The Children in Need (CIN) Census is an annual data collection that covers all children who are referred to children’s social care services, even if no further action is taken. This includes children looked after (CLA), those supported in their families or independently (CSF/I), and children who are the subject of a child protection plan.
By collecting information about the numbers and characteristics of children in need who are receiving services from local authority (LA) social services, the Department can analyse the pathways of children who move in and out of the care system over time and the patterns of support they receive.
Data is submitted using COLLECT, the Department’s centralised data collection and management system for education.
There has been an important change to the method of access and password administration for COLLECT. There is new system called Secure Access (SA), which provides a single, secure point of entry to departmental IT systems and ensures that the data is protected. SA will also allow users to manage password resets on a self-service basis, without helpdesk assistance.
Important changes for 2012–13 are:
Please read the census guide for further details.
LAs should submit data to the Department between 1 April and 31 July 2013.
If an LA fails to submit its data by 31 July 2013, it may not be included in published figures or used by Ofsted as part of their safeguarding and looked after children inspections.
The following support document downloads are available for CIN Census 2012–13:
The following technical tools and specifications are also available:
Please use the service request form if you would like to change your contact details, request a COLLECT username and password or make any queries about the CIN Census.
Please use the feedback request form if you have any comments about the content on this web page, the Data Collection Helpdesk service, the COLLECT system or any other aspect of our data collection service.
Version 1.3 - notes for completing the 2012-13 Children in Need (CIN) Census - released March 2013.
PDF, 647 Kb
COLLECT guidance for local authorities to use with the 2012-13 Children in Need Census.
PDF, 722 Kb
Frequently asked questions to assist local authorities with their 2012-13 CIN Census return.
PDF, 452 Kb
Contains details of all validation rules for the 2012-13 CIN Census, including guidance as to how to resolve these errors and queries on COLLECT.
Excel, 125 Kb
This document details the methodology used to calculate the reports available in COLLECT. Updated March 2013.
PDF, 414 Kb
A tool for use by those who have non-standard systems unable to produce data extracts in the required XML format. Please note: this is the updated version of the converter which has been improved following LA feedback. Updated in March 2013. Date fields changed from text to date format following LA feedback.
zip, 751 Kb
Version 1.5 – technical specification for the 2012-13 Children in Need (CIN) Census - released December 2012
PDF, 458 Kb
XSLT validation files for the 2012-13 Children in Need Census
zip, 27 Kb
Schema files for the 2012-13 Children in Need Census.
zip, 20 Kb
Information to help Secure Access users activate and log in to their accounts.