Amendments

October 2019

Updated Chapters
Chapter Name Details
Need to Know Procedure – Essential Reporting for Safeguarding and Children’s Services This document has been reviewed and updated and should be re-read as new.
Children’s Consultation and Participation The Relevant Guidance section has been updated to add supporting resources with regard to children’s consultation and participation.
Threshold Document - Continuum of Help and Support This document has been updated.
Initial Contacts and Referrals This chapter has been updated.
Assessments This chapter has been revised to reflect updated guidance on Assessment in Working Together to Safeguard Children.
Care and Supervision Proceedings and the Public Law Outline

This chapter has been amended in to reflect changes from ‘Practice Direction 27a - Family Proceedings: Court Bundles (Universal Practice to be Applied in the High Court and Family Court)’, in relation to the required maximum length of certain court documents, (unless otherwise specifically directed by the court). In addition, a new subsection of Section 4.1, Local Authority Documentation - ‘Final Care Plan’ provides further detail on the importance of recording information on the Care Plan which will help the child, parent or the child’s carer understand why decisions have been or are being made.

It has also been amended in to reflect HHJ Greensmith’s comments regarding M and N (Children: Local authority gathering, preserving and disclosing evidence) [2018] EWFC 40 (1 June 2018)). (See Section 9, Good Local Authority Practice During Proceedings).

Recording Policy and Guidelines This chapter has been amended to reflect HHJ Greensmith’s comments regarding M and N (Children: Local authority gathering, preserving and disclosing evidence) [2018] EWFC 40 (1 June 2018).
Child in Need Plans and Reviews Amendments have been made to Section 4, Children with Disabilities, this section should be read in full.
Children and Young People Aged 0-25 with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities

This chapter has been updated in line with the Children and Social Work Act 2017 and revised statutory guidance which require schools, through the designated teacher to provide support to previously Looked After Children.

A previously Looked After Child is one who is no longer looked after in England and Wales because they are the subject of an Adoption, Special Guardianship or Child Arrangements Order which includes arrangements relating to with whom the child is to live, or when the child is to live with any person, or has been adopted from ‘state care’ outside England and Wales.
Unaccompanied Migrant Children and Child Victims of Trafficking and Modern Slavery This procedure has been updated to reflect local practice with acknowledgement to Nottingham Children's Services.
Decision to Look After and Care Planning This chapter has been amended to reflect Section 3 of the Care Planning and Care Leavers (Amendment) Regulations 2014.  The Care Plan must identify whether there is reason to believe the child has been trafficked or is an unaccompanied asylum seeker (see Section 2.1, The Care Plan - Contents).
Ceasing to Look After a Child

This chapter has been updated in line with the Children and Social Work Act 2017 and revised statutory guidance.

These changes relate to the status of ‘previously Looked After Children’. A previously Looked After Child is one who is no longer looked after in England and Wales because they are the subject of an Adoption, Special Guardianship, Child Arrangements Order or revocation/discharge of a Care Order which includes arrangements relating to with whom the child is to live, or when the child is to live with any person, or has been adopted from ‘state care’ outside England and Wales.

Previously Looked After Children are entitled to support from their school through the Designated Teacher (see Section 2.5, Children Who Move into Permanency).

Permanence Planning Guidance

This chapter has been updated iin line with the Children and Social Work Act 2017 and revised statutory guidance.

These changes relate to the status of ‘previously looked after children’. A previously Looked After Child  is one who is no longer looked after in England and Wales because they are the subject of an Adoption, Special Guardianship or Child Arrangements Order which includes arrangements relating to with whom the child is to live, or when the child is to live with any person, or has been adopted from ‘state care’ outside England and Wales.

Children subject to a Adoption, Special Guardianship or Child Arrangements Order are entitled to support from their school, through the designated teacher.

Remands to Local Authority Accommodation or to Youth Detention Accommodation This chapter has been updated in relation to placing young people in custody, see Section 2.3, How to Request a Transfer or Placement Review.
Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority Claims for Looked After Children Section 4, Making an Application, now advises child social workers to initiate applications to the Criminal Injuries Compensation Authority through LGSS Legal who will manage the application through to completion.
Social Worker Visits to Looked After Children This chapter has been amended to include a link to the Leaving Care and Transition Procedure in relation to Personal Adviser visits to ‘Relevant’ or ‘Former Relevant’ young people.
Education of Looked After and Previously Looked After Children

This procedure has been updated to reflect amendments made by the Children and Social Work Act 2017.

These changes relate to the status of ‘previously looked after children’ i.e. a previously looked-after child is one who is no longer looked after in England and Wales because s/he is the subject of an adoption, special guardianship or child arrangements order which includes arrangements relating to with whom the child is to live, or when the child is to live with any person, or has been adopted from ‘state care’ outside England and Wales. The chapter includes a new Section 15, Mental Health and a new Section 8, Safeguarding the Looked After Child at School. A link has been added to the National Curriculum Assessments at Key Stage 2.

In addition the chapter reflects the statutory guidance Keeping children safe in education (KCSIE) 2018, as it relates to Looked After Children and guidance regarding data protection and safeguarding as set out in Data protection: a toolkit for schools (Open Beta: Version1.0) (August 2018).
Leaving Care and Transition

Amendments have been made in:

  • Section 5, Leaving Care Assessment of Need - in relation to children who are victims of trafficking or unaccompanied asylum seeking children;
  • Section 7, Reviews of Pathway Plans - in relation to Relevant/Former Relevant young people moving to 'unregulated' accommodation; and
  • Section 8, Personal Advisers - in relation to frequency of visits by Personal Advisers.
Looked After Children and Young People in Contact with Youth Justice Services This chapter has been updated in relation to placing young people in custody, see Section 7.7, How to Request a Transfer or Placement Review.
Responsibilities of the Local Authority to Former Looked After Children and Young People in Custody This chapter has been updated in relation to placing young people in custody, see Section 3.8, How to Request a Transfer or Placement Review.
Adoption Support

This chapter has been updated in line with the Children and Social Work Act 2017 and revised statutory guidance which require schools, through the Designated Teacher for Looked After Children, to offer support to previously looked after children.

A previously looked-after child is one who is no longer looked after in England and Wales because subject of an Adoption, Special Guardianship or Child Arrangements Order which includes arrangements relating to with whom the child is to live, or when the child is to live with any person, or has been adopted from ‘state care’ outside England and Wales).
Adoption Reviews Section 5, The Conduct of Adoption Reviews (paragraph 1.f) has been amended to reflect the status of adopted children as being ‘previously looked after’ when considering their educational needs. A link to DfE guidance on Promoting the Education of Looked After and Previously Looked After children has also been added.
Applications for Special Guardianship Orders

This chapter has been updated in line with the Children and Social Work Act 2017 and revised statutory guidance which require schools, through the designated teacher to provide support to previously Looked After Children

A previously Looked After Child  is one who is no longer looked after in England and Wales because they are  the subject of an Adoption, Special Guardianship or Child Arrangements Order which includes arrangements relating to with whom the child is to live, or when the child is to live with any person, or has been adopted from ‘state care’ outside England and Wales.
List of Agency Decision Makers, Designated Managers and Nominated Officers This listing has been updated.

Next Update: April 2020

February 2019

Updated Chapters
Chapter Name Details
Children’s Services Policies, Values and Principles A new Section 2, Corporate Parenting has been added in response to the DfE, Applying Corporate Parenting Principles to Looked-after Children and Care Leavers – Statutory Guidance (Feb 2018). It includes the seven corporate parenting principles set out in the guidance.
Confidentiality Policy This guidance has been reviewed and updated following the introduction of the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) and Data Protection Act 2018.
Assessments Section 4, Communication has been updated to include reference to parents with learning disabilities.
Care and Supervision Proceedings and the Public Law Outline This chapter has been updated to provide some emphasis on parents who lack capacity and added links to the President of the Family Division, Family Proceedings: Parents with a Learning Disability note, and a relevant link to working with parents who have a learning disability (see Section 2.1, Principles). In Related Guidance, a link has been added to Research in Practice supporting information and guidance on the Social Work Evidence template (SWET).
Death or Serious Injury to a Child (Looked After and Child In Need) This chapter has been amended. From 29 June 2018, local authorities in England must notify the national Child Safeguarding Practice Review Panel within 5 working days of becoming aware of a serious incident.
Recording Policy and Guidelines This guidance has been reviewed and updated following the introduction of the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) and Data Protection Act 2018. A link to the Children First Northamptonshire Privacy Policy has also been added
Case Records and Retention Section 1, The Case Record has been updated in line with Adoption and Care Planning (Miscellaneous Amendments) Regulations 2018, which permits the transfer of a copy of the child’s case record (or part of that record) to another adoption agency when the local authority considers this to be in the interests of the child.
Access to Records This procedure has been refreshed and revised and should be re-read in its entirety.
Electronic Recording of Meetings and Conversations This guidance has been reviewed and updated following the introduction of the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) and Data Protection Act 2018.
Family Agreements Good Practice Guidance Reference to Family Group Conference has been replaced with reference to Family Network Meetings.
Unaccompanied Migrant Children and Child Victims of Trafficking and Modern Slavery This procedure has been re-written and revised.
Relinquished Children Section 5, Consent and Competency has been updated to include additional information on parental capacity to consent, in line with High Court case-law.
Deprivations of Liberty This procedure has been revised.
Decision to Look After and Care Planning Additional information has been added in to Section 1.3, Section 20 Accommodation, in line with recent case-law.
Placements in Secure Accommodation on Welfare Grounds This chapter has been updated to fully reflect the updated guidance ‘Secure children’s homes: how to place a child aged under 13 (July 2018)’ (see Section 6, Placements of Children under the age of 13 years).
Social Worker Visits to Looked After Children Section 2, Exceptions has been revised to set out more clearly the circumstances where visiting requirements differ from those set out in Section 1, Normal Frequency.
Looked After Reviews Section 9, The Role of the Looked After Review in Achieving Permanence for the Child has been amended to reflect the outcome of a High Court Judgement in respect of children who were subject to Section 20 and where there were concerns of significant delays in their planning for permanence. The court noted the IROs’ recognition and action over a number of reviews but acknowledged that a more robust response had been needed.
Health Care Assessments and Plans A new Section 3.5, Consent to Health Care Assessments has been added.
Leaving Care and Transition This procedure has been revised and should be re-read in its entirety.
Fostering Panel This procedure has been updated to reflect local practice.
Adoption Panel This guidance has been reviewed and updated following the introduction of the General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) and Data Protection Act 2018.
Adoption Case Records Section 3, Security, Retention and Sharing of Records has been updated in line with Adoption and Care Planning (Miscellaneous Amendments) Regulations 2018, which provides that an adoption agency may disclose an adoption case record to another adoption agency for purposes related to either agency’s functions as an adoption agency. Further information has been added in relation to adoption records where an Adoption Order is not made.
Applications for Special Guardianship Orders This chapter has been updated to reflect the Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman good practice points to follow when working with Special Guardians. A link to the full report ‘Firm Foundations: Complaints about Council Support and Advice for Special Guardians (Local Government and Social Care Ombudsman) (May 2018)’ has been added into the Relevant National Guidance section of this chapter.
Life Story Books Guidance This chapter has been fully reviewed.
Later Life Letters This chapter has been fully reviewed.
New Chapters and Features
Chapter Name Details
Guidance to Ensure Consistency of Recording Documentation on Capita One for SEND and EIP Teams This document has been added to the manual.
Capita One Naming Protocol for SEND, EIP, EPS Teams This document has been added to the manual.
Child Missing From Education Practice Manual This document has been added to the manual.
DA Process This document has been added to the manual.
MISPER Process This document has been added to the manual.
Child Missing From Education General Enquiries This document has been added to the manual.
EIPT Process for Permanent Exclusion This document has been added to the manual.
IO Process for Managed Moves This document has been added to the manual.
Attendance and Enforcement Policy This document has been added to the manual.
Attendance Monitoring Process This document has been added to the manual.
Attendance Prosecution Process This document has been added to the manual.
Attendance and Prosecution Contacts Process This document has been added to the manual.
ICU Interview Plan This document has been added to the manual.
Bail Warrant Process This document has been added to the manual.
SEND Support Service Operating Procedures This document has been added to the manual.
SEND Support Service 6 and 12 Month Review Process This document has been added to the manual.
SEND Support Service Allocation Process This document has been added to the manual.
SEND Support Service Closure Process This document has been added to the manual.
SEND Support Service Handover Process This document has been added to the manual.
SEND Support Service Initial Visit Process This document has been added to the manual.
SEND Support Service Referral Process This document has been added to the manual.
SEND Support Service Unnamed Consultation Recording This document has been added to the manual.
Smoking Policy for Foster Carers and Children and Young People in Care This policy has been added to the manual.

August 2018

Updated Chapters
Chapter Name Details
Supervision Practice and Service Standards (Supervision Policy) This policy has been updated.
Section 47 Enquiries This chapter has been updated and should be re-read.
Allocation of Work and Transfer between Teams – Case Transfer and Closure Section 3, Case Closure has been updated.
Care and Supervision Proceedings and the Public Law Outline Section 4.2, Case Analysis has been updated to reflect the ‘permanence provisions’ of the Care Plan added by s.8 Children and Social Work Act 2017 (amending section 31(3B) Children Act 1989) which a court is required to consider when deciding whether to make a Care Order.
Complaints, Compliments and Representations This chapter has been substantially updated and should be re-read.
Child in Need Plans and Reviews This chapter has been updated by adding a new Section 4, Children in Need Moving to Another Authority - Principles. Information and communication is important between the respective local authorities to ensure appropriate services continue for the child and family and, where relevant, any risk of harm is recognised and identified with the receiving local authority. It should be noted that the responsibility for safeguarding and promoting the welfare of the child lies with the local authority where the child is to be found.
Decision to Look After and Care Planning Section 2.1, The Care Plan – Contents has been amended to reflect the additional ‘permanence provisions’ of the Care Plan (s.8 Children and Social Work Act 2017) which a court is required to consider when deciding whether to make a Care Order.
Permanence Planning Guidance Section 5, Assessing and Planning for Permanence has been updated to reflect the additional ‘permanence provisions’ of the Care Plan (under s.8 Children and Social Work Act 2017) which a court is required to consider when deciding whether to make a Care Order.
Placements with Parents This chapter has been updated to reflect that the DBS has no eligibility for a standard or enhanced check for birth parents or other adults living in the household. However, the Local Authority has a requirement under the Care Planning, Placement and Case Review (England Regulations) 2010 to obtain information about unspent convictions and cautions before placing a child back with parents (see Section 1.2, Assessment and Checks before Placement).
Placements Outside England and Wales Relevant Guidance has been added to this chapter.
Contact with Parents / Adults and Siblings Section 2, Different Types of Contact has been updated to take account of the use of mobile communication with regards to contact.
Assessment and Approvals of Foster Carers This chapter has been slightly amended in regard to the social worker assessing issues.
Review and Termination of Approval of Foster Carers Section 2, Consultation with Foster Carer before the Review and Section 7, Updates on Checks have been updated.
Placement for Adoption Section 1, Planning for Permanence has been updated to reflect the additional consideration (added by s.9 Children and Social Work Act 2017 amends section 1(4)(f) of the Adoption and Children Act 2002) into the list of considerations that whenever a court or adoption agency is coming to a decision relating to the adoption of a child), of the relationship which the child has with relatives, with any person who is a prospective adopter with whom the child is placed and with any other person in relation to whom the court or agency considers the relationship to be relevant.
Non Agency Adoption Section 4, Other Checks has been updated.
Access to Birth Records and Adoption Case Records Section 4, Access by Birth Relatives to Adoption Case Records has been updated.
Intermediary Services This chapter has been slightly amended.
Fostering for Adoption, Concurrent Planning and Temporary Approval as Foster Carers of Approved Prospective Adopters Section 4.1, Duty to Consider Fostering for Adoption Placement has been updated to reflect the additional consideration (added by s.9 Children and Social Work Act 2017 into the list of considerations whenever a court or adoption agency is coming to a decision relating to the adoption of a child), of the relationship which the child has with relatives, with any person who is a prospective adopter with whom the child is placed and with any other person in relation to whom the court or agency considers the relationship to be relevant.
List of Agency Decision Makers, Designated Managers and Nominated Officers This listing has been updated.
New Chapters and Features
Chapter Name Details
Section 85/86 (Children Act,1989) Welfare Checks for Children Accommodated in Educational Residential or Health Provision This procedure outlines the action to be taken by Children’s Services, in accordance with Section 85 and Section 86 Children Act 1989, following notification by a Health Authority or an Education Service that they are accommodating a child or young person.
Reunification for Looked After Children This procedure highlights the importance of ensuring proper assessments undertaken and plans are in place when a child is being reunited with their family, and seeks to provide an overview of the activities carried out by children’s social care.


February 2018

Updated Chapters
Chapter Name Details
Need to Know Procedure - Essential Reporting for Safeguarding and Children’s Services This procedure has been replaced with an updated version.
Children’s Consultation and Participation This chapter has been entirely revised and updated and should be re-read in full.
Initial Contacts and Referrals This chapter has been revised to set out in more detail the timetable and partnership requirements associated with effectively managing contacts and referrals.
Allocation of Work and Transfer between Teams An explicit statement has been added to sub-section 3.1, Case Closure Tasks to make clear that no case should be closed whilst actions remain outstanding.
Electronic Recording of Meetings and Conversations Section 4, Good Practice has been entirely revised and should be re-read.
Unaccompanied Asylum Seeking Children Section 3, Assessment has been updated to make clear that in advance of undertaking an age assessment for an unaccompanied asylum seeking child, local authorities must seek Home Office assistance with verifying the authenticity of identity documents e.g. travel documents or a birth certificate. A link to the relevant contact details for local authorities has been added. The statutory guidance has been updated to link to the Care of Unaccompanied Migrant Children and Child Victims of Modern Slavery: Statutory Guidance for Local Authorities (DfE 2017). The Modern Slavery Act 2015 is referenced in relation to age assessments. In addition, a link has been added to Securing British Citizenship for Looked After Children (NRPF Network).
Families with No Recourse to Public Funds A link has been added to Securing British Citizenship for Looked After Children (NRPF Network).
Ceasing to Look After a Child Additional detail regarding Northampontshire expectations and processes has been added throughout this chapter.
Permanence Planning Guidance Section 6, Final Care Planning Meeting has been revised in the interests of clarity.
Placements with Connected Persons Section 5, Assessment and Approval of Connected Persons as Foster Carer has been revised to reflect required Northamptonshire DBS processes.
Advocacy and Independent Visitors A new sub-section 1.2, Appointment of an Advocate has been added to this chapter.
Looked After Reviews This chapter has been amended to fully reflect the Children Act 1989 Guidance and Regulations - Volume 2: Care Planning, Placement and Case Review with respect to the circumstances as to when a Looked After Review should be brought forward. The list is not exhaustive (see Section 2, Frequency of Looked After Reviews).
Notifications of Significant Events A note has been added to Section 1, Children Placed in Foster Care and Section 2, Children Placed in Children’s Homes to make clear that before any notifications are submitted to Ofsted they must be forwarded to Northamptonshire managers listed.
Health Care Assessments and Plans

The following new sections have been added to this chapter:

  • Section 5, Children in Mental Health Settings;
  • Section 6, Health Passports.
Change of Name of a Looked After Child This chapter has been entirely revised and updated and should be re-read in full.
Assessment and Approvals of Foster Carers Section 8, After the Panel Recommendation has been updated to clarify that the decision as to the suitability of the applicant must be made within 7 working days of receipt of the panel’s recommendation and final set of panel minutes – The Children Act 1989 Guidance and Regulations - Volume 4: 5.39 and Standard 14 (14.9) Fostering panels and the fostering service’s decision-maker.
Placement for Adoption This chapter has been amended to emphasise ‘procedural fairness’ as a key aspect of the adoption planning process in respect of ensuring parents are provided with information throughout, including the dates of placement/proposed changes of a child’s Status, etc. This follows the outcome of a judicial review ([2017] EWHC 1041 (Admin)). (See new Section 4.2, Procedural Fairness).
New Chapters and Features
Chapter Name Details
Northamptonshire Children's Services Procedures Manual: Practitioner Guidance Notes This link has been added to the manual.
Northamptonshire Children's Services Procedures Manual Maintenance Practice Guidance This link has been added to the manual.
Supervision Practice and Service Standards (Supervision Policy) This policy has been added to the manual.
Non Recent (Historic) Abuse This chapter has been added to this manual and should be read throughout.
Harmful Sexual Behaviour

(Northamptonshire Safeguarding Children Partnership Procedures Manual)
This link has been added to the manual.
Guide to Identifying, Understanding and Responding to Potentially Harmful Sexual Behaviours in Children and Young People

(NSCP Link)
This link has been added to the manual.
Resolution and Escalation Process (IRO and CP Chair) This chapter has been added to the manual.
Family Agreements Good Practice Guidance This guidance has been added to the manual.
Children Living Away from Home With Other Families

(Northamptonshire Safeguarding Children Partnership Procedures Manual)
This link has been added to the manual.
Adolescent Risk Management

(NSCP Link)
This link has been added to the manual.
Deprivations of Liberty This chapter has been added to the manual, as a draft.
Mental Capacity This link has been added to the manual.

September 2017

Updated Chapters
Chapter Name Details
Looked After Children and Young People in Contact with Youth Justice Services Section 4.5, Young People Remanded to YDA who are already Looked After has been revised and updated.


August 2017

Updated Chapters
Chapter Name Details
Need to Know Procedure – Essential Reporting for Safeguarding and Children’s Services This document has been updated.
Family and Friends Care Links to the Family and Friends Statutory Guidance and the Family Rights Group Publication Initial Family and Friends Care Assessment have been added to this chapter.
Initial Contacts and Referrals Section 1, Initial Contacts has been revised to make clear that initial contacts may relate to children in need of support and/or safeguarding.
Assessments This chapter has been entirely revised and updated and should be re-read in full.
Allocation of Work and Transfer between Teams This chapter has been entirely revised and updated and should be re-read in full.
Applications for Emergency Protection Orders Significant Northamptonshire amendments have been made to Section 1, Introduction and Section 3, Preparation of the Application. Capitalisation throughout the chapter has also been revised.
Legal Planning Meetings Additional Northamptonshire detail has been added to the following sections:
  • Section 3, Who Can Convene Planning Meetings;
  • Section 6, Recording of Legal Planning Meetings;
  • Section 7, Review/Subsequent Legal Planning Meetings.
Death or Serious Injury to a Child (Looked After and Child In Need) This chapter has been updated in line with the requirement to notify Ofsted of any serious childcare incident using the Ofsted online notification form. Section 3, Needs of Social Worker / Team / Managers / Carer /Significant Others has been revised to include substantial Northamptonshire detail.
Case Records and Retention This chapter has been reviewed to note the Independent Inquiry into Child Sexual Abuse requires all institutions to retain their records relating to the care of children for the duration of the Inquiry (see Section 2, Retention and Confidentiality of Records).
Private Fostering This chapter has been amended in to add clarity to the definition of private fostering with regards to the legislation and children under 16 who spend more than 2 weeks in residence during holiday time in a school. A new Section 15, International Aspects, and a new Section 16, Language Schools / International Students have also been added along with further Northamptonshire detail throughout the chapter.
Young Carers This chapter has been entirely revised and updated and should be re-read in full.
Children and Young People Aged 0-25 with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities This chapter has been entirely revised and updated and should be re-read in full.
Decision to Look After and Care Planning This chapter has been amended to reflect the outcome of an Appeal Court hearing (2017) with respect to ‘consent’. The court recognised that the term ‘consent’ itself was not used in Section 20. However, it described previous court observations as ‘good practice guidance’, emphasising its judgment should not alter the content or effect of these (see Section 1.3.1, Obtaining Parental Consent).
Permanence Planning Guidance

The following changes have been made to this chapter:

  • Section 3.5, Special Guardianship Orders – additional information added;
  • Section 6, Final Care Planning Meeting – new section added;
  • Section 7.9, Re B-S (Children) [2013] EWCA Civ 1146 – new section added.
Placement Planning, Placement Stability and Disruption Meetings A new Section 2, Placement Stability Meetings has been added to this chapter. Additional Northamptonshire detail has also been added throughout the chapter.
Placements with Connected Persons This chapter has been entirely revised and updated and should be re-read in full.
Placements in Secure Accommodation on Welfare Grounds This chapter has been entirely revised and updated and should be re-read in full.
Placements with Parents Section 1.2, Assessment and Checks before Placement has been updated to indicate that consideration should be given as to whether the home environment is safe for the child including where relevant, the need for a risk assessment of any pets and the environment in which they are kept.
Delegation of Authority to Foster Carers and Residential Workers After a period of review this chapter has been adopted as operational.
Advocacy and Independent Visitors An additional sub-section 2.4, End an Appointment has been added to this chapter along with additional Northamptonshire detail throughout the chapter. A link to the Children’s Society ‘Advocacy services for children and young people – a guide for commissioners’ has also been added. This guide outlines the legislative requirements of local authorities in the provision of advocacy support to children in need and looked after children.
Social Visits (including Overnight Stays) This chapter has been entirely revised and updated and should be re-read in full.
Health Care Assessments and Plans A link to Children’s Attachment: Attachment in Children and Young People who are Adopted from Care, in Care or at High Risk of Going into Care, NICE Guidelines (NG26) has been added to this chapter.
Staying Put A link to Staying Put: What does it mean for you? (Catch 22 National Care Advisory Service has been added to this chapter. This chapter has also been revised to more closely reflect Northamptonshire arrangements. In particular the term “Staying Put Host” is adopted throughout. The chapter should be re-read in full.
Fostering Statement of Purpose The link to this Statement of Purpose has been updated.
Supervision and Support of Foster Carers Section 5, Support Provided by the Supervising Social Worker (During Placement) has been updated to indicate that the Safer Caring Plan address any changes in household circumstances along with any health and safety issues including the addition of any new pets and the environment in which they are kept should be reviewed as required.
Assessment and Approvals of Prospective Adopters Section 5.3, Assessment has been updated to indicate that where the applicants have pets, a risk assessment should be conducted and any associated risks should be taken into account with regard to the pet itself and where the pet is kept. Where necessary, an independent assessment should be undertaken by a vet to establish whether a dog falls within the scope of the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991.
Placement for Adoption A link has been added to the RIPA Contact After Adoption materials.
Inter Country Adoption (Outsourced to ICA) This link has been updated throughout the manual.
Applications for Special Guardianship Orders This chapter has been entirely revised and updated and should be re-read in full.
Guidance on Payment of Adoption Allowance, Special Guardianship Order Allowances and Child Arrangements Order Allowances This chapter has been entirely revised and updated and should be re-read in full.
List of Agency Decision Makers, Designated Managers and Nominated Officers This listing has been updated.
New Chapters and Features
Chapter Name Details
Children’s Consultation and Participation This chapter has been added to the manual and is currently under review.
Police Powers of Protection This chapter has been added to the manual.
Relinquished Children This chapter has been added to the manual.
Elective Home Education Policy This policy has been added to the manual.
Removed Chapters
  • Developing Local Protocols for Assessment.


June 2017

Updated Chapters
Chapter Name Details
Placements in Foster Care Section 2, Placement Request and Section 3, Matching and Approval of Placement have been revised and updated.
Placements in Residential Care Section 2, Placement Process has been revised and updated.
Out of Area Placements Section 2, Approval of Placement by Nominated Officer/Director of Children’s Services has been revised and updated. Links throughout the chapter have also been revised.
Placements Outside England and Wales Section 2, Placement Decision has been revised and updated. The links throughout the chapter have also been revised.
Education of Looked After Children Section 14, Children and Young People with Medical Conditions has been updated. Links have also been updated throughout the chapter.
List of Agency Decision Makers, Designated Managers and Nominated Officers This listing has been updated.


February 2017

Updated Chapters
Chapter Name Details
Assessments This chapter has been updated to reflect the outcome of a judgment following an application to remove a child at birth. The judge highlighted ‘good practice steps’ to undertaking assessments and issuing care proceedings in respect of the removal of a child at birth, including the assessment process (see Section 11.1, Pre-birth ‘Good Practice Steps’). The linked information regarding the International Child Abduction and Contact Unit (ICACU) has also been updated.
Care and Supervision Proceedings and the Public Law Outline This chapter has been updated to reflect the outcome of a judgment following an application to remove a child at birth. The judge highlighted what were thought to be ‘good practice steps’ to issuing care proceedings in respect of the removal of a child at birth (see Section 3.1, Pre-birth Planning and Proceedings).
Legal Planning Meetings This chapter has been updated to reflect the outcome of a judgment following an application to remove a child at birth. The judge set out what were thought to be ‘basic and good practice steps’ (see Section 2, Considerations).
Provision of Accommodation to Homeless 16 and 17 year olds The link to Northamptonshire Housing Protocol – Homeless 16 & 17 Year Old Young People has been updated.
Young Carers Titles and hyperlinks in this chapter have been updated.
Children and Young People Aged 0-25 with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities The listing of Related Guidance has been revised and updated.
Direct Payments The reference to the DOH, Care and Support Statutory Guidance has been updated to link to the 2016 edition.
Short Breaks A link to Friendship For All (The Children’s Society) has been added to this manual.
Decision to Look After and Care Planning A link has been added to the ADCS/Cafcass Practice Guidance for the Use of Section 20.
Placements in Secure Accommodation Section 4.1, Placement Request, Identification and Approval, has been revised to reflect current arrangements for identifying a placement.
Looked After Reviews This chapter has been amended to note The Law Society guidance ‘Attendance of solicitors at local authority Children Act Meetings’ and their Code of Conduct where the child or family who attend reviews are supported by a legal representative (see Section 8, Independent Reviewing Officer's Responsibilities).
Appointment and Role of Independent Reviewing Officers This chapter has been updated in relation to the role of the Independent Reviewing Officer in line with the Children Act 1989 Guidance and Regulations - Volume 2: Care Planning, Placement and Case Review (2015). In particular, the IRO being sensitive to the close and active involvement of parents of a child looked after in a series of Short Breaks and problem-solving where there might be difficulties or issues.
Education of Looked After Children The reference to Supporting Pupils at School with Medical Conditions has been revised to link to the 2015 edition.
Personal Care and Relationships A link to the the NCB Practice Guidance: Supporting Young People with HIV Testing and Prevention has been added to Section 9, Sexually Transmitted Infections.
Applications for Special Guardianship Orders A link to the Special Guardianship Guidance has been added. Section 1, Introduction, has been revised to clarify the extent of responsibility held by Special Guardians and Section 2, Who May Apply? has also been revised and updated.
Policy for Payment of Allowances for: Adoption, Special Guardianship, Residence and Child Arrangements Orders This chapter has been updated.
List of Agency Decision Makers, Designated Managers and Nominated Officers This chapter has been updated.
New Chapters and Features
Chapter Name Details
Pre-birth Assessments  (NSCP Link - see: Local Protocols) This chapter has been added to this manual.
Concealed Pregnancies (NSCP Link - see: Local Protocols) This chapter has been added to this manual.
Children (Subject of a Child Protection Plan) Travelling Abroad This chapter has been added to this manual.
Electronic Recording of Meetings and Conversations This chapter has been added to this manual.

August 2016

Updated Chapters
Chapter Name Details
Assessments Section 2, The Purpose of Assessment has been revised to set out the requirement that assessments should consider any factors that may indicate that the child is or has been trafficked or a victim of compulsory labour, servitude and slavery (in line with the Modern Slavery Act 2015).
Legal Planning Meetings This chapter has been revised to reflect the guidance issued by Judge Munby (following his judgment in the matter of N (Children) (Adoption: Jurisdiction) [2015] EWCA Civ 1112) regarding good practice in the drafting and use of agreements under section 20 of the Children Act 1989.
Recording Policy and Guidelines This chapter has been extensively revised and updated and should be re-read in full.
Access to Records Additional detail has been added to this chapter, hyperlinks have been updated and Section 7, Applications by Parents has been significantly revised.
Children and Young People Aged 0-25 with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities The listing of Related Guidance has been revised and updated.
Direct Payments This chapter has been revised and updated and a new Section 7, Hospital Stays has been added.
Short Breaks This chapter has been significantly revised and updated throughout and should be re-read in full.
Unaccompanied Asylum Seeking Children Minor revisions have been made to this chapter to better reflect local arrangements. In section 3, Assessment, a reference has been added to the need to consider any issues that may indicate that the child is or has been trafficked or a victim of compulsory labour, servitude and slavery.
Families with No Recourse to Public Funds Section 2, Role of the Local Authority, has been revised to indicate that Needs Assessments should consider any issues that may indicate that the child is or has been trafficked or a victim of compulsory labour, servitude and slavery in line with the Modern Slavery Act 2015.
Decision to Look After and Care Planning This chapter has been revised to reflect the guidance issued by Judge Munby (following his judgment in the matter of N (Children) (Adoption: Jurisdiction) [2015] EWCA Civ 1112) regarding good practice in the drafting and use of agreements under section 20 of the Children Act 1989.
Ceasing to Look After a Child This chapter has been revised to reflect Judge Munby’s guidance (in the matter of N (Children) (Adoption: Jurisdiction) [2015] EWCA Civ 1112) regarding good practice in drafting and using agreements and appropriate management of discharge requests under Section 20 of the Children Act 1989.
Permanence Planning Guidance Additional information regarding the responsibility of Long-term Foster Carers to care leavers and those over 18 years of age has been added to Section 3.7, Long Term Fostering. Additional minor changes have been made throughout the chapter in the interests of clarity.
Placements in Residential Care Minor revisions have been made to this chapter to add detail and aid clarity. An additional sub-section, Emergency Placements has also been added to Section 2.3, Placement Planning.
Remands to Local Authority Accommodation or to Youth Detention Accommodation This chapter has been revised and updated to reflect amendments to the Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984 which were implemented on 26 October 2015.
Advocacy and Independent Visitors Additional detail has been added to this chapter.
Secure Accommodation (Criteria) Reviews This chapter has been revised to set out the appropriate arrangements for chairing Secure Accommodation Panels and the appropriate involvement of Independent Reviewing Officers.
Notifications of Significant Events The link to Schedule 7 Events and Notifications Table has been revised.
Contact with Parents / Adults and Siblings This chapter has been entirely revised and updated and should be re-read in full.
Overnight Stays and Social Visits Minor revisions have been made to this chapter and the material has been reordered in the interests of clarity.
Education of Looked After Children The listing of government guidance has been revised and updated.
Staying Put The reference to insurance has been revised and updated. Further minor changes have been made throughout the chapter in the interests of clarity.
Looked After Children and Young People in Contact with Youth Justice Services This chapter has been revised and updated to reflect amendments to the Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984 which were implemented on 26 October 2015.
Responsibilities of the Local Authority to Former Looked After Children and Young People in Custody This chapter has been revised to reflect changes in the Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984 which were implemented on 26 October 2015.
Adoption Support A link to the Adoption Support Fund has been added to this chapter.
Applications for Special Guardianship Orders Section 5, Planning Meeting, has been revised and updated to reflect the enhanced assessment and reporting requirements (for all applications made from 29 February 2016) as set out in the Special Guardianship (Amendment) Regulations 2016.
Fostering for Adoption, Concurrent Planning and Temporary Approval as Foster Carers of Approved Prospective Adopters Section 4.2, Considering Adoption for a Child has been revised to set out the required actions when there is there is any change to the circumstances of prospective carers, including relatives.
New Chapters and Features
Chapter Name Details
Whistleblowing to Ofsted about Children’s Social Care Services - Policy and Guidance for Whistleblowers A link to this policy and guidance has been added.
Child Safety Online: A practical guide for parents and carers whose children are using social media A link to this guidance has been added.


February 2016: Additional Amendments

Updated Chapters
Chapter Name Details
Court Reports in Adoption/Special Guardianship Guidance This chapter has been slightly updated in regard to the Special Guardianship (Amendment) Regulations 2016, in particular Section 3, Special Guardianship - Matters to be Dealt with in Report for the Court.