Read on to find out more or get in touch with our expert Care Proceedings team for advice on your individual situation.
What Happens at a Child Protection Conference?
A Child Protection Conference will be led by the Conference Chair – a qualified social worker – who will go through the reports that will be shared in the meeting and answer any questions you may have.
At the beginning of the conference, everyone present will be introduced so that you’ll know who is in attendance and what their involvement will be. Each of the professionals at the conference will then take it in turns to share their thoughts and any concerns they may have regarding the child.
There will be opportunities for anyone to ask questions, including parents. If your child is present, they will also have a chance to express their opinions about the situation.
After discussing any worries or changes that will need to be made, the professionals present will make a final decision as to whether a Child Protection Plan is needed. Alternatively, if there is already a Child Protection Plan in place, they will decide if this should continue.
What if it’s Decided my Child Needs a Protection Plan?
If it’s determined that a Child Protection Plan is required, this will be put into writing and will set out:
- Who the key worker will be (typically the social worker)
- A list of concerns and why any change needs to happen
- What will need to be done to address the concerns
- The needs your child has and how they can be met
- Your needs as a parent and the support that can be put in place
- An initial timeframe for changes to be implemented
- The individual responsibilities of all people involved
After this, you’ll meet with a smaller core group of professionals regularly to further develop the plan and discuss the progress that’s been made.