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Advice For Key Worker & A Lac


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Hello,

 

I was wondering if anyone could give me some advice please.

 

I start a new job as a leader soon. There is a LAC within the setting. He has already got a key worker assigned, the question is do i leave it be and leave him with his current key worker or do i take on the child as my one of my key working children bearing in mind that i am also the Designated Child Protection Officer.

 

Any advice would be much appreciated.

 

 

Thank you

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I take it LAC means looked after child?

 

Why do you think you should change this child's key person? Is there a problem with their relationship, or does it no longer meet his needs? What are the benefits to him of having you as his key person? Do these benefits outweigh the possible disadvantages that a change may cause him?

 

Obviously its hard to know what to advise when we don't know the child or the setting!

 

Maz

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I agree with Maz, what would be gained from changing Key Person? Have you discussed it with them? I'd think that the more people who are looking out for the child the better - many eyes and all that. Also gives you someone to talk to about your concerns, doesn't it?

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Hello,

 

Yes, sorry i did mean Looked After Child.

 

As far as i am aware the relationship is fine, I am new starter myself, but i know the child has a few problems and has got various agencies that follow the childs progress.

 

I was just wondering if it would be "best practice" to have the child under the same person that is the Child Protection Designated Officer.

I was also thinking it reduces the amount of information that is shared about the child, because as it stands surely i will need to be informed of anything to do with the childs care, however if there is another keyworker, then the information will be shared three ways, which is affecting confidentiality.

 

I'm really not sure as i may be reading too much into it, maybe it is just better left.

Edited by Guest
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Hello

 

Thank you for all your advice

 

That is a good point actually - i will ring them, the training was in a different area. So i'm not sure if it is the same or not. I usually find the training from one area to the next is done by different people, but mayb not with child protection.

 

 

Thank you

 

 

Z

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My gut feeling is that I would leave well alone if the relationship between the child and his key person is a solid one - another change in this little chap's life might well just be the straw that breaks the camel's back, if you get my drift.

 

Also I would worry about the message being sent out to the staff that they are not 'up to the job' of being a key person when the child has dificulties. After all, this member of staff will have worked hard to gain the child's trust and may well resent being sidelined. Also, would there be a chance that this child might be labelled in some way by your taking over as his key person?

 

As Possum says, it is good to have another person to discuss this child's progress with and as Designated Child Protection Officer, you may find it easier to fulfil your role from a distance rather than being closely involved on a daily basis.

 

Are there parallels here between your role and the Inclusion Co-ordinator's? Would you expect the Inclusion Co-ordinator to take over as a child's key person once the child was identified as having additional needs, or when concerns about their progress were first raised?

 

Its a difficult issue to resolve - I'll be interested to see what advice you are given by your local safeguarding team!

 

Maz

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Hi,

 

Yes i can see what you are saying, that is the last thing that i would want, i want to have a good solid friendly working relationship with staff & too share responsibility.

 

The only thing i think i would say, is yes, i do feel that although i have had SEN training. If i had a child with SENs, or the child was recently identified with having additional needs, i would be more than happy to have the SENCo take over the role of keyworker. Because they would have had the correct training in that situation.

 

 

Does that make sense - i don't know. it is hard to know what's best. I am just trying to be a pro-active leader. I also agree that it is good to be able to share information with a colleague.

 

Thank you for your comments and advice so far - :o

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I have to agree with happymaz here - the child need's stability and trust, and if he and his carers already have a good relationship with current keyperson this should continue.

 

Also you yourself are stepping into a new job, you will many other issues to contend with, such as settling in to the new role, getting to know your new team etc.

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Yes Louby Loo you are right - i do have a lot to learn about my new role and the setting.

 

I think i may have just found my answer in the PLA policy for LAC (the setting hasn't got this in place though). But it says that

 

" The designated person for looked after children is the child protection co-ordinator"

 

" The designated person ensures the key person has the information, support and training necessary to meet the LAC needs."

 

" The designated person and the key person liaise with agencies, professionals and practitioners involved with the child."

 

 

Sorry if i had looked at that first, i wouldn't have needed to ask you for advice, however i have learnt an awful lot since joining this fab forum a few weeks ago and see it as a way of finding out how other settings and practitioners work.

 

 

Many thanks

 

x

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Sorry if i had looked at that first, i wouldn't have needed to ask you for advice, however i have learnt an awful lot since joining this fab forum a few weeks ago and see it as a way of finding out how other settings and practitioners work.

Sometimes you just need to ask the question though and see what other people feel/think! That's what's so great about this forum - can you imagine ringing a colleague up at half past twelve at night for a philosophical chat about the key person/child relationship!?

 

And the fab this is that although you're asking questions tonight, in a bit you could be sharing your informed opinion with someone else on another issue at the next minute - no-one has the monopoly on the right ideas, and no-one has all the answers!

 

Maz

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Well Zoe31, no- one can say you're not dedicated............ reading the PLA policies at 12.30am!!!

 

It's good to share thoughts with other's, and that's what is good about this forum, as maz said no-one has all the answers....... And the good thing about questions like yours is that it makes us question out own practice too.

 

Good-luck with your new job. :oxD:(

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The only thing i think i would say, is yes, i do feel that although i have had SEN training. If i had a child with SENs, or the child was recently identified with having additional needs, i would be more than happy to have the SENCo take over the role of keyworker. Because they would have had the correct training in that situation.

In my preschool setting, I am the SENCO but I am not automatically keyworker to all SEN children. Often it is the keyworker who observes potential difficulties and I work with the keyworker who has already built a relationship with the child and carers.

All settings have their own way of doing things and I dont think there is a right or wrong way as long as the best interests of the child are being met.

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  • 3 years later...

hi

 

We have a lac just started at our preschool, I am the cpo and my supervisor is the childs keyworker. When the child started grandma, auntie and uncle came in with the child, since then the auntie always brings in and picks up the child. We where expecting to be contacted by social services or somebody, the auntie says the child had a social worker but not any more. As we have never been in this situation I need some advice on what to do and who to contact?

 

thanks janet

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I've only had one experience of this personally and my setting was told we would be contacted if we needed to be. We never were and it made us look very unprofessional with a local school the child was transferring to. My advice would be to ask for contact details of social worker and take the initiative yourself simply to ensure they are aware you are involved. Log all attempts to contact and find out if you should be convening a TAC meeting as we were told we should have done so within six weeks of child starting with us. You may find other agencies are responsible for this but it was awful feeling like we hadn't done what we were meant to, although we had no concerns about the child and he was developing very well.

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hi

 

We have a lac just started at our preschool, I am the cpo and my supervisor is the childs keyworker. When the child started grandma, auntie and uncle came in with the child, since then the auntie always brings in and picks up the child. We where expecting to be contacted by social services or somebody, the auntie says the child had a social worker but not any more. As we have never been in this situation I need some advice on what to do and who to contact?

 

thanks janet

 

Hi, Have you established who has PR, Who the child lives with & who has legal contact...this is an excellent way of fact finding as one question very much leads to another in a natural way...if its not with mum, why?, SS involvement? SW name, office, who else attends the meetings etc (if gran, auntie have custody then they will be fully informed of the details) when the last meeting was, next meeting, current stage of intervention, does little one see mum, is she allowed to collect/have unsupervised contact? What should you do if she turns up...does she know her child is at your setting? etc...all obviously in a gentle, non interrogational manner!

 

Be careful if taking the family's word r.e SW involvement (or lack of)...do your own research...the HV would normally be involved too. Don't assume you will automatically be co-opted on to the meetings...the family may not have informed SS of his attendance with you...and SS are severely over stretched!

 

You need to fully understand this childs situation in order to support them..what should you be looking out for, what have been their experiences, what scares/upsets them, settles them etc

 

I've had both excellent and incredibly poor relations with SS teams, different areas! assume nothing! Ask, ask and be a pain...you are that childs voice..good luck..lots of great sources of advice on here

Edited by gingerbreadman
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