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4.5.3 Immediate Placement with Parents

Contents

  1. Key Points
  2. Procedure for Organising a Placement with Parents


1. Key Points

  1. There are limited circumstances in which the regulations allow the placement of the child or young person with parents before all the enquiries are completed, where this would avoid unnecessary upheaval and/or be in the best interests of the child.
  2. The regulations allow for a child or young person subject to a care or interim care order to remain in an existing placement whilst a decision confirming the continuation of that placement is under consideration. An example of this situation would be if a child or young person remained at home following, or pending, the outcome of care proceedings, even if a care or an interim care order was granted.
  3. The regulations require that the parent must be interviewed prior to the placement decision being made. Whilst the regulations acknowledge that not all information will be readily ascertainable in one interview, as much information as possible must be obtained.
  4. A placement decision must be made prior to the placement taking place, and all the requirements of the regulations must be complied with as soon as possible after the placement is made. Whilst there is no timescale set in the regulations for this, all enquiries and assessments should be completed within 6 weeks of the placement being made.
  5. A placement agreement does not have to be completed before an immediate placement is made, but a meeting to draw up the agreement should be held as soon as practicable. A copy of the agreement must be sent to the Service Manager with the completed assessment report within 6 weeks of the start of the placement.


2. Procedure for Organising a Placement with Parents

  1. The designated social worker discusses the possibility of making an immediate placement with their Team Manager/Area Manager, and if considered appropriate, the Team Manager/Area Manager consults with the Service Manager to obtain their verbal agreement to proceed.
  2. The social worker makes a visit to the parent(s)’s home to:
    • Interview the parent(s). The proposed arrangements should be discussed as fully as possible, and as much information as possible obtained about the parent(s)’ circumstances, in order to make a preliminary judgement about the suitability of the placement.
    • Inspect the accommodation, particularly the proposed sleeping arrangements.
    • Obtain information about other persons living in the household.

      Permission must be obtained from all members of the household aged 18 years and above to undertake the necessary checks with the Police Public Protection Unit. The designated social worker forwards a completed report to the Service Manager.
  3. The designated social worker forwards a completed report to the Service Manager.
  4. The Service Manager will record their decision on the report, which is then returned to the social worker and placed on the child’s file.
  5. The designated social worker completes all outstanding steps in the Placement Agreement and the Placement Procedure as soon as possible. All outstanding steps in the procedure “Preparation for Placement with Parents Procedure” must be completed within 6 weeks of the date of placement. 

End