The NSPCC Reunification Practice Framework: an evidence-informed framework to make safe permanence decisions for children in care

The session offers an overview of the Reunification Practice Framework, a comprehensive framework that brings together research insights, practical guidance and tools to support practitioners to gather robust evidence and make structured professional judgements around safe permanency decisions. 

The Framework represents an opportunity to address research findings, that many children who return home from care experience further abuse and neglect or placement breakdown (at times leading to a return to care) (DfE, 2013; Farmer, 2011; Wade, 2011).  The presentation highlights how strong assessment, planning and support for children and families can alter the probability of a child returning to care after a reunification decision has been made. 

The effectiveness of the Framework has been evaluated in 2016, with a study showing that almost all children who had been returned home under the programme remained at home six months later, and that child protection concerns about many of the children had declined (Gill, C.  2016 Taking Care evaluation: the return home and short-term outcomes for looked after children. London: NSPCC). The Framework has been recommended by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) as a resource to improve placement stability.

The session includes the opportunity for questions from the audience.

Presented by: Chiara Marin, Implementation Manager, NSPCC and Anna Holland, Consultant Social Worker, NSPCC