Children’s trusts to face duty to intervene early with vulnerable

New legislation requiring children’s trusts to intervene early when children have health, social or education issues has been pledged by the government.

The schools white paper, published yesterday, said children experiencing difficult personal circumstances needed “rapid” response from professionals in multi-agency teams based in or associated with schools.

The white paper cited a successful scheme run by Shropshire children’s trusts, where teams including senior mental health workers, social workers and education welfare officers offered support to all the schools in their area.

A consultation will be published in the autumn setting out proposals for “bringing greater consistency, rigour and impact” to the way children’s trust boards organise and deliver local early intervention.

The white paper said this would aim to develop a national framework for early intervention with “clear systems, roles and responsibilities” along with evidence-based approaches for supporting children and families.

The Apprenticeships, Skills, Children and Learning Bill currently before the House of Commons includes legislation to strengthen children’s trusts, by putting children’s trust boards on a statutory footing and placing a duty on schools to co-operate in arrangements.

More information

Full text of Ed Balls’ statement on the Schools white paper

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