Moving to Another Placement

Untitled Document


The Care Planning Standard
Regulation 14

Regulation 5 – Engaging with the Wider System to Ensure Each Child's Needs are Met


This chapter covers when a child or young person is making a planned move (i.e. one that is agreed within the Care Plan) to another Children's Home or to another provision of Looked After Care. Information on the processes to be followed when children move in an emergency is also included.

For care leavers see Preparation for Leaving Care Procedure.


  1. Decision Making and Notice Period
  2. Arrangements for the Transfer or Discharge
  3. Notifications
  4. Aftercare/Contact

1. Decision Making and Notice Period

Children must remain in the home unless it no longer meets their needs as set out in the Care Plan, or the home has been unable to deliver the services required to meet child's needs.

Before any change of placement or transfer to another home is made the following people must be consulted:

  • The child;
  • The child's Social Worker;
  • The child's Independent reviewing Officer (IRO) (who may decide to convene a Looked After Review before any decision is made to move the Child);
  • To avoid disruption in education, the Virtual School Head must approve of any change of placement affecting a child in Key Stage 4;
  • The social worker should notify/consult the child's parents / carers.

(NOTE: if a Child is moved in an emergency or the placement is terminated because of an immediate risk of serious harm to the child or to protect others from serious injury; and it is impossible to consult people listed above, they must be notified within 1 working day. If a Child is moved out of the home temporarily, they should be treated as if they are still living at the Children's Home in which they were placed and their placement cannot be terminated without the agreement of the placing authority as described below):

Where it appears that the young person will benefit from a transfer from one Home to another, the Home's Manager should consult with relevant the Senior Manager before any discussion takes place either with the young person or the Social Worker. Once a decision in principle has been agreed, an alternative internal placement should be identified. At this point discussion will take place with the placing authority Social Worker outlining the reasons for the proposed move. A placement move can only take place once approval from the placing authority has been received in writing. A senior manager can give approval for a move of placement in the event of an emergency but must discuss this with the placing authority on the next working day.

For a temporary move out of the home, it must be remembered that the child will remain under current Care Plan and the staff should discuss with the child that expectations such as house rules, education etc. still apply.

Any decision to terminate a young person's placement and request that s/he be discharged and moved to another home must be approved by a Senior Manager.

Normally, young people will remain in the existing home for a minimum of 28 days after the decision to move has been reached to enable proper planning to take place. In exceptional circumstances however it may be necessary for a young person to move immediately. In such circumstances, the Home's Manager must consult the social worker but the final decision will rest with a Senior Manager.

Agreement to the change in placement / move must be issued by the placing authority in writing.

2. Arrangements for the Transfer or Discharge

Assuming that the social worker and IRO have been consulted, the Existing Manager should liaise with the New Manager and take all reasonable steps to ensure the young person's transfer or discharge is managed sensitively and that the move is a positive experience.

The young person and parents should be consulted and kept informed of all key decisions and arrangements in relation to any transfer or discharge. If possible, the young person and parents should undertake visits to the new Home/Placement and should be provided with information such as the Statement of Purpose or Children's Guide.

The Existing Manager should liaise with the following people to ensure that plans and records (see below) are completed or brought up to date before the young person moves:

  • The social worker;
  • Parents or those with Parental Responsibility;
  • The young person;
  • The New Manager;
  • Virtual School Head;
  • Other relevant people/agencies, e.g. Personal Adviser, advocate.

The Plans or records that must be brought up to date or completed by the social worker or others, and made available for the New Manager / carer, are:

For transfers between Homes in the same authority, the Existing and New Home Managers must liaise with each other to ensure that all appropriate arrangements are made, for example:

  1. The young person's Placement Plan - the New Home Manager is responsible for this but the Existing Home Manager should contribute/offer advice on plans/strategies that have been used. As a minimum the Placement Plan must be completed before or upon admission. The exiting Home Manager must produce an End of Placement report within 3 days of the child's discharge;
  2. The Existing Home Manager should ensure that the young person's file is brought up to date, collated, tidied then passed to the New Home Manager;
  3. If it appears necessary, the New Home Manager should arrange a Planning Meeting, preferably before the move/transfer but within 7 days. See Placement Planning Meetings Procedure;
  4. If there is a risk that the young person may go missing or absent, the New Home Manager should arrange for a Risk Assessment to be completed;
  5. The New Manager should liaise with the social worker to ensure arrangements are in place for the young person to be registered with a GP, Dentist and Optician (see Health Notifications and Access to Services Procedure) and should liaise with the Existing Home Manager to obtain information/arrangements for any medication or other healthcare arrangements;
  6. The New Home Manager should check to ensure that the young person has had a Health Care Assessment in line with set out in Health Care Assessments and Plans Procedure, and liaise with the social worker as necessary if this is required;
  7. The New Home Manager should ensure the young person is provided with:
    • A copy of the Children's Guide;
    • A copy of the Placing Authority's Complaints Procedure;
    • A Discharge Clothing List;
    • Details of an independent advocate;
    • All personal items and belongings (excluding withheld items).

For all transfers/discharges within our care or to other placements, the Existing Home Manager should ensure the following arrangements are made:

  1. That the young person takes all his/her clothing and personal belongings or arrangements are made for them to be passed to the New Home Manager. The Existing Home Manager must ensure that the young person's belongings/clothing are packed in a luggage case or other appropriate packaging;
  2. Where children have been with our care for an extended period, memento albums and photographs and moments about the home should be prepared for them so they have a record of their period of life at the home;
  3. If the young person is discharged from our care, the Existing Home Manager must ensure that the young person's file is brought up to date, collated, tidied and archived;
  4. The Existing and New Home Manager must ensure that the Designated Manager (Transfers) and others listed in Section 3, Notifications are notified of the transfer/discharge.

3. Notifications

The New Home Manager should liaise with the social worker to ensure that notifications of the placement are sent (by the social worker) to the CCG, Local Education and Children's Services Departments in the area where the child is placed if the move is into another Local Authority Area; these notifications must be made in writing advising of the placement decision and the name and address of the Home where the child will be placed.

The social worker should also notify the young person's parents and significant relatives or friends, and should liaise with the New Home Manager to arrange contact with the young person. NOTE: No contact may be permitted between the young person and his/her parents, relatives or friends unless agreed with the social worker and set out in the young person's Placement Plan.

4. Aftercare/Contact

Any arrangements for aftercare or contact between our Care staff and the young person or his/her parents/family must be agreed with the social worker and set out in the young person's Placement Plan.