6 STATEMENT OF PURPOSE FOR ADOPTION 2020/2021 – The Director: Children and Community Resilience submitted a report seeking approval of the annual review and update of the Statement of Purpose for Adoption 2020/2021.
The Adoption Service was required by The Children Act 1989 Guidance; Adoption Regulations and the National Minimum Standards (Adoption) 2014, to have in place a Statement of Purpose that was reviewed on a regular basis and updated as appropriate.
The revised Statement of Purpose for Adoption 2020/2021 had been reviewed and updated where required. The main areas updated were:
• Service User Feedback had been updated
• The contact details of the Registered Provider had been updated
• An update had been provided with regards to North Lincolnshire’s current position and progression in respect to becoming part of a Regional Adoption Agency.
The Adoption Young Persons Statement of Purpose 2019/2020 had also been reviewed and updated where required. The key area updated was:
• A child/young person friendly update had been provided with regards to North Lincolnshire’s current position and progression in respect to becoming part of a Regional Adoption Agency.
There had been no other major revisions made to either document.
Resolved - (a) That the revised Statement of Purpose for Adoption 2020/2021 be approved, and (b) that the change of Register Provider be approved.
7 STATEMENT OF PURPOSE FOR FOSTERING 2020/2021 - The Director: Children and Community Resilience submitted a report seeking approval of the annual review and update of the Statement of Purpose for Fostering 2020/21.
The Fostering Service was required by the Care Standards Act 2000, Fostering Services: National Minimum Standards (NMS) 2011 and Regulation 3 of the Fostering Services Regulations 2011 to have in place a Statement of Purpose that was reviewed on a regular basis and updated as appropriate.
The Fostering Statement of Purpose had been reviewed and updated where required. The main areas updated were:
• The progress made by the Fostering Service in achieving positive outcomes for children had been reviewed and updated
• The details of the Responsible Individual had been updated
• Updated recruitment and retention activities had been included.
The young person friendly version of the document has also been reviewed and updated in line with these changes.
There had been no other major revisions made to either document.
Resolved - That the revised Statement of Purpose for Fostering 2020/2021 be approved, and (b) that the change of Responsible Individual be approved.
8 INDIVIDUAL REVIEWING OFFICERS SERVICE ANNUAL REPORT 2019/2020 - The Director: Children and Community Resilience submitted a report providing a summary update on the Independent Reviewing Officers Service Annual Report 2019/2020 and seeking approval to publish the report as per statutory guidance.
The work of the Independent Reviewing officers was a statutory function as detailed in the Independent Reviewing Officer Handbook 2010. The Independent Reviewing Service delivered the following functions to all Children in Care within North Lincolnshire:
• To undertake an initial Child in Care review within 20 working days of a child entering care
• To undertake further Child in Care reviews within three months and thereafter six monthly
• To determine if a review was required following any significant change in a Child in Care’s circumstances
• To undertake visits to Children in Care to ascertain their understanding of their care plan and to gather their views, wishes and feelings
• To ratify care plans and offer independent advice and recommendations
• To fulfil records and decisions distribution requirements
The Annual Report 2019/20 followed a standard format and set out a range of information about the service, including the extent to which it complied with regulation and best practice, and what the service helped the council learn about the broader provision for children in care. The report set out the key points in the Annual Report.
Resolved - (a) That the key points in Independent Reviewing Officers Service Annual Report 2019/2020 be noted, and (b) that the publication of the report, as per statutory guidance, be approved.
9 ONE FAMILY APPROACH - The Director: Children and Community Resilience submitted a report seeking endorsement to develop the One Family Approach Hub.
The One Family Approach had been developed and endorsed by senior leaders across health, education and social care at the Integrated Children’s Trust, and approved by the Cabinet Member (minute 23 refers).
The One Family Approach sought to build upon the established and successful partnerships in North Lincolnshire, that for several years had delivered good and outstanding services for children, young people, and their families.
One Family Approach reoriented the role of professionals providing help and placing families more strongly at the centre. The primary role for helping vulnerable families was enabling self-help via information and advice and promoting equal access to the local community offer and where necessary community based hubs. The trusted professionals around children and families helped provide this informal help - for example a childcare professional, teacher, health visitor or school nurse.
If more focused help was needed, locality-based targeted services worked to enable the family to self-help and adopt a flexible and responsive approach to strengthening the support around children. This could include for example, enabling a family to access appropriate advice and guidance, their entitlements to free childcare or a parent to understand and find their own solution.
If a specialist response or set of professional skills was required for a child or family, this would adopt the same One Family Approach. The help must be early, swift, and build resilience in the network around the whole family so that it could withdraw when no longer needed, enabling the family to remain together and independent in their community.
In the context of the One Family Approach above, the specific proposal for consideration was to develop a new ‘Hub’ and offer for enabling children and young people ‘on the edge of care’ to stay with their families and in their local community. This Hub provided accommodation to bring together a range of highly skilled professionals, to work alongside children and families in line with the One Family Approach to build upon the child and family’s strengths, create and repair relationships, to enable resilience and create sustainable change.
Resolved - That the development of the One Family Approach Hub be endorsed.