Ending a Placement

Standards and Regulations

Fostering Services National Minimum Standards (England) 2011:

Training, Support and Development Standards for Foster Care:

See also: My Placement may be Breaking Down.

Usually when you have a child/young person placed with you it may end when:-

  • The child returns to their family;
  • The placement breaks down;
  • The child is moved to another placement;
  • The young person is old enough to live independently;
  • The child/young person is adopted - either by another family, family member or possibly you.

Wherever possible when a placement is coming to an end, a plan should be developed to move the child/young people. The child/young person might be feeling worried about what is going to happen to them even if the move is one that they feel positive about.

You may feel anxious about the child/young person's move too, this is natural, that's why it is important for everyone that there is a clear plan about what will happen and who will do what. It is really important that you talk to your Supervising Social Worker, especially if you think that the move is not in the child's best interests.


Useful Tips

You have an important part to play in helping the child to move and should be positive about it even if it is in difficult circumstances. When you are talking to the child about the move be positive about why they are moving and what will happen.

Plan "goodbyes" for friends and family members that the child is close to.

You should put together information about the child/young person's daily routine, likes/dislikes and any other important information that will help the new carer and let the child's social worker know if you are happy to talk to the new carer.

If the child/young person has photographs, life story book and other information about the time that they have spent with you, you should make sure that they go with them.

Make sure you pack all important documents such as their passport.

You should provide clear instructions about any medication or appointments the child may have.

The child's belongings should be moved in a suitcase or holdall and never be transported in bin-bags or other inappropriate containers (see NYAS, My Things Matter Report).

Let the child know what contact they may have with you in the future and provide them with photographs and mementoes of their time with you.

If a placement ends without this being planned, a disruption meeting may be held. A disruption meeting is an opportunity for everyone who has been involved in the child/young person's care to look at what has happened, what went well and what could have gone better. This helps not only you as a carer but may help the child in future placements.