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Welcome to birmingham.gov.uk

Comprehensive Area Assessment (CAA)


Confirmation has been received of the decision by the new government to abolish CAA. Current work by the Audit Commission on CAA will cease with immediate effect, meaning that there will be no new or updated:

• area assessment and organisational assessment scores or reports

• assessment reports on the Oneplace website

• red or green flag issues reported

• scores for the use of resources, managing performance or organisational assessments.

Other assessment activities will continue, including:

• our annual assessment of children’s services by Ofsted during 2010

• our audit (in line with the statutory Code of Audit Practice), including an overall value for money conclusion and opinion on financial statements, by the Audit Commission

• risk based inspections already underway

Discussions on the future approach to audit and assessments have begun at national level. We will engage in any national consultation and communicate key issues locally.

For further information email:CAA.2009@birmingham.gov.uk


What is CAA?

Comprehensive Area Assessment (CAA) is the framework for the independent assessment of local public services in England. CAA became the main inspection and reporting regime for public services in England from April 2009 and replaced the former Comprehensive Performance Assessment (CPA) model.

The CAA consists of two major elements:

Area Assessment:This assesses how well local services are working together to improve the quality of life for local people. It looks across councils, health bodies, police forces, fire and rescue services and others responsible for local public services. Under CAA, local public services are collectively accountable for delivering better outcomes in their area.

Organisational Assessment: Individual organisations are reviewed separately. A local council is assessed, as an organisation on:

  • Performance
  • Value for money
  • Joint working with partners to achieve shared strategic outcomes

What does CAA cover?

Our Area Assessment includes in its scope leadership and governance of, and joint-working between, the Council and our Be Birmingham partners. It also assesses how effectively partners are working together to deliver agreed priorities for the area. It focuses on the city’s priorities and strategic outcomes, which aim to improve the quality of life for people in Birmingham. These are outlined in the:

Local Area Agreement

Sustainable Community Strategy - Birmingham 2026

Our CAA Organisational Assessment, assesses the Council separately (as an organisation). Areas of focus will include:

  • Managing finances - achieving Value for Money
  • Governing the business
  • Managing performance
  • Managing resources

How is CAA scored and reported?

The Audit Commission published scores and reports concluding their first CAA assessment of Birmingham on 9 December 2009.

Area Assessment:The area assessment is not scored, as such, but themes or areas of activity may be given either green or red ‘flags’:

  • 'Green flags' represent exceptional performance or outstanding improvement; they will also be awarded to highlight innovative practice. There is no right of appeal against not getting a 'green flag'.

  • 'Red Flags' are reported where there are significant concerns or risks. This could be a range of issues, e.g. poor performance on a key outcome to insufficient improvement, inadequate approach to managing risks. There is an opportunity to challenge potential red flags at the draft report stage.

Organisational Assessment:The organisational assessment scores for managing performance and value for money in the use of resources will be combined into a single score. The Audit Commission will rate the Council 1-4:

  • 1 = performs poorly
  • 2 = performs adequately
  • 3 = performs well
  • 4 = performs excellently

Want to know more?

If you wish to know more on the CAA or about how Birmingham City Council is performing, please see the links below or contact us:

Email: CAA.2009@birmingham.gov.uk


Telephone: 0121 303 1720


Write to us at: CAA Project Team, The Council House, Room 89, Victoria Square, Birmingham, B1 1BB

Other Useful Information

BeBirmingham-Local Strategic Partnership

Council Plan 2008 - 2013

Corporate Performance Monitoring