Tel: 01527 836 910

Submit to Submit to Facebook Share on Twitter


Open Consultations

Current Consultations - January 15


Revisions to working together to safeguard children - England

Launch date 6 January 2015
Respond by 3 February 2015

About this consultation

This consultation document seeks views about three proposed changes to the statutory guidance. The government is not consulting on the updates and clarifications set out in Annex A. Following this consultation, the government proposes to update and replace the current statutory guidance Working Together to Safeguard Children revised and published in 2013.

The three proposed changes being consulted on are:

  • the referral of allegations against those who work with children;
  • notifiable incidents involving the care of a child; and
  • the definition of serious harm for the purposes of serious case reviews.

The current guidance can be viewed by clicking on this link:

This is statutory guidance which aims to help professionals understand what they need to do under the law, and what they can expect from one another, to safeguard children. It focuses on the core legal requirements and it makes clear what individuals and organisations should do to keep children safe. It does not include practice guidance, or detailed guidance about what action professionals should take in response to specific situations. These are matters best left to professional judgement, taking account of the unique circumstances and factors involved in each particular case.

The government would like to hear your views on these proposals.

Respond online

Please use the online system wherever possible.

Visit to submit your response

Other ways to respond

If for exceptional reasons, you are unable to use the online system, for example because you use specialist accessibility software that is not compatible with the system, you may download a word document version of the form and email it or post it.

By email

By post

Working Together Consultation
Department for Education
Floor 1, Sanctuary Buildings
Great Smith Street
London SW1P 3BT

The consultation closes on at 5.00pm on 3 February 2015.

Revised Statutory Guidance on the education of looked after children published – England

The Department for Education has published revised statutory guidance on the education of looked after children.

It can be found here:

The revised guidance details the duty on local authorities and Virtual School Heads (VSH) to promote the educational achievement of the children they look after, including those placed out of authority.

This guidance replaces statutory guidance issued in March 2010 and reflects the now statutory nature of the VSH role. Some of the key duties in the guidance include local authorities ensuring that VSHs are in place and that they have the resources, time, training and support they need to discharge the duty effectively.

Local authorities must also have robust procedures in place to monitor the attendance and educational progress of the children their authority looks after, and Children in Care Councils should regularly share the educational experiences and issues raised by looked after children.

Areas also covered in the guidance are pupil premiums, school admission, school exclusions and supporting transitions from care.

Guide to ‘Staying Put’ arrangements for fostered young people published - England

A new guide has been launched, explaining the implementation of the recently introduced 'Staying Put' arrangements which allow fostered young people in England to remain in their placements until age 21.

Published by the Children's Partnership, the voluntary and community sector strategic partner to the Department for Education, Staying Put – a good practice guide has been written for everyone involved in making and supporting staying put arrangements in England. It will be particularly relevant to practitioners and managers in children's social services, independent reviewing officers, foster carers and looked after young people.

'Staying Put - a good practice guide' is available from:

Care Act 2014: Launch of Care and Support Consultation – England

The Department of Health is seeking views on how local authorities should deliver the care and support reforms in the 2014 Care Act.

Under the Care Act, local authorities will have a duty to consider the needs of children living in households where there is an adult who has a disability or impairment that requires help or care as part of a “whole family assessment”. The Act also enables children to have their own carers' needs assessment carried out, and introduces a new right for young carers aged 16 to 18 who are transitioning to adulthood to have their specific needs assessed in light of how their role might change.

The closing date for the consultation is 5 August 2014.

For more information and a link to respond to the consultation visit

NEWS FLASH – Civil Service Apprenticeships announced

The Civil Service is about to organise a new round of recruitment for their apprenticeship scheme. There are 200 Civil Service apprenticeship placements for people 18 to 21 who want to work in government. This would be a wonderful opportunity to encourage care leavers to apply!

Criteria is that you must be:

  • a non-graduate
  • have 5 GCSEs, grades A* to C including English language and maths
  • aged between 18 and 21 on 31 August 2014
  • be able to start in September 2014

You can register your interest to get an email when applications open.

You’ll need to apply between 28th January and 19th February 2014.

Further details in link below:

Improving Permanence for Looked After Children


On 4th December; the Secretary of State for Education, Michael Gove announced that he intends to place a new legal duty on local authorities to provide support for every young person who wants to stay with their foster parents until their 21st birthday - giving local authorities £40million over the next three years to put the support arrangements in place.

The measures will be added to the third reading of the  Children and Families Bill which is due to be debated in the House of Lords later this year, which will become law from April 2014. The full details of the proposed measure will be announced later. In the meantime, the situation for Looked After Children reaching the age of 18 remains as per the Guidance issued in May 2013 which can be found on the FosterTalk Website by following this link:

FosterTalk Limited, Registered Company in England and Wales
10 The Courtyard, Buntsford Gate, Bromsgrove, Worcestershire, B60 3DJ
Registered Company Number: 06318354