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1.4.3 Child Protection Plan, Visits and Core Group

AMENDMENT

This chapter was updated in August 2017, in particular information was added with regards to visits to children subject to a child protection plan must be visited by a Children’s social worker within a maximum of 15 working days. All visits to children/young people subject to Child Protection Plans should be recorded as Statutory Visit (Child Protection) in PROTOCOL case notes. It is important that the social worker indicates that the child has been seen by ticking the appropriate box in the Protocol case note. Home visits where the child has not been seen cannot be recorded as Statutory Visits.


Contents

  1. The Outline Child Protection Plan
  2. Child Protection Visits and Child Protection Plan
  3. The Child Protection Core Group and Child Protection Plan


1. The Outline Child Protection Plan

Working Together 2015 states that the purpose of the Initial Child Protection Conference (ICPC) is to bring together and analyse, in an inter-agency setting, all relevant information and plan how best to Safeguard And Promote The Welfare Of The Child.

The conference tasks include making a decision about the need for a Child Protection Plan.

If a plan is deemed necessary it is the task of the ICPC to draft this in outline, to identify the key worker and core group membership and agree the timescales for core group meetings.

  • The outline plan should clearly identify the risks that have been identified in the course of the conference that need to be addressed to make the child safer;
  • These risks will be presented as ‘issues’ and will reflect the high risk indicators (HRI) and relevant underlying risk factors (URF) that have emerged in the course of the conference;
  • The outline plan should also indicate the desired outcome from the intervention strategy and indicate the degree of improvement required to address the identified concerns;
  • The record of the ICPC should also identify, but not include in the plan, other issues relating to unmet need that require attention to promote the child’s welfare.


2. Child Protection Visits and Child Protection Plan

Every child/young person subject to a child protection plan must be visited by a Children’s social worker as follows:

  • Within a maximum of 15 working days.

All visits to children/young people subject to Child Protection Plans should be recorded as Statutory Visit (Child Protection) in PROTOCOL case notes. It is important that the social worker indicates that the child has been seen by ticking the appropriate box in the Protocol case note. Home visits where the child has not been seen cannot be recorded as Statutory Visits.

The Team Manager must ensure that children/young people subject to Child Protection Plans are visited at the required frequency. If a visit cannot be made within the outlined timescale, the Service Leader should be notified immediately.


3. The Child Protection Core Group and Child Protection Plan

Working Together 2015 states that it is the task of the Core Group to ‘further develop the outline plan and set out what needs to change, by how much and by when in order for the child to be preferred their needs met’.

  • The first Core Group Meeting should be held within 10 working days of the ICPC;
  • With the outline plan as a starting point (where the key issues and desired outcomes have been identified) and using the BwD SMART plan template, the detailed plan should be developed to indicate specifically what actions are required to achieve the desired outcomes;
  • The person/persons responsible for taking each action should be explicit and the timescale for completion identified. It would never be acceptable to use the term ‘as soon as possible’ or ‘ongoing’ in relation to timescales;
  • The detailed plan should also clearly identify the evidence that will demonstrate that the desired outcome has been achieved (i.e. it will be outcome focussed). This evidence will be in the form of practical, demonstrable things that will be visible and recognisable when changes have been made e.g. the house is cleaner, the child has gained weight, the parents mood has stabilised, the child’s attendance at nursery has improved, etc;
  • In order for plans to be effective they need to be of high quality and ‘owned’ by the whole core group (including parents/carers/interested others). To achieve this outcome, the outline plan drafted at the ICPC should be taken to the first Core Group where it will be developed into the detailed Child Protection Plan by the multi-agency group and the child’s parent/carer (clarifying issues in relation to actions, allocated responsibilities, timescales and evidence of achievement). Plans need to be written in clear, straightforward and easy to understand language which is accessible to professionals and family members alike;
  • Within 5 days of the first core group meeting the finalised detailed plan must be recorded on Protocol and sent to the Team Manager for authorisation;
  • When agreement is reached that the plan is fit for purpose the Core Group will implement the plan and take joint responsibility for carrying out the agreed tasks and assessing progress against desired outcomes with further Core Group Meetings taking place every 20 working days.

End