Getting Started with this Handbook


Contents

  1. Welcome
  2. About this Handbook
  3. Terminology
  4. Glossary and National Contacts
  5. Display and Browser Options
  6. Compliance
  7. Comments and Suggestions
  8. Copyright
  9. Printing and Retaining Copies


1. Welcome

Foster carers play a very important role in the lives of Children in Care and their families so it is important that you have the necessary tools to support you with this task. The handbook is one of these tools alongside the many professionals you will work with including your Supervising Social Worker and other foster carers. We will continue to develop this handbook with you and keep it updated.

This is the start of a great journey for you and the children and young people you may work with.


2. About this Handbook

The handbook reflects policies, procedure and guidance for the fostering service which cover many common situations faced by foster carers on a day to day basis. It has been written in an accessible way to help you understand the sort of things that your fostering service requires of you. It has been designed for new and existing foster carers and deals with the day to day practicalities you may face.

The content is Handbook sections are accessible via the links on the right-hand side of the page or to view the full contents list for the handbook, please click here.

There is a Resources area which contains additional guidance from Achieving for Children which will be relevant to your role. It is important that you also use the Resources section.

Safeguarding guidance for your area can be found in:

You can also find safeguarding guidance on the Kingston and Richmond SCB website and the Windsor and Maidenhead SCB Website.

The Handbook has links to the Minimum Standards for Fostering Services and references to the relevant Training, Support and Development Standards. You can also use the handbook to support your learning and development, particularly in relation to meeting the induction standards.

If you are unable to find the information you require, please contact your Supervising Social Worker.


3. Terminology

We have used the following terms and post titles:

Children in Care The children and young people we care for are known as Children in Care. However, you will find that the term Looked After Children is used in the legislation and statutory guidance so may appear on occasions within the manual.

Supervising Social Worker

This means the allocated, suitably qualified social worker who is responsible for supervising and supporting you.

Child's Social Worker

This means the allocated social worker from the Placing Authority who is responsible for managing the child's case.

Placing Authority

This means the local authority, children’s trust or community interest company with overall responsibility for the child's care.

Fostering Service

This means the service provided by the Independent Fostering Agency.

Fostering Service Manager

This means the registered manager of the service provided by the fostering service.

Placement Plan

This is the documentation drawn up by the child's social worker before the placement wherever possible (or where this is not possible, within 5 working days of the placement) which sets out in detail the arrangements for the child's care in the foster placement.


4. Glossary and National Contacts

There a large glossary of terms used throughout out the manual Many of these are highlighted in the text. Once clicked, the glossary will appear in a new window or tab, depending on your browser. There is also a link on the right hand side of the manual that takes you to the Glossary and National Contacts Section so that you can search for terms that you are unfamiliar with or look for national organisations that may be helpful in your role.


5. Display and Browser Options

People with a visual impairment may have difficulty accessing this Handbook.
To change the size of the text/layout - please use the accessibility buttons on the right-hand panel of each page, they look like this:

View this website with small text View this website with medium text View this website with large text View this website with high visibility

Click a larger button to increase your text size, the very largest being high visibility mode.


6. Compliance

Regulatory Compliance

Every effort has been taken to ensure regulatory compliance. If you discover any errors or mistakes, please alert your Supervising Social Worker.


7. Comments and Suggestions

If you have any comments or suggestions to make about this Handbook please consult your Supervising Social Worker


8. Copyright

The content of this website can be accessed, printed and downloaded in an unaltered form, on a temporary basis, for personal study or reference purposes. However any content printed or downloaded may not be sold, licensed, transferred, copied or reproduced in whole or in part in any manner or in or on any media to any person without the prior written consent of tri.x.


9. Printing and Retaining Copies

The Handbook should normally be viewed on line but can be printed, for reference only, via the printing options of your internet browser (usually by clicking File from the top menu, and then selecting Print, or using the keyboard shortcut 'ctrl + p').

Please note, the Handbook will be updated from time to time, so you should avoid retaining printed versions - hard copies are only valid for 72 hours.