Children’s Services

Family Conferencing

Posted on March 5, 2013. Filed under: Children's Services, Family conferencing |

Definition

Every family is unique, but in all families problems can arise from time to time. Sometimes these difficulties can be solved within the family, with additional support from extended family and friends, but on other occasions through additional support, advice and resources from other agencies.

Family conferences are used to make plans for children in a number of different contexts:

  • Child welfare
  • Education welfare
  • Child protection
  • Looked After Children
  • Youth offending
  • Education welfare
  • Anti-social behaviour
  • Domestic violence
  • Children as young carers
  • Breakdown of fostering or adoptive placements

Good practice examples

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Disability

Posted on March 5, 2013. Filed under: Children's Services, Disability |

Definition

Disabled children are those with disabilities defined by Section 5/6 of the Disabled Persons Act 1986.

They would generally be children attending special schools and receiving high or middle rates of Disability Living Allowance.

Usually, support services to the disabled child and their family aim to keep the child at home by providing home-based support. Where this is impractical, periodic breaks or respite services may be provided, limiting situations of children having to live apart from their families on a full time basis to a minimum.

In more complex cases, support may be enabled through residential services. Foster care, direct payments and residential services may be required.

Blue Badges: a child qualifies automatically for a Blue Badge if they are over two years old and either receive the Higher Rate of the Mobility Component of the Disability Living Allowance or they are registered blind. They may also be eligible if they are more than two years old and either have a permanent and substantial disability which means they cannot walk, or which makes walking very difficult. A parent of a child who is less than two years old may apply for a badge for their child if the child has a specific medical condition which means that they must always be accompanied by bulky medical equipment which cannot be carried around without great difficulty; and/or they need to be kept near a vehicle at all times, so that they can, if necessary, be treated in the vehicle, or quickly driven to a place where they can be treated, such as a hospital.

Policies and legislation

Useful links

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Connexions

Posted on March 5, 2013. Filed under: Children's Services, Connexions |

Definition

“Connexions provides advice, information and guidance (IAG) on careers and learning for all young people aged 13-19 via schools, colleges and Connexions centres.

Connexions also helps young people who need additional support, such as those who are not in education, employment or training (NEET), young people with special needs or learning difficulties, teenage parents or others with more complex needs.

Connexions Personal Advisers (PAs) can help young people with anything from courses and jobs to money, legal issues, housing, relationships, alcohol and drugs, volunteering or leisure activities. ”

Wiltshire Council

Policies and legislation

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Children’s Centres

Posted on March 5, 2013. Filed under: Children's Centres, Children's Services |

Definition

“Sure Start children’s centres are the focal point for early years services. Every family with children up to the age of 5 and prospective parents have access to a range of services through their local Sure Start children’s centre.”

North Yorkshire County Council

Policies and legislation

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Children in need

Posted on March 5, 2013. Filed under: Children in need, Children's Services |

Definition

The department of health, in their introductory text to their ‘Framework for the assessment of children in need and their families’, says that it aims towards “Securing the wellbeing of children by protecting them from all forms of harm and ensuring their development needs are responded to appropriately are primary aims of Government policy. A framework has been developed which provides a systematic way of analysing, understanding and recording what is happening to children and young people within their families and the wider context of the community in which they live”. A link to this framework is below.

Useful links

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Child protection

Posted on February 25, 2013. Filed under: Child protection, Children's Services |

Definition

“Under the 1989 Children Act, local authorities have to investigate where there is a reasonable cause to suspect that a child is suffering (or likely to suffer) significant harm.” – Southampton City Council

“All children have a right to grow up in a caring and safe environment. All adults have a responsibility to protect children” – North Lanarkshire Council

Policies and legislation

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Care leavers

Posted on February 22, 2013. Filed under: Care leavers, Children's Services |

Definition

Young people who are about to leave or have left local authority care (being looked after and/or looked after and accommodated.

Their plans for leaving care are usually developed through a pathway plan which will look at options for:

  • Where they want to live
  • Whether they stay in education or seek employment
  • Where they will get support if things get difficult

Young people who have been ‘looked after’ may be entitled to a resettlement grant, intended to help towards setting up their own accommodation. However, this is discretionary and is not a guaranteed amount.

Financial assistance may be available if they are in full-time education or training. If they go on to university they can be supported throughout their course until the age of 24, including help with accommodation over the vacations.


Policies and legislation

The Children (Leaving Care) Act 2000http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2000/35/contents


Useful links

http://www.solihull.gov.uk/fostering/careleavers.htm

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Adoption

Posted on February 22, 2013. Filed under: Adoption, Children's Services |

Definition

Adoption is a way of providing new families for children who cannot be brought up by their biological parents. The adoptive parents take on the legal responsibility for the child, and the child becomes a full member of a new family, usually taking the new family name. Once an adoption order has been granted, it cannot be reversed except in extremely rare circumstances. Adoption means that an adopted child loses all legal ties with their birth parents and becomes a full member of their new family, usually taking the family’s name. Links with the birth family may be maintained.


Policies and legislation

Adoption and Children Act 2002: http://www.legislation.gov.uk/ukpga/2002/38/contents


Good practice examples

Frequently asked questions on Nottingham City Council’s websitehttp://www.nottinghamcity.gov.uk/index.aspx?articleid=357

North Lanarkshire Council’s adoption and fostering web pageshttp://www.northlanarkshire.gov.uk/index.aspx?articleid=3035

Devon’s guide to adoption http://www.devon.gov.uk/adoption.htm


Useful links

British Association of Adoption and Fostering http://www.baaf.org.uk/

Adoption UK http://www.adoptionuk.org/

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Residential care

Posted on February 22, 2013. Filed under: Children's Services, Residential care |

Definition

Residential care for children and children’s homes are there to ensure that the needs of children are met when they cannot live with their own family. They are a place for children to develop and grow, as well as providing food, shelter, and space for play and leisure in a caring environment. Children’s homes look after children with many different needs.

Policies and legislation

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