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South West Safeguarding and Child Protection Procedures
South West Safeguarding and Child Protection Procedures South West Safeguarding and Child Protection Procedures

5.1.5 Process for Permanency Decision


This chapter provides specific guidance in respect of the Permanency Planning process


Permanence Planning Guidance

  1. The child's social worker will produce a recommended Permanency Plan in consultation with their team manager;
  2. This plan is presented to the 4 month Statutory Review;
  3. Whenever a permanency plan for a child less than 10 years old is not adoption then the Head of Service will also quality assure the plan;
  4. Where adoption is the plan, the child will have had an adoption medical prior to that review; the Child's Permanence Report (CPR) will be available at the review as will any expert reports;
  5. The CPR will be quality assured by the team manager and, ideally, by the Panel Adviser prior to the 4 month Statutory Review;
  6. Once completed, the social worker will ensure that all these documents are available in the child's records within the permanency planning folder (section 10 on the sans). The social worker will then alert by email the Independent Reviewing Officer (IRO) and the Agency Decision Maker (ADM - currently the Assistant Director);
  7. The Independent Reviewing Officer will quality assure the Care Plan and either support the plan or challenge the plan. When the latter occurs, the challenge will be addressed in the first instance by the team manager as per protocol;
  8. Once a plan in support of adoption is supported by the IRO then the IRO will complete the Independent Reviewing Officer's Summary of Permanency Decision and email the ADM;
  9. The child's social worker or team manager will email the ADM's personal assistant a that a decision is needed and provide a timescale for when final evidence needs to be filed with the court. The social worker will also alert the panel adviser to read the documents in the permanency folder. The panel adviser will also review the IRO's Summary document;
  10. The ADM will access the reports via the permanency planning folder and meet with the panel adviser to consider the reports. If the ADM has any queries or concerns the ADM will invite comments/representations from the appropriate professional which will include: the child's social worker and team manager; the IRO, the Medical Adviser or a lawyer;
  11. Finally the ADM will record his or her decision on the Agency Decision Form and inform the care planning team via email or face to face;
  12. Following any decision the ADM will arrange for a letter to be sent to birth parents informing them of the decision and these decisions will be recorded in a grid for monitoring purposes.