Children’s services statutory returns suppliers and local authority focus group joint meeting

This group provides a forum for data providers to discuss current practice and proposed changes to children’s services statutory returns.

Terms of reference

The group looks at current practice and proposed changes to all children’s services statutory data returns including:

The group discusses issues related to how data is currently collected, the way in which data is published and shared, and is asked to provide feedback about changes proposed to future collections.

The group also provides a forum at which DfE can provide guidance to local authorities submitting their annual children’s services census returns.

Meeting dates

The group only meets if there are enough topics to discuss. Meetings usually take place annually in February or March. Recent meetings have been held virtually via Teams, but may be held face to face in both Sheffield and London.

All local authorities and suppliers can submit questions to the meeting, even if they are unable to attend. Meeting notes are sent to all local authorities and suppliers following the event.


The group is formed of representatives from local authorities, software suppliers and DfE.

All local authorities and suppliers are invited, but attendance is voluntary and varies for each meeting.

If you would like to join this group and believe you meet the membership criteria above, please email using the contact details on this page.


Any queries relating to this group should be directed to