ANGUS COUNCIL EDUCATION DEPARTMENT. 5. How Getting it Right will operate in Angus Staged Intervention

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1 ANGUS COUNCIL EDUCATION DEPARTMENT 5. How Getting it Right will operate in Angus Staged Intervention 5.1 Stage 1: Universal Provision The first stage involves Health and Education staff working together with parents or carers and the child or young person to ensure that the universal needs of children are met. All staff should be aware of the needs of children to remain Safe, Healthy, Active, Nurtured, Achieving, Respected, Responsible and Included (S.H.A.N.A.R.R.I.). Single agencies will continue to collect and record core information on the children and young people they are working with. Where there is concern about a child s well-being, this should be shared with the Named Person for the child. The Named Person will: Act as an initial point of contact with regards to needs or issues identified with respect to that child. Be employed by Health or Education (a universal service), and will be expected to link up with other universal providers to meet the needs of the child and their family. Carry out their duties as outlined within their own service. Gather, record, assess and meet needs within universal services. Maintain a chronology of significant events. The chronology seeks to provide a clear account of all significant events in a child s life, drawing upon the knowledge held by parents/carers and agencies involved with the child and family. A significant event is anything that has a significant positive or negative impact on the child. It does not have to have happened to the child, but could result in a change of their circumstances or home environment. This brief and summarised account of events provides a pattern of emerging evidence of needs and highlights possible risks. It indicates when a multi agency response may be required. The chronology should not replace existing case notes or records which will include additional detailed information. The Named Person is expected to initiate an assessment of need, based upon the my world triangle and the eight indicators of well-being. Identified needs will either be met from within the existing service or where an additional service(s) is/are required, the case should progress to Stage 2.

2 5.1.1 Child Protection Concerns There will be circumstances where immediate action is required due to the nature of the concern and where a suspicion of abuse or neglect is identified. This must be discussed immediately with the designated person, and progressed as set out in the child protection procedures. If at any point during the process there are child protection concerns, agency Child Protection Procedures should be adhered to. 5.2 Stage 2: Making Connections Following the Initial Assessment undertaken by the Named Person where an additional service(s) is required from within Health, Education or the Voluntary sector - then contact should be made directly. For example, School and Family Support Service, Educational Psychology Service, School Medical Services (WEB). At this stage, a copy of the Initial Assessment should be shared. Where appropriate a Stage 2 meeting should be held and any agreed support should be written into the Child s Plan. This Plan should be regularly monitored and reviewed, with dates identified to do this. Where the initial assessment identifies that a number of services are required, or that the child has more complex needs which require a range of services then consideration should be given to progressing to Stage 3. The Named Person check list should be considered in assisting the Named Person to decide whether an Integrated Assessment and/or Child s Planning Meeting is required. On review of the Child s Plan, where the additional service is no longer required, revert back to Stage Planning, Support and Resources Where the Named Person identifies that the child has some additional needs, they should consider using the range of services available across Angus Council and partners to meet the needs of the child. 5.3 Stage 3: Child s Planning Meeting The Child s Planning Meeting will take place when the Named Person identifies, through the initiation of the Integrated Assessment, that in order to meet the child s needs, a number of services may need to become involved. An Integrated Assessment and Child s Plan presents a process for professionals to bring together their specialist knowledge and experiences into a clearer, holistic picture of the child, their family and their community.

3 When is a Child s Plan Meeting Required? When the Named Person has concerns about a child s well-being and recognises that the child s needs cannot be met solely by the resource of a single agency or universal services, they will initiate an Integrated Assessment. On the collation of the information, it may be appropriate for the Named Person to draw up a Single Agency Plan and provide help for the child and family immediately. In other circumstances the concerns may indicate a need for additional help from other agencies. The Getting it Right principle is that for a child who has complex needs, the Child s Plan is discussed and reviewed in a single forum: The Child s Planning Meeting. A Child s Planning Meeting must be convened when: The child s needs are complex and require a range of services. Where there may be a need for statutory supervision through the Children s Hearing. This will ensure that all aspects of available support to the family have been considered. Where the current single agency plan is not achieving change for the child and additional supports may be required How to Convene a Child s Planning Meeting The Named Person will ensure that a planning meeting takes place to include all relevant services. Education, Health and Social Work staff will be the minimum cohort of all Child s Planning Meetings. The child, young person and their parent(s) or carer(s) will also attend this meeting. The Named Person will send out invites to the meeting together with the Integrated Assessment. The expectation is that all agencies consider the information within the Integrated Assessment and check their own records for additional information prior to attending the meeting. The Named Person will chair the Child s Planning Meeting (See Guidance on Chairing a Child s Planning Meeting). In some cases it may be more appropriate for another professional to convene and chair the Child s Planning Meeting (see section below). The Child s Planning Meeting will consider the initial Integrated Assessment prepared by the Named Person and the information shared by the family and other agencies. The Named Person or another participant in the meeting will record the information to be added to the Integrated Assessment.

4 Through discussion in the meeting, the child s needs will be identified and recorded. The meeting may decide the following: The plan can be delivered by one or two agencies. The Named Person will continue to manage the Single Agency Plan (Stage 2). Or The Plan will be delivered by several agencies and/or is complex. In these instances a Lead Professional will be required Chairing the Child s Planning Meeting As Getting it Right is being implemented, the Child s Planning Meeting serves to streamline the functions of existing forums such as network meetings, stage 3, Looked After Child Reviews, Child Protection Case Conferences (CPCC), reviews of children s health and Co-ordinated Support Plan(CSP) reviews. The format, Chair and attendees of the Child s Planning Meeting will reflect the complexity of the child s needs and circumstances. Looked After Child Reviews, CPCC s etc will continue in their current form but the critical change will be that this meeting will cover all aspects of the child s needs and the Plan will be a single Plan reflecting all of the relevant outcomes and tasks. When the purpose of the Child s Planning Meeting is to focus on early, non statutory intervention, the Named Person should chair the meeting. If the concerns indicate the need for more information or requires further action and where the Lead Person is easily identified (e.g in cases where statutory measures are likely to be put in place), then an agreement should be reached that the Named Person will hand over the coordination to a Lead Professional before the Child s Planning Meeting. Where the child or young person is on the Child Protection Register and the meeting is a Child Protection Case Conference, the meeting will be chaired by the Community Assessment and Review Officer from Social Work and Health. Where the child or young person is on the Child Protection Register and the meeting is a Core Group Meeting, the meeting will be chaired by either the Team Manager or Social Worker/Lead Professional from Social Work and Health. The Child s Plan will be formulated using the standard Child s Plan format.

5 The Child s/young Person s Plan The Child s/young Person s Plan is designated to be developed within the Child s Planning Meeting. However, it must be recognised that the membership of the initial Child s Planning Meeting may not be representative of the group of people who will deliver the Child s/young Person s Plan. For example, participants at a Child Protection Case Conference will not all actively be involved in delivering the Child s Plan. In the Child s Plan Meeting, the initial Child s/young Person s Plan is developed. The Lead Professional and members of the Core Group are identified to deliver and manage the Child s/young Person s Plan. This may involve convening Core Group Meetings to update and review the Plan. The Lead Professional will be responsible for managing the core group meetings. The Child s/young Person s Plan is not a static document. It is a living, dynamic document, which layers details, information and responses to a child s concerns over time. This includes the assessment, which is updated during the involvement with the child/young person and the agreed actions and desired outcomes for the child. Where necessary plans developed by different agencies should be integrated and co-ordinated plans. The principles of Getting it Right require practitioners to work in accordance with legislation and guidance and also expect agencies to think beyond their immediate remit, drawing on the skills and knowledge of others as necessary and thinking in a broad, holistic way. For example, a Health Care Plan, or an Individualised Educational Plan should be incorporated within the Child s/young Person s Plan where the child or young person s circumstances require this. In school, learning plans, such as Individualised Educational Programmes (IEP), may be used to help plan the learning of children and young people with additional support needs. If there are more complex needs requiring the co-ordination of support then a Co-ordinated Support Plan may be produced as this is a statutory requirement. These plans will contain the same elements of information as a Getting it Right Child s/young Person s Plan, for example, use of common language, similar structure. This makes it easy for the plans to be integrated for a child with a number of concerns. All of those who are involved in implementing the plan, including the child and family, should have a copy or access to it. Children with a CSP, and other children with high or complex needs (for example, accommodated children, and those who may be at risk of significant harm) will have their Plans formally reviewed at meetings of all those who are directly involved, including the child and family.

6 Planning for the Needs of the Family A particular dimension which is central to the Social Work Service but relevant to all other agencies is working with both the child and the family. This is the Child's Plan and as such emphasis is on services for the child. However, part of the overall plan may be about the need for: Change in parental lifestyle. Additional support to compensate for parental vulnerabilities. Development of parenting abilities. Changes to the home environment for the child's benefit. Some services may therefore be appropriately focused on adult needs and draw on other statutory, voluntary or independent services. Where such services are involved in the Child's Plan, it needs to be clear that, while subsequent decisions may take into account progress made by parents to improve their circumstances or functioning, the local authority retain the responsibility to assess whether such changes will be sufficient to affect the Plan itself, with the child's well-being remaining central Child Protection Plan Where a child is thought to be at significant risk of harm, the primary concern will be for their safety. The planning process must reflect this. A Child Protection Case Conference (CPCC) will be convened by Social Work and Health and attended by the Named Person, Lead Professional, family and all other relevant professionals. The chair of the meeting will ensure that the discussions stay focussed on specific concerns about the safety of the child, the actions required to reduce risk and whether the case should be referred to the Children s Reporter. When a Child s Plan is in existence and a CPCC is convened, the Child s Plan will be used to develop into a Child Protection Plan which will set out in detail the perceived risks and needs, what is required to reduce the risks and who is expected to take tasks forward. The Child s Plan should be updated accordingly. The CPCC will identify the core group and, if not already decided, the Lead Professional who will refine the Child Protection Plan and ensure its delivery. Any interventions should be proportionate and clearly linked to a desired outcome for the child. Progress can only be meaningfully measured if the action or activity has had a positive impact on the child Reviewing the Child s Plan At each review, the objectives set should be considered. Where outcomes have not been achieved due to children or their parents refusing to comply with the Plan or where despite their co-operation, there has been little or no improvement, then consideration should be given to making a referral to the Authority Reporter.

7 Where outcomes have been met, then consideration needs to be given to the Named Person returning to having overall responsibility for that child, where the Named Person is not the Lead Professional. If no progress is made following reviews of the Child s Plan it may mean the support in place is not suitable to meet the desired outcomes. Participants of the Child s Plan should be asked to re-assess the needs of the child to determine the barriers to progress being made and future actions Referral to the Children s Reporter Where there are concerns that a Child s Plan is not meeting desired outcomes on a voluntary basis with families, consideration must be given to a referral to the Children s Reporter and recorded within the record of the Child s Plan Meeting. Work with children and their families should always follow the rule of minimum intervention and a referral should not be made to the Children s Reporter where there is full co-operation with the established plan. Where the Named Person is considering making a referral to the Children s Reporter, they should first consider convening a Child s Plan Meeting to ensure that all of the possible supports have been considered and all of the key agencies are fully aware of the circumstances. At this meeting, the proposed Child s Plan should still be drafted and agreed so all agencies are working to an agreed outcome. The reasons why compulsory measures of care may be required to deliver the plan must be fully discussed in the meeting and agreement reached about who will make the referral to the Children s Reporter and the timescale for this. At the present time, different agencies have different report formats for submitting information to the Children s Reporter. Through getting it right in Angus, eventually the Integrated Assessment and Child Plan should be used to provide collated multi-agency information to the Children s Reporter. A copy of the integrated assessment and Child s Plan should be sent together with the referral to inform the Reporter. 5.4 Stage 4: Advice and Intervention Where further intervention is identified, then the Integrated Assessment and Child/Young Person s Plan should be progressed to Stage 4 by the Lead Professional The outcome of Stage 4 may be: The provision of a range of extended support for the child/young person. Advice regarding revisiting earlier stages of the process for further assessment or intervention as required. Advice and support based on good practice.

8 This should include Children and Young People where there is a risk that at a Children s Hearing there is the possibility of a disposal to residential and/or secure care. This should go to Stage 4 prior to the Children s Hearing. 5.5 Stage 5: Joint Directorate When the Stage 4 identifies the need for additional or out of authority resources such as Residential School or Secure Care then this decision will require sanction by Directors or Heads of Services on an individual case-by-case basis. Senior Health Managers are also involved as necessary. This process is to ensure that every child receives the structure and support necessary to maintain and meet their needs in their local community if at all possible.

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