General Reports and Other Publications

DCMS: Former Liverpool Football Club chief executive Rick Parry has recommended that a national cross-sports integrity unit be established to best tackle the threat of betting corruption in sport

The proposal is one of the key recommendations in a report from Parry (& a panel of sports betting integrity experts) that was commissioned by Sports Minister, Gerry Sutcliffe, in June 2009, which was prompted by Sutcliffe’s concern with the number of suspicious betting cases being reported to the Gambling Commission.
Press release ~ Report of the Sports Betting Integrity Panel
ScotGov: Young Scots seeking to improve their skills in traditional music or dance may get the opportunity to be mentored by a master exponent of the art. That is one of the recommendations of the Traditional Arts Working Group report, published last week that explores the cultural legacy of Scotland's past, as reflected in traditional art forms.
Press release ~ Report ~ Traditional Arts Working Group
IfL: The Institute for Learning (IfL) has welcomed the introduction of an assessment-only route to Qualified Teacher Status (QTS), the accreditation for qualified teachers in state-maintained & special schools.  This will offer further education teachers who have a degree and Qualified Teacher Learning and Skills (QTLS) status a fast & flexible route to QTS accreditation, so that they can work as qualified teachers in schools.
The Training and Development Agency for Schools (TDA) recently published a report on the outcome of its consultation regarding the assessment-only route to QTS.  IfL had responded to the consultation in autumn 2009 and the TDA's report specifically mentions IfL's recommendation that those carrying out assessments for further education teachers should be sufficiently knowledgeable about the vocational or subject area and the further education context to make judgements.
IfL had also suggested that the degree requirement should be extended to include recognition of vocational qualifications & relevant experience, for example, for those in the FE sector who had been successfully teaching for many years without having gained an undergraduate degree or equivalent qualification.  In its consultation report, however, the TDA reiterated that teaching was a graduate profession.
Press release ~ Institute for Learning (IfL) ~ Training and Development Agency for Schools (TDA) ~ TDA consultation report: Draft requirements for the proposed Assessment Only route to QTS ~ Qualified Teacher Learning and Skills (QTLS) ~ Universities Council for the Education of Teachers (UCET)
CRC: Over the last 6 months the environment in which housing & planning operates has changed significantly.  The current challenging economic climate has contributed to a slower rate of housing supply which, when set alongside strong housing demand, is creating some significant pressure on the supply of affordable and market housing developments

In the Commission for Rural Communities’ latest State of the Countryside Update: Housing demand & supply report on housing supply & demand, they have are highlighted how these pressures are likely to become more acute over the coming decades.
Press release ~ State of the Countryside Update: Housing demand and supply
NAO: The Department of Health's strategy for stroke care has increased the priority & awareness of the condition and started to improve patients' care & outcomes, concludes a report by the National Audit Office.  

Actions taken since 2006 have improved the value for money of stroke care; but improvements have not been universal andimprovements in follow-up care have not matched those of acute care services.
Press release ~ NAO report - Department of Health: Progress in improving stroke care ~ Reducing Brain Damage: Faster access to better stroke care (2005) ~ DH: Stroke ~ Act FAST' advertising campaign
CRC: The Commission for Rural Communities’ Commissioners recently considered the ways in which public resources are allocated between different places.  They agreed that it is important that resources are allocated in ways that are fair between different places, but they also raised a number of questions & rural proofing approaches for making sure that this is the case for rural places.
This focus on fairness is timely, with public sector retrenchment and with various reviews of resource allocation systems in the pipeline (for example of the Dedicated Schools Grant) and with keen interest in this subject from rural bodies (such as in the rural manifesto recently published by the Rural Service Network).
Press release ~ Position statement - 'How can public resources be fairly allocated between different places? ~ Dedicated Schools Grant ~ Rural manifesto
DH: A report into GP Out-Of-Hours care that makes a number of recommendations for improving the system has been published by the Department of Health. The report - General Practice Out of Hours Services - follows a review by Dr David Colin-Thome, National Clinical Director for Primary Care at the Department of Health and Professor Steve Field, Chairman of Council, Royal College of General Practitioners.  The DH has accepted all the recommendations in the report.
Press release ~ General practice out-of-hours services ~ GP out of hours services: letter from David Nicholson
Ofsted: The best providers of the Workstep programme have displayed a marked shift in the support given to disabled people to overcome mental, physical & personal barriers to get & keep a job, according to a report published by Ofsted, the Office for Standards in Education, Children’s Services and Skills.
Improving progression to unsupported employment: A review of strategies developed by Workstep providers highlights the variety of approaches which a range of organisations have developed to help disabled people gain employment.  

The report finds the most effective Workstep providers actively promote the valuable skills disabled people can bring to the workplace, helping to break down myths about the roles disabled people can perform.
Press release ~ Workstep programme ~ Improving progression to unsupported employment: A review of strategies developed by Workstep providers
NAO: The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills’ (BIS’s) free face-to-face advice for people struggling with debt has helped more people than planned, at slightly less than the planned cost per person, and is highly regarded by those that use it.  However, demand is now outstripping capacity and support could be provided to more people through further efficiencies, the National Audit Office has reported.  
An NAO survey found that 81% of people who received the advice said it helped compared to 69% for advice received from a fee charging professional and 59% for advice received from a bank. Between July 2008 & July 2009 there was a 28% increase in the number of people contacting advice providers and, in some instances, there is not the capacity to cope.  A quarter of advice agencies are either refusing new clients or have a waiting period of over a month.
Press release ~ NAO – Business, Innovation and Skills: Helping over-indebted consumers ~ Case Studies ~ Where to find help with Debt
Keeping benefit and business grant payments flowing