Nine areas have been chosen to pilot mental health assessments for children when they enter the care system. The Department for Education-funded pilot is to take place over the next two years in a bid to improve mental health support for looked-after children – by spotting problems at an earlier stage. The nine areas are: Brighton and Hove, Devon, Doncaster, the London Borough of Merton, North Yorkshire, North Tyneside, Salford, Staffordshire and West Berkshire. Each will test the use of an assessment that is focused on building trust between the professional carrying out the test and the child, through the APP (attention, perspective taking and providing empathy) model. The assessment will also include the views of those around the child, including their carer. A common barrier with current testing that the pilot aims to address is a difficulty in engaging children in conversations about their emotional wellbeing. Read more.