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Returning a Child Home
Returning a child home
Prior to any return home of a child who has been 'looked after', clear assessment and planning will take place. This will include consideration of the child's view's to ensure that their best interest, safety, welfare and long term stability are addressed as priorities.
When a child has been looked after, whether subject to an order or looked after on a voluntary basis, prior to any plan to return home, a Returning Home meeting needs to take place in order to ratify that decision. This meeting at this time needs to be chaired by the Independent Reviewing Officer.
Guernsey and Alderney Child Protection Guidelines.
The Children (Guernsey and Alderney) Law 2008
- The Child's Care Plan should identify if returning the child home from being 'looked after' is in their best interest.
- No return home after being 'looked after' should happen in an unplanned way.
- Consultation with all relevant professionals who know the child and the family should take place prior to any planned return home.
- Where age appropriate the child's views must be gained on what they wish to be their care arrangements.
- All adults who hold PR need to have been consulted with in relation to the plan
- The child's best interests will be the paramount consideration in the planning process
- It is expected that social workers will be able to obtain the wishes and views of most children, this might be through; conversation, play work, observations of behaviour etc.
- This Care Plan will need to be endorsed by the Team Manager at appropriate managerial stage before any plan for a child to return home is implemented.
- The findings of the most recent assessments supporting rehabilitation must be signed off my the team manager and have been seen by the Independent Reviewing Officer.
- The Independent Reviewing Officer will follow the 'Returning Home from Being Looked After Agenda'.
- In the case of a young person who is moving onto Independence (aged 16 years plus) the LAC Pathway Planning will be followed.
- Consideration will also be given to whether there is a need to refer the matter to the Children's Convenor as there may be a need for a Care Requirement or an application to the Court for a child care order ie Residents Order.
- There will also be consideration given as to whether there is a need to convene a Child Protection Case Conference, this may be relevant for those children who were previously on the Child Protection Register, prior to being looked after
- Plans will be put in place to ensure appropriate support/monitoring is provided to the child and family, this could include a Child In Need Plan and/or Team Around the Child Meetings.
- The Returning Home meeting will need to consider the legal status/situation for the child (should this be relevant) and any legal steps that need to be taken prior to returning the child home
|It is identified that it is in a child's best interest to return home.||Social Worker||Computer/Through supervision|
|Further consideration for a child to return home is agreed.||Manager/Service Manager|
|Assessment is undertaken ie Viability Assessment, Rehabilitation Assessment, Family and Friends Assessment (nature of assessment will depend on what stage in process and where the child is to move to).||Social Worker||Computer/Assessment Completed||Within three months from time that Manager/Service Manager have endorsed the consideration|
Planning Meeting held to consider:
Service Manager/Independent Reviewing Officer
Looked After Childrens' Social Work Team Manager
|Computer/Minutes of Meeting||Within two weeks of assessment being completed|
|Ensure appropriate plans are updated to reflect that the child is to return home ie Child's Plan and/or LAC Pathway Plan and Care Plan|
|Computer||Within two weeks of planning meeting being|
|When the return home is at the point where the next step will result in the child or young person no longer being 'looked after' ie significant increase in contact or Court/Tribunal date set, the Independent Reviewing Officer will be asked to Chair a Returning Home meeting|
Independent Reviewing Officer
Before significant increase in contact
As soon as, Court/Tribunal date is set
|Provide relevant assessments (may include Child's Plan) and Care Plan to the Independent Reviewing Officer|
|Computer||Prior to 4 working days of Returning Home LAC Review|
|If rehabilitation is supported, the Independent Reviewing officer must inform admin of a change of LAC status for the child so that statistic can be maintained accurately||Independent Reviewing Officer/Admin||Computer||Same day|
The Independent Reviewing Officer will also ensure that the LAC status on CID is amended.
|Independent Reviewing Officer/Admin||Computer||Same day|
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