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April 2017

Updated Chapters
Chapter Name Details
Policies, Values and Principles This chapter was transferred from the documents library to the main body of the manual at Section 1, Policy, Values and Principles.
Service Description - Local Guidance This document has been reviewed and updated and should be re-read throughout.
Safeguarding Children and Young People from Sexual Exploitation This chapter was reviewed and updated and should be re-read. A link has been added to the updated definition of CSE and Guide for Practitioners (DfE, 2017). A new Appendix A: Children's Social Care Management of CSE Risks has been added.
Children and Young People Aged 0-25 with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities The chapter was updated - a link to the updated Care and Support Statutory Guidance (DoH) was added.
Direct Payments This chapter was reviewed – a link was added to adult services Somerset direct payments policy.
Short Breaks This chapter was reviewed and updated. It has been substantially updated throughout and should be read in its entirety. In Relevant Guidance a link was added to Friendship For All (The Children’s Society). This provides freely downloadable, nationally piloted and evaluated resources to strengthen carer training to increase friendship in the lives of children.
At Risk of Care Panel - Local Guidance This chapter was reviewed and updated, the appendices only have been amended to reflect the change of terms of reference of the At Risk of Care Panel which has replaced the Placement Panel.
Placements in Secure Accommodation This chapter was amended to acknowledge the President of the High Court’s judgement regarding applications in English courts for Secure Accommodation placements in Scotland. (See Section 4.1, Placement Request, Identification and Approval).
Notifications from Other Local Authorities/Placement Providers This chapter was reviewed and updated to reflect local processes.
Looked After Reviews This chapter was 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 was 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, June 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.
Behaviour Management and Safe Caring in Residential Care This chapter was reviewed and slightly updated to reflect local processes.
Restrictive Physical Intervention in Residential Care This chapter was reviewed and slightly amended to reflect local processes.
Inter Country Adoption

In Section 3, Initial Meeting the DfE have published Intercountry Adoption and Resident Status Requirements which set out the minimum requirements, however entry clearance requirements vary depending upon the circumstances of each case and prospective adopters will need to obtain their own independent legal advice to establish the requirements that apply to their individual circumstances.

In Section 4, Formal Approval, a link was added to Intercountry adoption: means test form which contains information on how to apply for a fee reduction for people who wish to adopt a child from overseas and who earn £45,000 per year or less.

In Section 12, After Approval information has been added on the Intercountry Adoption Forms: checklist for adoption which details the paperwork adoption agencies must include in the intercountry adoption applications they submit to DfE.

Applications for Special Guardianship Orders

This chapter was reviewed and updated to include clarification on the level of parental responsibility extended to the Special Guardian. Further detail has been added with regard to who may apply for Special Guardianship.

A link has also been added to the DfE Special Guardianship Guidance which includes details of the Adoption Support Fund as the Fund now covers therapeutic support for children living in England, who were previously in care immediately before the making of a Special Guardianship Order. A link has also been added to the Adoption Support Fund.

List of Agency Decision Makers, Designated Managers and Nominated Officers These details were updated.
New Chapters and Features
Chapter Name Details
Relinquished Children This is a new chapter added to the procedures manual.
Removed Chapters
  • Short Break Guidance for Disabled Children and Young People - Local Guidance.

Next update: October 2017


2016 Amendments

2015 Amendments