SCOPE OF THIS CHAPTER
This chapter does not apply to children who are the subject of a Child Protection Plan. Where the child is subject to a Child Protection Plan, this will be drawn up in outline at the Initial Child Protection Conference and in detail at the Core Group meeting(s). It will be reviewed by a Child Protection Review Conference. Please see Derby and Derbyshire Safeguarding Children Partnership Online Procedures in relation to the implementation of the Child Protection Plan.
For children who are in receipt of Short Breaks, see the Short Breaks Procedure.
In June 2019, Section 3, Reviews of Child in Need Plans was updated to set out expectations in relation to the frequency and format of Child in Need Reviews. In addition, Section 3.1, Review and Oversight by Managers was updated to reflect the role of the Team Manager and Practice Supervisor in reviewing children who have been subject to Child in Need Plans for longer than 6 months.
Child in Need Planning Meetings will follow a social care Single Assessment which concludes that social care services are required to meet the child's needs under Section 17 of the Children Act 1989.
The Planning Meeting provides an opportunity for a child and their parents/carers, together with key agencies, to identify and agree the package of services required and to develop the Child in Need Plan.
All Child in Need Planning Meetings should be attended by the child (depending on age and understanding), parents/carers and those agencies whose potential/actual contribution is recommended as an outcome of an assessment.
The relevant social worker should discuss potential attendees for the Planning Meeting with the child and the parents/carers prior to arrangements being made for the meeting.
It will be important that an appropriate venue suitable for the child and their family are used for the meeting. Consideration must be given to transport, timing and any child care issues. Where a child is attending a meeting and is of school age the meeting should be held outside of school time, wherever possible.
A social worker is responsible for convening the meeting within the necessary timescales and arranging invitations.A social worker will chair the meeting and will ensure accurate notes of the meeting are taken. This record will be copied to those involved, including the child and parent/s who need to agree them.
A Child in Need Plan will be developed in a Child in Need Planning Meeting.
The Child in Need Plan will identify the social worker as the Lead Professional (in most cases), any resources or services that will be needed to achieve the planned outcomes within the agreed timescales and who is responsible for which action and the time-scale involved.
Following the completion of the assessment it might be appropriate for a Community Care Worker (CCW) to deliver the support required as part of that child's plan, with a social worker providing support and guidance in reviewing the plan at Child in Need meetings.
In particular, the Child in Need Plan should:
It is an expectation that plans are reviewed every 6 weeks. This review is recorded by the Lead Professional and would involve the participation of the child, their family and any other professionals supporting them within the plan. Reviews would usually take place within a multi-agency Network Meeting.
There may be some exceptions to the 6 weekly plan reviews; for example those cases where the plan acknowledges the need for longer term support in relation to disability services. All such plans will be reviewed at least every 3 months.
If there are significant changes in the family circumstances, an early review may be necessary.
The purpose of the Review is to ensure that the services provided are contributing to the achievement of the objectives within the time-scales set.
At each meeting to review a Plan, consideration should be given to what has worked well and what has not been achieved and whether any additional actions are needed.
There is opportunity to record the child/young person and family's views throughout the meeting and develop further action plans if deemed necessary. Future action plans should recognise and encourage good practice already identified.
Whenever a plan is reviewed, consideration should be given to how long the plan has been in place, how effective the plan is and how any lack of progress is impacting on the child.
It is important to record on the action plan what might happen if the action plan is not followed. Any concerns about the progress a family is making should be discussed with a manager in regular supervision or at any other time should the need arise.
All decisions made should be recorded on the child's electronic record, together with reasons/rationale, and dated.
Any decisions recorded should be sent to the child (if old enough), parent and all other participants in the Review process.The outcome of a Review will be:
Where the threshold for involvement has changed the plan should be stepped up or down accordingly.
Where it appears that the child may be suffering or likely to suffer Significant Harm, then a Strategy Discussion/Meeting should take place to determine if Section 47 enquiries are needed.
Any child protection or safeguarding issues which arise during the course of a Child in Need Plan must be responded to in line with Derby and Derbyshire Safeguarding Children Partnership Procedures.
All Child's Plans must be overseen and regularly reviewed by their manager.
The purpose of management oversight is to ensure that the Child's Plan is appropriately robust, continues to meet the agreed objective, is effecting change and is within the agreed timescales.If a child remains subject to a Child in Need plan for 6 months, a discussion should take place within supervision between the Practice Supervisor and Team Manager involved and consideration given to the Team Manager chairing the multi-agency Child in Need meeting, to provide some independent scrutiny on the plan and prevent drift. If this is not deemed appropriate this decision and its rationale should be recorded on the case file and regularly reviewed. When it is agreed that a formal review by a Team Manager is needed, independent scrutiny will continue to be given through supervision and further formal reviews chaired by the team manager (at least every 6 months) unless deemed not appropriate/necessary to do so. The 6 weekly reviews by the Lead Professional will continue to take place between formal reviews by the Team Manager.
This section deals with children who are subject to Children in Need Plans and who move to another local authority. The principles apply to local authorities in the circumstances of both transferring out and receiving in Children in Need.
In a number of situations, a move by children and their families to another local authority will be positive option. However, where the move appears unplanned or where where children and their families may have moved on more than one occasion in a short space of time, services should consider whether the child is subject to trafficking or modern slavery (see Assessments Procedure).
For Children in Care, see: Out of Area Placements Procedure
Only valid for 48hrs