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Decision details

Recommissioning of Daytime Short Break Activities for Disabled Children and Young People

Decision Maker: Cabinet Member for Children and Families

Decision status: Recommendations Approved

Is Key decision?: Yes

Is subject to call in?: Yes


The report will recommend that the Council recommissions from a range of third/independent sector providers, a programme of weekend and school holiday Short Break Services and Activities for Disabled Children and Young People in Sheffield.  These services provide important leisure and development activities for disabled children and provide a break from caring for parents and carers.


(i) approves a retender of the Short Break day-time Opportunities for Disabled Children and Young People;


(ii) approves the procurement strategy for the retender namely that the contracts will be for a maximum of 4 years from 1st October 2019, with a break clause after 12, 24 and 36 months. Total value over 4 years is: £2,100,000. The break clause would trigger in the event of the budgetary funding being reduced, funding no longer available or a change in strategy, or poor provider performance;


(iii) delegates authority to the Director of Commissioning, Inclusion and Learning, in consultation with the Director of Finance and Commercial Services or nominated representatives to run the procurement process and award contracts for the retendered services as outlined in this report; and


(iv) approves the continuation of service delivery arrangements with existing suppliers under the terms and conditions which applied in their contracts which expired on 31st March 2019, from 1st April 2019 until such date that contracts procured for successor service delivery arrangements commence, and delegates authority to the Director of Commissioning, Inclusion and Learning to take any actions necessary to facilitate this continuation.


Reasons for the decision:

  • We have a statutory duty to provide short break services
  • Legally we must retender these services as the current contracts expire in 2019 and we must have a legal basis to pay for and monitor continued provision.
  • These day time short break services provide a very positive preventative service along with added value of increased skills and independence of children and young people

·         They deliver improved long term outcomes, keeping families together and enabling children to develop new skills.

Alternative options considered:

The Council could do nothing, but this is not a viable option because:


  • The current contracts must be legally retendered.  They will expire in 2019 and we will have no provision of daytime short breaks to children and families.

·         As a LA we have a duty to provide Short Breaks at weekends and during school holidays. We must continue to provide these services.


The Council could bring all Short Break day time services in-house:


This has not been considered a viable option because these services employ many staff to work at weekends and school holidays; recruitment for these periods is very difficult. Many are also linked to other services the providers offer (for example other family support, or early years/nursery provision, or use of sport clubs and other facilities.) As a local authority we do not have an in-house infrastructure to deliver, or recruit and retain the staff required.  The proposed approach is the most cost effective and also supports a range of local voluntary and community organisations.


Publication date: 11/07/2019

Date of decision: 09/07/2019

Effective from: 18/07/2019

Accompanying Documents: