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1.2.8 Guidance on the Referral and Assessment of Siblings


Contents

  1. Opening Up Referrals
  2. Writing up the Initial Plan/Child's Plan for Groups of Children


1. Opening Up Referrals

It is important that a child is not assessed in isolation and that siblings are taken into account. However, there is a difference between a child's siblings being referenced in a child's assessment and them actually being the subject of an assessment themselves.

Siblings/other children should not be referred for assessment unless the social worker has a reason to believe that one or more of them is in need and therefore requires an assessment. The social worker should discuss the situation with a team manager who will then make the decision on whether to open up an assessment on other siblings/children in the household. Their reasons must be based on sound evidence in relation to the presenting needs and whether these affect the other children.

Decisions should be kept under review as circumstances and needs change.

If the decision is made to open up assessments on other children in a household, then each child should be assessed separately.

If the decision is made not to open up assessments on other children in a household, these other children should be referenced in the referred child's assessment.


2. Writing up the Initial Plan / Child's Plan for Groups of Children

Each child who has an open case should have her/his own single assessment and corresponding child's plan. When assessing sibling groups, single assessments must not be copied across all of the children. However for ease of recording a social worker can copy the child's environment and family sections from one open record to the other(s). Where there are differences in the child's environment and family these sections must be recorded separately. The child development section for each child must be recorded separately.

End