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In Loco Parentis - A Demos report commissioned by Barnardo's

Author : Celia Hannon, Claudia Wood and Louise Bazalgette (2010)

Price : Free

The report examines what the care system would look like if it were reconfigured to avoid the delay, instability and abrupt transitions that many young people still experience and demonstrates that a smoother, more proactive care system could also be less costly to the state.

It shows that looked after children who have a poor quality of care - characterised by delay and instability - can cost children's services up to £32,755 per child each year more than a positive care experience. Overall the potential emotional and financial savings that could be made if the care system was more proactive are considerable. The report makes a range of targeted recommendations including: - the care system must be de-stigmatised and viewed as a positive form of family support - the Department for Education needs to strengthen care planning guidance to ensure there are fewer failed family reunifications - foster carers should receive mental health training - local authorities need to make respite support and placement support workers to fosters carers on request - the Department for Education should make mental health assessments of children entering care mandatory, using a standardised multi-disciplinary measure.

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Associated subjects and types

Policy and research documents, Fostering, adoption and short break care, Residential care, Social care support, Youth justice


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