Looking After Children (LAC), a case management system for children in out-of-home care, has been the subject of pilot implementation in several Australian states. Barnardos Australia, in association with the University of NSW, implemented LAC in all of its out-of-home care programs as part of an Australian Research Council (ARC) research grant, in 1997–99.
This study looks at the factors affecting implementation of Looking After Children in Barnardos Australia out-of-home care programs during the initial twelve month period (1997–98). Information collected from interviews with eleven program managers, and examination of records containing LAC material on casework files, are used to explore factors which assisted or impeded LAC implementation. Similarities are highlighted between UK and Australian experiences of LAC implementation, and issues are raised of significance to agencies considering using LAC.