– describes how a kid's guardian or parents will interact with the youngster while they are in care
The Care Plan and the placement agreement should be created with input from the Foster Carers, the child, and the child's parents/guardians (if applicable). In addition, every kid must have a Personal Education Plan as part of the Care Plan (PEP).
Plan of Placement
This document outlines a kid's daily care plans that adhere to the Care Plan's goals. In addition, it contains information about the delegated authority (see section 1.7). A young person's care plan changes into their pathway plan to independence when they become 16 years old. Plans for additional/higher education, training, and employment will be covered in depth.
All elements of a child's care plan are evaluated at a meeting known as a statutory review. The Care Plan may only be modified in this thread.
Designated teachers are in charge of seeing that any decisions made about a child's education during a Statutory Review are carried out at the school and included to the child's PEP.
An Independent Reviewing Officer serves as the meeting's host (IRO). IROs are skilled social workers who oversee the Local Authority's evaluation, care plan execution, and monitoring.
The PEP must have been created by the time of the child's first review, which is held within the first four weeks of the child entering foster care.
People who are involved in a child's life, such as teachers, attend reviews.
Professionals who cannot attend in person, such as physicians and teachers, may submit written remarks.
If English is not a kid's first language, their IRO will arrange for an interpreter to accompany the child to the review.
The IRO should see that a kid receives the assistance they require if they experience speech or hearing problems.
Children receive a copy of the results of their review.
What Are the Roles And Responsibilities of the Virtual School Head?
The Virtual School Head (VSH) is the person responsible for carrying out the local government's duty to promote the educational achievement of all CLCs located in the local government, regardless of whether they live or are currently where to study (Children and Families Act 2014 amends the Children Act 1989). The head of the virtual school is responsible for the children in the care of his local government. Children placed outside the school district remain the responsibility of the municipality. Virtual principals also aim to promote the academic success of formerly cared-for children in their area by providing information and guidance to those with parental responsibilities for looked after children and the teachers assigned to work with them.
the Local Authority tracks and evaluates the educational development of CLA as if those kids went to a single school
if a child on their register is being cared for by the local authority of the VSH, the head teacher and authorized teachers in the school are notified
social workers, designated teachers and schools, caregivers, and IROs are aware of their roles and duties in initiating, producing, evaluating, and updating the child's PEP and how they contribute to meeting the requirements listed in that PEP
all CLA, regardless of location, have current, efficient, and high-quality PEPs focused on educational results
that everyone who is in charge of fostering the welfare of the children under the authority's care views their educational success as a priority
that the Pupil Premium money given to CLA is properly targeted to raise CLA's attainment and close achievement and progress disparities with their peers
information exchanged between experts, parents, caregivers, and young people conforms with privacy and confidentiality laws and promotes CLA's educational aspirations
Services And Assistance
Virtual schools for various local authorities provide a variety of services and assistance, such as:
helping caregivers, social workers, and IROs hold CLA to high standards so they may reach their full academic potential
collaborating with commissioners to guarantee that fostering, care, and educational programs offer top-notch, individualized experiences that support academic success
educating schools about the significant impact they may have on the educational and general outcomes for children looked after
ensuring that the leadership teams and school governors are aware of their legal obligation to ensure that designated teachers have the necessary training for their position
encouraging collaboration between authorized instructors and social workers to provide PEPs of the highest caliber
providing training in a wide range of subjects for caregivers, social workers, designated teachers, schools, and IROs, such as details on school admission policies, information on special educational needs, information on attendance and expulsions, information on homework, management of any challenging behavior in relation to educational settings, promotion of positive educational and recreational activities, and assistance in encouraging kids to have aspirations for their future education
creating a working environment for CLA that considers the child's viewpoints as appropriate for their age and level of comprehension.
What Are a Designated Teacher's Duties And Responsibilities?
The designated teacher (DT) in a school is in charge of encouraging the academic success of looked after and previously looked after children. The DT is in charge of assisting school personnel in determining what kind of support this cohort may require in order to learn and succeed. The roles of the designated teacher:
serves as the primary point of contact inside the school to encourage collaboration with others such as social workers, Virtual School Heads, and parents/caregivers, and recognizes the significance of each job
guarantees that all staff is aware of the emotional, psychological, and social repercussions of loss and separation from birth families, that certain children may struggle to form relationships with adults and peers, and how this can affect behavior and social interaction
fosters a culture in which looked-after and formerly looked-after children think they can achieve and aspire to further and higher education. As a result, everyone dealing with this cohort has high expectations and hopes for them
ensures that the young person has a say in the development of learning objectives, that they may discuss their progress, and that they are encouraged to take responsibility for their own learning
encourages strong home-school relationships by communicating with the child's caregiver or the person with parental responsibility about how they may support their success, focusing on effective communication with caregivers
provides teachers with assessment and personalized teaching tactics tailored to individual pupils
ensures that looked after and previously looked after children are given priority in one-on-one tuition agreements
is in charge of developing, implementing, monitoring, and reviewing the looked-after child's Personal Education Plan (PEP) inside the school and ensuring that the PEP is up to current and accessible in time for the Local Authority assessment of the child's overall care plan
assists looked after and formerly looked after children in adjusting to school and making seamless transfers to other schools or colleges, including making arrangements for prompt information sharing
ensures that the school does all in its power to promote educational stability, such as encouraging attendance, preventing exclusion, and removing obstacles to accessing the general activities and experiences that the school provides to all of its pupils
helps to design and review entire school policies to ensure that they do not unintentionally disadvantage looked after and formerly looked after children
ensures, in collaboration with other staff, that school processes to assist learning are effective and well understood and that school rules do not mistakenly disadvantage looked after and formerly looked after children
The Designated Teacher should be a certified teacher who has undergone an adequate induction period and is currently working in the school as a teacher. In order to fulfill their function, the governing board must guarantee that school leadership provides them with enough assistance. They are entitled to training and development to react to the special teaching, and learning needs of looked after and formerly looked after children and to enhance the understanding of everyone in the school who is likely to be engaged in enabling this cohort to achieve.
The DT should be a member of the teaching staff with the necessary seniority, professional experience, and position to give leadership, training, information, and guidance to others in order to affect the teaching and learning of looked after and formerly looked after children.
The role of the DT in Personal Education Plans is discussed in our sections on Effective PEPs.
What Are Foster Cares' Roles And Responsibilities?
The Foster Carer is responsible for the child's day-to-day care. Foster Caregivers are in charge of the child's physical and emotional requirements, as well as ensuring that they attend the right school, college, or playgroup and that their health needs are satisfied. The degree of responsibility will vary depending on the length of time the kid is put with the caregiver, the age of the child, the amount of experience of the Foster Carer, and the level of involvement of the parent in the child's life. Foster parents have a significant role as the children in their care's "first educators."
The Fostering Service Regulations (2002) and National Minimum Standards govern foster care (2002). A typical foster placement agreement contains the following expectations: support the child's/young person's welfare and treat them as a cherished family member
keep the youngster safe
no corporal punishment or improper punishments
ensure that the child/young person is encouraged and assisted in the following:
practice their religion
adhere to cultural customs and speak their first language
learn their family history and cherish their background and ethnic difficulties
attend school/college/work and reach their full potential
maintain communication with family members and those who are important to them (unless stipulated otherwise in the placement agreement)
develop skills and knowledge to equip them for adulthood and independent life at a suitable age
arrange for the child/young person to obtain medical/dental/optical treatment as needed, and allow them to be inspected as required by the relevant authorities
ensure that the child/young person has access to a healthy diet and exercise opportunities according to their ability.
do not allow the child/young person access to harmful, illegal, or improper goods in the home, such as firearms, pornographic films, or narcotics.
to guarantee that any information supplied to Foster Carers about a child/young person is kept secret.
to maintain a record of occurrences concerning the child/young person
to attend appropriate child protection conferences, planning meetings, and CLA reviews involving the child/young person, submit written reports if asked and assist the child/young person in preparing for reviews and other key meetings.
Expectations of Foster Caregivers
Foster caregivers are also anticipated to:
Encourage a child's sense of self-worth.
Consider the youngster as a unique individual.
Help a youngster develop a strong sense of self.
Spend one-on-one time with a youngster.
Allow the youngster to form a stable relationship with you.
Foster trust by using a mature and consistent approach.
Encourage your youngster to make new friends.
Encourage them to join clubs or groups to socialize and create support networks.
Expectations of Foster Carers
With particular reference to education, Foster Carers are supposed to:
Every child in care is assigned a social worker. On the day when a child is placed in care, the social worker assumes parental responsibility on behalf of the local authorities (see section 1.7). This involves ensuring that the child's needs are satisfied, their welfare is protected, and they are encouraged to reach their full potential.
Social workers are legally obligated to ensure that the kid receives enough emotional and physical care. This includes:
Making certain that the child's or young person's welfare is protected.
Ensuring that they receive care that fulfills their immediate requirements.
Ensuring that they are receiving enough education.
Ensuring that they receive regular medical examinations.
Ensuring that communication with the child's relatives and friends is maintained.
Making decisions about the child's care and future.
The child's social worker will regularly visit the child and foster caregivers to fulfill these tasks. Legally, the social worker must see the kid within one week after placement and then every six weeks for the first year. Following that, social work visits should not be more than three months apart. Foster caregivers might also seek more visits.
A care plan is put in place by the social worker. This care plan must include information regarding the child's educational requirements and the activities required to address those needs. This is usually in the form of a Personal Education Plan, which stays in effect during the child's care. Section 2.4 discusses PEPs and how to make them work.
Supervising Social Workers
A social worker supervises each foster carer. These are also referred to as family placement workers or connection workers. Supervising social workers are in charge of managing their fostering service's fostering resources. They support and challenge foster caregivers, and their tasks and responsibilities include the following:
communication with children's social workers
recruiting new foster carers - conducting evaluations of persons who have requested to be foster carers - assisting foster carers in identifying training requirements
assisting Foster Carers who have practical or emotional requirements as a result of fostering children and young people.
providing support and information if allegations or concerns are raised about a Foster Carer or their practice - assessing and monitoring the needs of the entire foster family, including the sons and daughters of foster carers - supervising Foster Carers' work - conducting annual reviews with Foster Carers
The Fostering Network recommends that monitoring sessions be held once a month.
The Fostering Network (2009) Working with social workers: information for foster carers.
Understanding Parental Responsibility And Delegated Authority
Parental responsibility, which is defined in Section 3 of the Children Act 1989, says
“All the rights, duties, powers, responsibilities and authority which, by law, a parent of a child has in relation to a child and his/her property. “
This implies that a person with parental duty is accountable for the child's care and well-being, and that person, as well as anybody else with parental responsibility, can make crucial choices regarding the child's life until a court ruling states otherwise.
Local Authorities share parental responsibility with the birth parents for children in care under a Care Order, Interim Care Order, or Emergency Protection Order. The local government may limit the parent's ability to exercise parental responsibility and veto specific parental decisions if required.
If a kid is subject to a Care Order, his or her parents or guardians are not permitted to remove the child from care unless the local government agrees. A kid's parents or guardians and the child himself or herself have the right to petition the court to terminate a Care Order. All Care Orders expire when a child reaches the age of 18, however, some may be terminated earlier.
When a Local Authority has parental responsibility for a child in care, the child's social worker takes on that role and makes choices for the kid. However, the LA may arrange for the Foster Carer to take over part of their tasks. This is known as 'delegating authority.'
Many foster children and young people have voiced a desire to grow up in 'regular' households, free of the laws and bureaucracy that limit their options, cause unnecessary delays, and make them feel different from their peers. The Children Act of 1989 was revised in 2013 to tighten and clarify the legislative guidelines on delegated authority, and it defines three sorts of decisions:
1. Day-to-day Parenting
Such as health, education, and leisure decisions (including permission slips for school trips and activities).
Unless there is a compelling reason not to, all day-to-day decision-making should be outsourced to the child's caregiver (and/or the child if they can make these decisions for themselves). Exceptions and justifications should be included in the placement plan where day-to-day choices are not entrusted to the caregiver. There is no expectation that local governments should replicate risk assessments if risk assessments have been routinely performed by organizations organizing/supervising the activity, such as school excursions or vacations.
2. Routine But Long-term Decisions, Such as School Selection
The decision of which school to attend is preferably collaborative and will be determined by the child's long-term plans. If long-term foster care is planned, the school should fit with the Foster Carer's family life and be appropriate for the kid. The placement plan must clearly state who can make specific choices concerning a child.
3. Significant Events, Such as Surgery
Foster Carers are legally permitted to "do what is reasonable in all the circumstances of the case for the aim of safeguarding or promoting the child's wellbeing." This implies that if no agreement has been reached on what to do in an emergency, the Foster Carer may do whatever is "appropriate" to protect the kid. According to statutory guidelines, what is reasonable will be determined by the urgency of the situation and the feasibility of consulting a person with parental responsibility.
When major events are known ahead of time, their decision-making process should be outlined in the placement plan.
The Significance of the Placement Plan
The legislation compels local governments to incorporate any arrangements for the delegation of power from the Local Authority to the Foster Carer in the placement plan, which details the arrangements for the child to live with and be cared for by the Foster Carers. The placement plan should assist both the Foster Carer and the school in understanding Foster Carers' choices.
Schools must thus be familiar with the child's placement plan so that they understand which choices may be made by the Foster Carer and which must be made by the child's social worker.