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5.3.6 Post Placement Arrangements

SCOPE OF THIS CHAPTER

The chapter summarises the key arrangements that must be made after a child becomes Looked After.


Contents

  1. The Care Plan
  2. Notifications
  3. Complaints and Advocacy
  4. Placement Planning Meetings
  5. Support and Monitoring of Placements


1. The Care Plan

Where a decision is made to look after a child, the child must have a Care Plan.

The child’s Social Worker should have made arrangements for the Care Plan and other plans (e.g. Placement Plan/Placement Information Record) to be drawn up, as set out in Care Plan, Decision to Look After Procedures.


2. Notifications

After the child becomes Looked After (including changes in placement or placement endings), the Social Worker should also notify all those consulted and involved in the decision-making process. If not consulted in the decision making process, the Social Worker must notify the child’s Parent(s), significant relatives or friends and previous Carers.

The social worker is required to notify interested parties and agencies in advance of each placement or, where this is not possible, within 5 working days of placement.

The notifications required are as follows:

  • Notification of the placement will be sent by the child's social worker to the Designated Nurse for LAC, the Headteacher for the Virtual School for Children in Care, the relevant local Children's Services (if the placement is in the area of a different local authority) and the child's GP;
  • The allocated Independent Reviewing Officer or, if it is the first placement, the Independent Reviewing Officer Team, Unit of the placement. This notification will trigger the appointment of an Independent Reviewing Officer if it is the first placement, and the setting up of arrangements for a Looked After Review.

These notifications must be made in writing, advising of the placement decision and the name and address of the person with whom the child is to be placed.

The child's social worker should also notify - preferably in writing but it may be verbally - all those involved in the day to day arrangements for the child, including nursery/school, health professional and any other key workers actively involved with the child.

It will be necessary for the carer or the child's social worker to ensure the child is registered with a GP, Dentist and Optician, either retaining practices known to him or her (which is preferable) or in the area where they are placed.

In relation to a first Looked After placement it will also be necessary for the social worker to liaise with the Designated Nurse for LAC to arrange a Health Care Assessment (see also Health Care Assessments and Health Care Plans Procedure).

Before the placement, or within 10 working days, the social worker must also contact the relevant school or, where the child does not have a school place, the relevant education officer with a view to the initiating the development of a Personal Education Plan which should be available with the first 14 days of a child becoming looked after. (See also Education of Looked After Children Procedure).

For any new placement, every effort should be made to enable the child to remain at the same school unless there are reasons which would be detrimental to his or her wellbeing. 

The Nominated Officer must approve any change of placement The Nominated Officer / Service Manager must approve any change of placement affecting a child in Key Stage 4, except in an emergency/ where the placement is terminated because of an immediate risk of serious harm to the child or to protect others from serious injury. See the Table below in relation to Education for further details. 

The child's social worker will update the child's electronic records with the details of the placement.


3. Complaints and Advocacy

The Social Worker should ensure the child is given literature/information about:

  • The Children’s Social Care Services Complaints Procedure;
  • Advocacy Services provided by the authority.


4. Placement Planning Meetings

If the child is placed on a planned basis, the Social Worker must liaise with the Carer/Home to conduct a Placement Planning Meeting within 7 days of the placement.

If the child is placed in an emergency or outside office hours, the Social Worker must conduct an Emergency Review within 3 working days to review the suitability of the placement.

See Placement and Stability Meetings Procedure.


5. Support and Monitoring of Placements

If the child is placed out of hours, the EDT Worker must consult Carers/the Home and provide necessary immediate support to the placement.

The Social Worker must undertake a visit within a week of the placement and then at intervals required in Social Worker Visits Procedure.

If the child is placed with Foster Carers, the Carers will receive support and supervision as set out in the following chapter: Supervision and Support of Foster Carers Procedure.

End