author describes how an IT solution has delivered effective asset management including alerts to the use of alien software.

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