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4.11 Child Protection Review Conferences

RELEVANT CHAPTERS

Initial Child Protection Conferences Procedure

Professional Resolution and Escalation Protocol

AMENDMENT

This chapter was updated in March 2019 to recognise child protection plans should not be ended when significant assessments and pieces of work have not been completed (see Section 2, Criteria for Discontinuing the Child Protection Plan).


Contents

  1. Purpose
  2. Criteria for Discontinuing the Child Protection Plan
  3. Frequency
  4. Reports
  5. Attendance
  6. Administration
  7. Outcomes
  8. Minutes

    Appendix 1: Child Protection Conference and Looked After Review Combined Agenda

    Appendix 2: Child Protection Conference and Looked After Review Combined Agenda (for Chairs)


1. Purpose

The purpose of a Child Protection Review Conference is:

To review whether the child is continuing to suffer, or is likely to suffer, Significant Harm, and review developmental progress against the Child Protection Plan outcomes.

To consider whether the child protection plan should continue or should be changed.

A Child Protection Review Conference is conducted as per the Initial Child Protection Conference (see Initial Child Protection Conferences Procedure).


2. Criteria for Discontinuing the Child Protection Plan

In order to consider discontinuing the Child Protection Plan the Child Protection Review meeting must be quorate (see Initial Child Protection Conferences, Quorum). Child protection plans should not be ended when significant assessments and pieces of work have not been completed.

A child should no longer be the subject of a Child Protection Plan if:

For those children who are believed to have left the Country, the Social Worker must make all reasonable efforts to confirm the location of the child. Once confirmation is received a letter is sent by the Independent chair as a minimum, to all those agency representatives who were invited to attend the Child Protection Conference that led to the Child Protection Plan, advising that the CP plan is to be ended. In the interim, whilst the child’s location remains unknown, if the Child Protection Review Conference is due, it should still go ahead and the plan should continue. If the child’s whereabouts are not confirmed within a reasonable period of time a Service Manager will need to make a decision about ending the plan.

The Social Worker needs to notify parents and child where appropriate advising them of the decision.


3. Frequency

  1. Except in relation to 3 below, the first Review Conference should be held within 91 days of the date of the Initial Conference;
  2. Further reviews must be held at intervals of not more than 183 days, for as long as the child requires a Child Protection Plan;
  3. Where an unborn child has been identified as requiring a Child Protection Plan at a pre-birth conference, the first Review Conference should be scheduled to take place within 1 month of the child's birth or within 91 days of the pre-birth conference whichever is the sooner;
  4. An early Review Conference should be considered in the following circumstances:
    1. Where there is a further incident or allegation of Significant Harm to a child with a Child Protection Plan;
    2. If the Child Protection Plan is failing to protect the child or if there are significant difficulties in carrying out the Plan;
    3. Where there is a significant change in the circumstances of the child or family not anticipated at the previous conference and with implications for the safety of the child;
    4. Where the previous Conference was not quorate then the next conference must be held within a month of the non-quorate conference;
    5. If the plan is working really well and the core group via the Social Worker requests an early review to consider ending the plan.


4. Reports

Please see Initial Child Protection Conferences Procedure, Other Agency Reports to Conference and Before the Conference and At the Start of the Conference.


5. Attendance

Attendees should include the Chair and Core Group members. The relevant Children’s Services Team Manager should also attend the second review conference.

See Initial Child Protection Conferences Procedure.


6. Administration

Members of the Initial Child Protection Conference will be informed at the end of the Conference of the date of the Review Conference, which will also be recorded in the minutes. Arrangements for convening the conference are the same as for an initial conference (see Initial Child Protection Conference Procedure, When an Initial Child Protection Conference Should be Convened).

The Meeting Support Assistant will be responsible for the preparation of the minutes (see Initial Child Protection Conference Procedure, Minutes of Child Protection Conferences).

Each Child Protection Review Conference will set the date for the next review and note this date in the minutes.

If a Child Protection Review Conference decides that a child no longer requires a Child Protection Plan, the parents will be informed in person, if present at the meeting and in writing by the Independent Chair.

Any dissenting views or disagreements with this decision will be recorded in the minutes.


7. Outcomes

Every Review should consider explicitly whether the child continues to be at risk of suffering Significant Harm and therefore continues to need safeguarding through a formal Child Protection Plan. 

If not, then the child should no longer be the subject of a Child Protection Plan (see Section 2, Criteria for Discontinuing the Child Protection Plan).

If the child has been subject to a Child Protection Plan for 12 months then the Independent Chair and Team Manager discuss the need to meet and review concerns and progress (called a 12 month meeting) If it is decided that a meeting is not necessary then this decision is recorded in the child’s file by the Independent Chair. The 12 month meeting should be chaired by another Independent Chair to allow for increased independence. The meeting follows an agreed agenda to consider the initial reason for a Child Protection plan, progress and agree a way forward. The meetings are minuted by a Meeting Support Assistant and can include Signs of Safety mapping.

The Independent Chair will have the same decision making powers at the Child Protection Review Conference as at the Initial Child Protection Conferences - see Initial Child Protection Conference Procedure, The Decision Making Process. If the child remains subject to a Child Protection Plan consideration should be given to whether the category of harm still remains appropriate.


8. Minutes

Please refer to Initial Child Protection Conference Procedure, Minutes of Child Protection Conferences.


Appendices

Appendix 1: Child Protection Conference and Looked After Review Combined Agenda

Appendix 2: Child Protection Conference and Looked After Review Combined Agenda (for Chairs)

End