Probation Circular

• • • To outline the major national issues highlighted by the self assessment exercise To enable lessons to be learned for this exercise which can inform future quality assurance arrangements To provide areas with a template incorporating some findings from the exercise relevant to completion rates REFERENCE NO: 47/2005 ISSUE DATE: 27 June 2005 IMPLEMENTATION DATE: Immediate EXPIRY DATE: June 2006 TO: Chairs of Probation Boards Chief Officers of Probation Secretaries of Probation Boards CC: Board Treasurers Regional Managers AUTHORISED BY: Martin Copsey, Head of Community Reintegration ATTACHED: Appendix 1: Report on Enhanced Community Punishment SelfAssessment Exercise Appendix 2: Performance Criteria Appendix 3: Unpaid Work Completions Template

Chief Officers are asked to bring this report to the attention of staff in Unpaid Work units and to make use of the completions template.

The self-assessment exercise provided ample evidence of the Enhanced Community Punishment scheme in the 41 areas and highlighted some excellent practice especially in: • Provision of high quality placements • Staff supervision, appraisal and training • Portfolio preparation • Quality Assurance of schemes by Quality Assurance Managers The main areas for improvement were: • Increase in number of placements which contribute directly to community safety • Improvement in targeting and liaison with sentencers to reduce the number of offenders with a low likelihood of reconviction • Increase in throughput by ensuring offenders begin orders within the timescale and work consistently at the rate prescribed by National Standards • Consistent supervision/sentence planning and review • Equitable access by offenders to skills learning. • Good liaison in multi requirement orders


Janet Corcoran, 214 Horseferry House, Tel: 020 7217 8877 Email:

National Probation Directorate
Horseferry House, Dean Ryle Street, London, SW1P 2AW

Although the exercise was successfully completed and many areas fed back that they had found it a helpful process, there are a number of recommendations for future quality assurance of Unpaid Work: • Performance Standards specific to Unpaid Work should be published in advance of the exercise and piloted in a number of areas prior to national rollout. • A new framework should focus on a smaller number of criteria to make the exercise more manageable and ensure it does not impede service delivery. • A clear and robust scoring mechanism should be incorporated in a new framework to enable NPD and areas to make firmer judgements about performance and to measure improvement.

PC47/2005 – Report on Enhanced Community Punishment Self-Assessment Exercise: November – March 2004/05


Report on Enhanced Community Punishment Self Assessment Exercise November – March 2004/5 1. Introduction: The Self-Assessment exercise provided ample evidence of the successful implementation of the Enhanced Community Punishment (ECP) scheme across England and Wales. It was clear that areas had been successful in retaining a focus on this area of work in the period following implementation, a creditable achievement in the face of so many other competing demands. Area staff entered into the exercise with commendable commitment and demonstrated an impressive level of service and a strong commitment to the principles which underlie the ECP scheme. 2. Process: The ECP self-assessment framework was introduced to areas through Probation Circular 31/2004: ‘Quality Management of Enhanced Community Punishment’ in June 2004. This contained the self assessment guidance and checklist to be used by areas and laid out a timescale for the completion of the process. This fell into three parts: • July-September 2004: Five one day briefing events to be held for area staff to provide further detail and to give the opportunity for questions to be raised and suggestions to be made whilst there was still time to influence the exercise. October-December 2004: Each area to carry out an exercise to identify available evidence in relation to the performance criteria. It was not necessary for areas to physically collect the evidence but simply to cite its availability and be ready to produce it for verification if required during the next phase of the process. A case file reading form was provided for areas to use for a prescribed number of cases and the results of this were used as evidence in relation to a number of criteria. January-March 2005: Nine Regional Validation Events to be held to consider the evidence and the scoring.

Forty one areas completed the exercise. It was originally envisaged that the process would be led by the Quality Systems Manager. However, due to a change in role this was not possible and the responsibility for this passed to the Community Reintegration team at NPD. This represented a reduction in the total resource available to be invested in the exercise by NPD. Additionally, it was originally intended that the Inspectorate would attend all events but it was only possible for them to attend four of the nine events. They provided valuable experience, guidance and advice 3. Issues raised: At the Regional Validation Events, areas were asked to identify a number of issues and action points to be addressed: • As an area • Within the region 1


Some of the action points related to remedying gaps which had been identified by the exercise, whereas others were identified as means of developing still further practice which was already of a high standard. There were broad similarities between the issues raised at the different events and it was possible to identify a number of common themes. Area Actions: • Meet demanding completion targets: It was recognised that this process began in court and that improved dialogue with sentencers was necessary in order to ensure that sufficient orders were made to meet targets, but that the numbers did not become so excessive that local operational arrangements were unable to manage these successfully. A number of area identified the importance of persuading courts to make short orders, wherever this was appropriate so that most offenders could complete their orders and move off the caseload as quickly as possible. An issue of critical importance is the issue of reducing the occasions on which offenders are not instructed to work in line with National Standards. Many areas, especially those with high employment rates, report difficulties in recruiting supervisors and, on occasion, resort to not working offenders each week because of unanticipated supervisor absence. Most areas where this was a problem were acutely aware of it and of the damaging effect on staff morale. A number of actions were identified with the potential to improve this situation, including more determined and imaginative approaches to recruitment, more flexible deployment of supervisors across areas, more evening placements to reduce the demand for weekend work and also more rigorous checking of offenders’ employment status so that weekend work could be restricted to those who genuinely had no alternative. The issue of improving compliance was raised in a variety of forms. A number of areas identified a particular problem within Community Punishment Units in that whilst the introduction of ECP had enhanced the role of the supervisor, that of case manager was sometimes perceived to have declined and to involve little contact with offenders. The approach to enforcement had therefore become largely administrative with case mangers seeing themselves as having limited opportunities to encourage and motivate offenders. Some areas considered that if this group of staff retained more face to face contact with offenders, there would be a beneficial effect on compliance. Whilst the structure of Unpaid Work Units will be affected by the introduction of Offender Management, this is an important lesson to bear in mind. • Improve Supervision/Sentence Planning: This emerged as a weakness in many areas. Within the new arrangements for Unpaid Work it is unnecessary to have anything other than standard 2

objectives for offenders at low likelihood of reconviction. However, it is clear that areas recognise the importance of clear and measurable objectives, including, where appropriate, Vocational Skills Learning. It will be even more important to improve practice in this area with the introduction of the multi requirement community order. Increase the number of projects which contribute to Community Safety: Whilst some areas had good relationships with CDRPs, others recognised the need to strengthen their liaison arrangements. Inconsistencies emerged across the country as to how community safety was defined and it was generally felt that there should be an agreed national definition. Allied to this issue was the need to improve service delivery to minority groups. Some areas did have good liaison with local faith groups and those representing the black minority ethnic population. Some areas raised the possibility of enhancing the role of the placement manager by equipping them to liaise with community groups and giving them a broader community safety role.. Ensure that Unpaid Work retains the quality improvements brought about by ECP: There was widespread concern that the move to Unpaid Work might place quality in jeopardy and many areas took the view that self-assessment should be a continuing process rather than a discrete exercise, as this had been. Continue to develop appropriate vocational skills and basic skills provision: It was widely recognised that where this was available, it considerably enhanced the purpose of the order to the offender. Information from the Offender Questionnaire supported this view. There are also indications that involvement in this activity boosts compliance rates. Areas recognised the importance of having sustainable schemes and of boosting take up rates amongst the relevant target group. Some areas advocated the use of contracts with offenders and others identified the need to make this provision more visible. More systematic use of the Offender Questionnaire: Where areas did use and analyse the information from this tool, it was recognised as providing useful management information. Offenders often gave clear pointers, for example, to aspects of the scheme which helped them to complete their order, such as consistency of supervisor and work placement and provision of skills learning

Regional Actions: • More systematic sharing of good practice: Regional co-operation was widely valued and the view was expressed by some that this opportunity should be provided to practitioners as well as managers. It was seen as a means of ensuring quality and of introducing good standardised practice in sentence planning etc by adopting the best models in the region. The sharing of problems,


ideas, paperwork, developmental work, costings, recruitment practices etc were all seen to have value. • Regional Unpaid Work conferences: East Midlands held a conference in June and some other regions suggested that this would help Unpaid Work to retain a high profile in their areas. Ensuring Quality: A continuing theme throughout the discussions at the events was the concern of areas that the introduction of Unpaid Work would lead to the loss of the gains in quality which the introduction of ECP had been seen to bring about. Whilst areas recognised the need for some change to enable areas to deal with the large number of orders made there seemed to be a consensus that a return to what is regarded as ‘straight Community Punishment’ for all offenders would be a retrograde step. Regional collaboration was regarded as a means towards ensuring that Unpaid Work remain developmental and progress on quality is sustained. Analysis of Offender Questionnaires. This was widely regarded as a useful activity and it was clear that some areas were making more use of its potential to provide local management information than were others. Regional analysis and pooling of results was seen to have value.


Diversity: This was seen as an issue which required creative and innovative thinking. Some areas had made more progress towards ensuring that placements met the needs of all sectors of the community than had others. It was considered that practice could be moved on regionally. In practical terms where many areas have a wide variety of languages spoken, the sharing of information about interpreter services was regarded as useful.

National Actions: There were a range of suggestions for NPD actions, almost all of which fell broadly into the following categories: • The preparation of a self-assessment scheme to be used in relation to Unpaid Work which incorporates the lessons from this experience. There was a consensus that self-assessment is an essential underpinning of the scheme and one area described the importance of : ‘ Establishing a process whereby realistic self-assessment becomes a normal and everyday part of assuring quality at all levels of the organisation, creating a culture of quality assurance’. It was also seen as a means of defending high quality service delivery in a climate of contestability and an opportunity for areas to provide tangible proof that they are delivering to these standards. However, there was a message that NPD should take account of issues such as rurality in setting standards and targets. In setting the frequency of such exercises, NPD should also recognise that time taken carrying out self-assessment exercises is time which cannot be spent on service delivery. • Greater clarity on the Offender Management/Interventions split and the implications of this for Unpaid Work. The future of the role of the Quality Assurance Manager was seen as especially problematic. Unsurprisingly, this concern took high priority at all events, although it was recognised that this could only be done in the light of broader decisions about the constitution of the service. A national definition of Community Safety and guidance on what type of project can be seen to make a valid contribution to this. Many areas welcomed the prominence of the Civil Renewal agenda and the move to ensure that areas engage with communities in identifying and prioritising projects. There was concern that the good work already undertaken in many areas should be recognised and inform national thinking on this issue. Improved communication between the centre and areas on Unpaid Work issues, especially with operational managers. It was felt that not all communication should go through senior managers. 5

Alongside this should be improved consultation with staff delivering on the ground. • Greater clarity on the implications of the Criminal Justice Act for Guided Skills Learning and the appropriate use of the ETE activity requirement. Since these events, guidance has been issued which will be updated as the operation of Unpaid Work gets underway.

4. Findings: This section gives the main headline findings for each of the six sections. A summary cannot do full justice to the wealth of detail and practice examples which the self-assessment exercise produced but these were discussed in depth at each of the Regional Validation Events. • Section A: Committed Leadership and Supportive Management: Most areas were able to provide sufficient evidence to indicate that ECP schemes were well managed by both senior and operational managers. The evidence of course dated from the period immediately following implementation when all areas gave a high profile to ECP. In future exercises, it will be important to measure whether there is an equally explicit ownership of Unpaid Work. A number of areas surpassed scheme requirements and national guidance in the information provided to sentencers, some updating them regularly on the details of wok projects. This will take on even greater importance in the context of increasing the visibility of Unpaid Work. The varying scores in A3 indicated an inconsistent approach to sentencer surveys, some areas administering them regularly, others acknowledging that they had continued to use a format which predated ECP. • Section B: Scheme Management Responsibilities: Scores were generally high on B1-4 with most areas scoring the maximum, indicating that they had the basic systems in place for the safe and effective delivery of the scheme and monitoring of offender attendance. Many areas were more self-critical in regard to B5, 6 and 7, dealing with issues of cancellation and disruption of sessions. It was clear that most, though not all areas, were not always able to offer all offenders the minimum of five hours each week for the duration of the order. Areas were clearly putting measures into place to deal with this e.g. a more rigorous approach to supervisor recruitment; introduction of weekend working to take the pressure off weekends; undertaking seasonal planning to provide wet weather placements. The use of Assessment Centres and Job Descriptions was consistent. Most staff were fully trained after appointment although there were clear concerns that this provision might not always be available. Many areas also reported good practices in training staff


in supporting skills – First Aid and Motivational Interviewing frequently occurring. The completion of Portfolios did not take place in some areas, a casualty of operational pressures. Many though, had commendable portfolio practice, some routinely incorporating this as an objective in the appraisals of Quality Assurance Managers. A number of areas e.g. Wales (all four areas) and Teesside mentioned award ceremonies. Arrangements for appraisal indicated good practice which could be more systematic in some areas. • Section C: Quality Assurance Management: Most supervision practice appeared adequate although there were a small minority of areas who did not offer regular supervision to supervisors. Sometimes the process was weakened because audio and video monitoring systems were not in place or were not consistently linked with supervision of the individual. Targeting was a difficult area with many areas reporting a high percentage of offenders with low OGRS scores. Whilst there seemed to be general recognition of the value of the Quality Assurance arrangements assessed in this section, some areas cited the combination of high workload and insufficient staff as a reason why they could not be consistently applied. • Section D: Quality of Delivery: Guided Skills Learning provision was inconsistent and patchy. A small minority had no provision at all. Others had provision but not across the whole area. The nature and number of awards achieved varied widely. This should not be allowed to obscure some very good practice, some of which will be identified in the forthcoming NIACE ‘Directory of Promising Practice’. However, it is clear that GSL has not become a truly national scheme and, through the course of its development as part of the CJA sentencing framework, it will be important to monitor the equity of the opportunities offered to offenders. The failure to make GSL universally available does not, in most cases reflect badly on areas many of whom have made considerable efforts to establish schemes but have experienced difficulties in attracting funding for these. The vast majority of areas had substantial evidence to demonstrate their provision of high quality placements with very few in active use which scored poorly according to ECP Placement Quality Standards. Where areas used as evidence the information they had provided for the NPD Placement Provider survey, it reflects creditably on them with high levels of satisfaction reported. Areas took very seriously the need to incorporate diversity into their schemes and there was a good deal of progress towards this through local networks


Section E: Integrated Case Management

Many areas scored poorly on E1, relating to Supervision Planning. This appears to stem from incomplete OASys coverage. Some areas e.g. Cambridge and Thames Valley use standard ECP related objectives. Many areas however did not prepare Supervision plans at all or did not review them, although there was a widespread recognition that improvement in this aspect of work would be beneficial, especially in encouraging and monitoring GSL take up. Effective liaison in CPRO cases was also scored low by many areas. Where there were Supervision Plans, the assessments of the two elements of the order were often prepared separately and did not reflect an integrated approach. A number of areas suggested that CPRO training needs should be better integrated in ECP training and this will be addressed in the design of the training to support Unpaid Work. • Section F: Outcomes: It was anticipated that areas would not score very highly on this in the initial round of self-assessment since they would not routinely be collecting the relevant information. Most areas did however track down the evidence required to score well in a number of sections. Many were able to cite the percentage of hours worked which contributed to Community Safety through internal monitoring though discussions suggested that they were working to various interpretations of this. This highlighted the need for common definitions, an issue which was specified as an action point for NPD. Good evidence was provided about the more flexible use of staff across areas and across roles. The Offender Questionnaire was used systematically by most areas and results suggested that the scheme was perceived as beneficial. There were indications that the scheme boosted compliance levels . 5. Evaluation of the Process and Recommendations for Future SelfAssessment Exercises: Overall Comments: The exercise took place largely in accordance with the timescale outlined in PC31/2004. There were some minor exceptions to this where areas sought a brief extension because of other pressures such as HMIP inspections but the process was completed, as planned, by the end of March. The self–assessment exercise took place during a time of considerable change. The Criminal Justice Act 2003, and the implementation of Community Orders from April 2005 altered the legislative framework and Unpaid Work replaced Community Punishment. The need to give areas greater flexibility in managing workloads resulted in NPD


guidance with the implication that the ECP scheme need no longer be universally applied. The introduction of the offender management framework potentially changed the shape of the delivery of Unpaid Work. Whilst areas showed remarkable tenacity in adhering to the selfassessment method, it was clear that the relevance of this specific tool to the future of Unpaid Work was in doubt. Briefing Events: The briefing events were well attended with participants from all but one of the probation areas. They generated considerable discussion and debate and participants showed a commendable willingness to engage with the process. Criticism was constructive and clearly offered in a spirit of wishing to improve the exercise. It was possible to incorporate many of the suggestions in the final version of the framework and this did appear to enhance areas’ commitment to and ownership of the activity. Further guidance, which dealt with issues which had emerged at the Briefing Events, was issued in late September. Feedback suggested that participants did find it a good use of their time to engage with the material in advance of the exercise. Area Self–Assessment exercises: The completed checklists evidence the fact that areas approached this exercise with rigour. Many report investing a considerable amount of time in both planning and carrying out the assessment in order to make it a meaningful activity. Many areas acknowledged the usefulness of the exercise in enabling them to gain a clear picture of their ECP operation and to plan for the future, but most argued that the amount of time and resource which it took could have been reduced if the assessment tool had been more concise and more closely fitted to the purposes of ECP. There would be great value in any further self-assessment tool being based in published Performance Standards which have been developed specifically for use with Unpaid Work activity and being piloted in one or two areas before being rolled out nationally. Regional Validation Events: These were well attended with representatives from all 41 areas who had undertaken the exercise. Feedback sheets were completed which made a valuable contribution to developing the format of the event to reflect what other regions had found useful. Participants showed familiarity with their evidence and had clearly translated the findings from the exercise into action points. A decision was made to depart from the format of the accredited programme events and not to rerun a file reading exercise. It was thought that it would be more useful for participants to reflect on the exercises and to refine future plans for action. The events were certainly invaluable for NPD staff as a means of developing a fuller picture of ECP, eighteen months after implementation and engaging with current issues. Many participants


commented that they found it very useful to meet as a region and to share the detail of practice. Where there is regional co-operation, it is often at senior management level and these events suggested that staff at all levels would benefit from regional fora. Some areas felt that they had already done the work required to identify their areas of strength and areas for improvement and to plan for the future. Other areas found it useful to have the time to focus on this. Whilst, overall, these events seemed useful and were valued by participants, there were flaws in the design of the day. It was recognised that the scoring system had not been sufficiently robust for a meaningful validation exercise to take place. Participants were all concerned with the changes which were taking place in Unpaid Work and an exclusive concentration on practice as it had been some months earlier seemed inappropriately constraining. The focus of the day was therefore sometimes unclear – was this a validation or was it an exercise in future planning? This seemed in part to be a result of faults in the assessment tool and in part an effect of the unusual and unsettling time in which this exercise was being conducted. It is to the credit of area representatives that they dealt with this ambivalence and entered into constructive dialogue with each other and with NPD. Recommendations: • Briefing Events appear to be a useful way of helping areas to engage with the process. It is important that these should be scheduled sufficiently in advance of the self-assessment so that issues can be clarified and suggestions incorporated in the process. • Performance Standards, specific to the delivery of Unpaid Work, should be published in advance of the exercise. Whilst it would be desirable for them to be in a format consistent with those used for the Quality Management of other interventions, it is most important that the content is designed to reflect Unpaid Work and not simply adapted from other frameworks. It would be helpful to pilot these in a few areas before proceeding to national rollout. The delivery of Unpaid Work is a complex activity and this will inevitably be reflected in its Performance Standards. However, in designing a new framework, it will be important to identify and focus on the critical criteria in order to make the exercise more manageable and ensure that it does not impede service delivery. A new framework will require a clear and robust scoring mechanism which will enable NPD and areas to make firmer judgements about performance and to measure improvement. The role of the Regional What Works Managers has been invaluable throughout this process and they were successful in promoting a high level of ownership of the self-assessment process. In the light of recent changes to their role, it will be necessary for NPD to


identify what support is available to deliver a future self-assessment exercise. • Regional Validation Events appear to have been a useful way for areas to pool their findings and share practice as well as to promote dialogue with NPD. It will be important however, if the decision is made to hold similar events in the future, for there to be greater clarity about their structure and their purpose.


Performance Criteria
A: Committed Leadership & Supportive Management
A1: Committed Leadership (Mandatory): The senior management of the area should be openly and explicitly committed to the proper running of the scheme through policy and public statements. A2: Management Structure (Important): Effective line management structures exist for the proper operation of the scheme, integrating this within case management structures. Adequate time should be set aside for the effective management of the scheme. A3: Effective communication with sentencers resulting in Sentencer Satisfaction (Important): There is high quality, proactive communication with local sentencers and clerks to the justices about the scheme, including written information. As a result sentencers have a good understanding of the scheme and are confident in the outcomes of the scheme.

B: Scheme Management Responsibilities
B1: Resources and facilities for pre-placement work sessions (Important): Suitable resources and facilities to be available, consistent with the Estates Standards Manual, to enable the delivery of each element of the scheme. B2: Resources and facilities for work placements (Mandatory): Provisions of good quality projects meeting the requirements of Placement Quality Standards (PQS), with a safe working environment for staff, offenders and third parties suitable for the delivery of the relevant elements of the scheme. B3: Provision of information about the scheme (Important): There should be a set of leaflets for offenders, sentencers and staff clearly describing the scheme and its requirements. B4: Managing attendance (Mandatory): Offender attendance and absence are managed to achieve the required National Performance Management target for offender completions. Attendance is managed to achieve coherent delivery with full impact for all undertaking the scheme. B5: Avoidance of cancellation or disruption to lessons (Important): Sessions are not cancelled or disrupted owing to offender crises, high workload or other pressures, and arrangements exist to deal with crises outside of the scheme. B6: Timeliness (Important): All offenders commence the scheme within the specified period. For CPO’s the timing may be different on occasions to permit other work to be completed, e.g. a programme of drug detoxification, completion of accredited programme. Details are given in the scheme’s guidance on integrated case management and this sequencing must be followed. B7: Size of work parties (Mandatory): For group placements, the optimum group size is 6 offenders to one supervisor. B8: Staff selection (Mandatory): A staff selection procedure meeting the requirements of the scheme’s manual is in place and only staff meeting the defined criteria are selected to deliver it. B9: Staff roles and competencies (Important): Differences in roles between grades or posts are reflected in job descriptions. A defined set of competencies exist for each staff role involved in the scheme, using those specified in the core manual for the scheme. B10: Training arrangements for new staff (Mandatory): Training courses are available for all roles involved in delivering the scheme. The training delivered conforms to the EPC training manual. All staff are required to undertake this training before delivering the scheme. B11: Staff knowledge of the theory, concepts and methods used in this scheme (Mandatory): All relevant staff have a knowledge of the scheme theory, evidence, objectives and methods used sufficient for the effect delivery of the scheme. B12: Staff appraisal (Important): All members of staff involved with the scheme have their competence to perform their assigned role assessed annually through the appraisal process. Staff whose performance is assessed as below the acceptable standard but making progress should be given further training and other assistance to improve their performance and a date

set for review. Staff who are not making progress in achieving the required standard of performance should not take any further part in running the scheme. B14: Implementation of monitoring and evaluation design (Mandatory): Interview and observation show that monitoring and evaluation arrangements are working as intended and are understood and supported by all members of staff involved. This should include both input and feedback of data to managers and practitioners at local level.

C: Quality Assurance Management
C1: Staff supervision and quality of practice (Mandatory): All staff involved in the scheme receive support and supervision at a frequency specified in the core manual. This will enable skills to be developed and problems resolved. C2: Supporting skills necessary to run schemes (Important): From interview, observation, appraisal and training audits all relevant staff have supporting skills sufficient to deliver the scheme. C3: Assessment of offender suitability (Mandatory): Routine monitoring results confirm the profile of those entering the scheme is consistent with the schemes design in relation to criminogenic needs, the level of risk of reoffending and the level of risk of harm/dangerousness. C4: Offender knowledge and understanding of the scheme’s requirements (Important): The requirements of the scheme are clearly communicated on at least two occasions to each offender verbally and in writing, and there is evidence from signed consent forms, observation and/or interview that offenders know and understand the requirements. C5: Adherence to scheme’s core manual (Mandatory): All elements of the scheme should be delivered in line with the core manual and demonstrate close adherence to the aims and objectives. C6: Practice is informed by monitoring and evaluation evidence (Important): Consistent use is made of monitoring and evaluation information, as it becomes available, by those with most direct responsibility (e.g. scheme managers giving regular consideration to attendance and completion information, supervisors to offender feedback on the quality of work undertaken, and tutors regarding progress in guided learning).

D: Quality of Delivery
D1: Pro Social and Cognitive Skills Modelling (Mandatory): Staff are applying pro social techniques and modelling practical problem solving skills with offenders. D2: Guided Skills Learning (Mandatory): The provision of Guided Skills Learning where identified in the Post Sentence Assessment Interviews. In these cases the delivery of Guided Skills Learning should be specified in the supervision plan. D3: Placement Quality Standards (Mandatory): All placements conform to the ECP Placement Quality Standards. D4: Personal communication skills (Mandatory): Effective engagement and communication with offenders. Pro social attitudes and practical problem solving skills are skilfully modelled by staff. This includes challenging pro criminal or anti social attitudes and behaviour. D5: Scheme delivered addressing race equality and wider diversity issues (Mandatory): Race equality and wider diversity issues are effectively addressed, whether arising from scheme delivery or offender response. Staff are alert to these issues, they always respond appropriately and show that they have considered and developed strategies for responding. D6: Group management skills (Mandatory): Supervisors and tutors manage groups effectively to facilitate learning by offenders. Disruption by participants is minimised.

E: Integrated Case Management
E1: Initial supervision plan sets relevant objectives for the offender (Mandatory): Specific objectives are set for the offender and are recorded in the initial supervision plan and regularly reviewed.

E2: Effective liaison arrangements (Important): There should be effective liaison between the Case Manager, scheme staff, and placement providers to ensure the delivery of the supervision plan. E3: Supporting the offender through all phases of the scheme (Mandatory): Management of the scheme ensures that opportunities are taken to motivate and support offenders at every stage of contact. E4: Understanding and knowledge of scheme methods (Important): Case Managers of CPO’s and CPRO’s have an understanding of the aims and objectives of the scheme and the skills to undertake the role, e.g. address poor offender motivation or engagement. E5: Monitoring of attendance and enforcement (Mandatory): Responsibility for the monitoring of attendance and the enforcement of orders is clearly defined with appropriate systems in place. There is evidence of effective enforcement in all cases. E6: Documentation (Important): The case record shows that all relevant documentation is completed. E7: End of scheme review (Important): There is a supervision plan review at the end of the CP work for each offender. Objectives are identified in appropriate cases to strengthen and build on the progress made and to achieve successful community reintegration.

F: Outcomes
F1: Highly valuable reparation work for local communities (Mandatory): ECP orders have a visible effect on reparation work within local communities. Work is of benefit to the local community. F2: Taxpayers receive excellent value for money from the ECP Scheme (Mandatory): ECP provides is value for money and provides benefits to the taxpayer. F3: ECP Scheme Offender compliance (Mandatory): ECP orders meet the National target of compliance of 70%. F4: ECP Scheme has been beneficial for offenders (Mandatory): Offenders regard that the scheme was beneficial to them. F5: Staff ownership of the scheme (Mandatory): There is full ownership of the scheme by managers, supervisors and the other relevant staff, e.g. court personnel and Case Managers. ECP staff have high level of morale/job satisfaction from their role in EPC scheme. F6: Maximising inclusion (Important): The scheme is designed for a broad range of placements for offenders. Assessment and support arrangements should exist so that women, black, ethnic minority and offenders with disabilities can fully participate in the scheme.

Unpaid Work Completions Information collected from the ECP self-assessment exercise suggests that the factors listed in the second column have an impact on completion rates. Use the third column to comment on the extent to which this is a relevant issue in the area and indicate the impact of specific local issues. The right hand column should be used for to identify planned improvements. Local Issues Section A: Committed Leadership and Supportive Management Effective liaison at senior management level with sentencers in order to influence sentencing practice in relation to: • Number of orders/requirements made • Length of orders/requirements made • Types of orders made (Multiple requirements?) • Types of sentences given following breach action. Communication between senior management and areas staff to ensure that there is understanding of: • Area targets and their meaning e.g. what constitutes and Unpaid Work completion. • Priority given to Unpaid work in Area Plan • Current information about performance and workflow Plans for Action


Section B: Scheme Management Responsibilities

Capacity to offer all offenders a minimum of six hours work each week. This is assisted by: • Policy on instructing offenders and managing shortfall in supervisor capacity • Arrangements to ensure that there is the minimum possible delay between sentencing and starting a work placement. • Contingency plans to provide work in bad weather • Rigorous and regular checking of offender employment status to ascertain whether there is any alternative to weekend working. • Provision of evening placements to take pressure off weekends • Availability of sessional supervisors to cover for absence at short notice • Flexible use of supervisors across areas • Use of larger workgroups for low risk offenders when supervisor capacity is limited and health and safety considerations permit


Section C: Quality Assurance Management

Provision of high quality supervision and practice development for supervisors working with offenders with OGRS scores of 41 and above to boost job satisfaction and retention rates. Provision of high quality placements where placement providers have confidence in the Probation Service. Issues which appear to influence completion rates include: • Area policy on transport to placements • Having placements in the right places i.e. areas with the highest offender populations • Consistency of placement for offenders • Consistency of supervisor for offenders • Offender commitment to Vocational Skills Learning/ ETE provision

Section D: Quality of Delivery


Section E: Integrated Case Management

Effective liaison in the management of CPROs/ multi requirement Community Orders whereby the Offender Manager gives the Unpaid Work element appropriate priority and manages the order in such a way as to increase the likelihood of successful completion