Improve life chances for children receiving help from the social care system
Create stronger incentives and mechanisms for innovation, experimentation and replication of successful new approaches
Drive better value for money across children's social care
The Programme supports individual pilots and change programmes which test or spread effective ways of supporting vulnerable children
The Programme changes conditions in the system so it is better able to innovate in future by providing the licence to test new approaches as well as by building an evidence base and sharing what works to improve outcomes for childre
Round One of the Programme (2014-16) invited applications across two focus areas where there were particular challenges in prevailing practice, and clear scope for radical innovation and change. These were:
The DfE published two papers on the above focus areas (click the areas above to view), drawing together and analysing key research evidence and practice developments.
Round Two of the Programme (2016-20) also invited applications to scale and spread successful innovations from Round One.
Round Three – the Targeted Funding Opportunity (2017-20) invited applications in four policy areas where there is a need to quickly develop and test new approaches. The four policy areas were set out in the DfE’s policy paper ‘Putting Children First‘ and are:
In June 2014, the DfE appointed the Spring Consortium as its delivery partner for the Programme. The Consortium consists of Deloitte, Mutual Ventures and Innovation Unit; three organisations with a compelling breadth and depth of skills, knowledge, insight, ideas, energy and passion for the sector.