There is, unsurprisingly, some positive rhetoric around the county council's plans to revamp its youth services.
Major revamp of youth services planned: read our story>>>
We are told, in a lengthy and often confusing report, that it is about “the vision for the transformation of Kent Youth Service and the innovative model of service delivery” and a plan that “combines excellence in direct delivery with commmissioned local providers to deliver creative approaches for young people to engage in youth work opportunities in their communities.” Phew.
The bits about potential job losses, the closure of a raft of youth centres and the signficant risk that there may nto be enough providers out there to take on all the current activities that KCC provides are not easily found.
But they merit attention, especially the question of whether KCC can successfully outsource to other organisations. On this, the report is circumspect, admitting: "It is unknown at this stage how many newly commissioned projects will replace those which are directly delivered following consultation" and can only sat that "it is anticipated that a greater number of smaller projects will replace the current delivery pattern."
In another section, it says where KCC is no longer the provider via youth centres, alternatives could be continued through newly-commissioned providers - note the element of uncertainty.
The most telling comment comes in a section headed "Risk and Business Continuity Management" where the council states: "There is a significant risk to the quality and capacity of service delivery at the outset of the Commissioning Model."
Interestingly, KCC also seems prepared to accept that it might actually have to provide money to some of these new social entrepeneurs to get them on to a sound footing. And how are they proposing this? "The process may require access to Kent's Big Society Fund and other sources for newly-created social enterprises."
So, youth services are being outsourced to save money but in order to save that money, KCC may be in the odd position of giving financial support to the organisations that take on this work.
Is youth services being used by Kent as a test bed for the Big Society? The authority has allocated £5m to its own fund and clearly would want to see some results from a decision that some have found a little odd.
I have no idea whether KCC's vision for its youth services will work and even less idea about whether it will result in better services. But there are clearly some doubts if you examine the language used by the council in its report.