Principle 3.  Planning should start early and continue up to age 25

Summary of Principle 3

Planning must be available from age 14 and be proportionate to need

Care planning into adulthood should provide reassurance to children and young people that plans and systems are in place to avoid rushed or abrupt transitions. Evidence suggests that transitions planning in some local authority areas starts too late. Many carers and professionals report this as being a significant contributing factor to unsatisfactory and ineffective transitions. Young people, parents, carers, and professionals need to be made aware at an early stage of what supports are available.

Children’s plans and assessments should be adopted by adult services

The Getting it Right for Every Child (GIRFEC) framework, which forms the basis of the Child’s Plan, currently has no equivalent in adult services. Outcome-based assessment tools used by adult health and social care partnerships may be different from those used in children’s services, especially when moving from a family-based assessment in children’s services to a focus on the individual adult. If GIRFEC principles were applied to adult services it would help to provide a basis for early indicative budget and prevent duplication of assessments.  Work is underway to examine to what extent the adoption of the GIRFEC principles in adult services would help create a smoother transitions pathway.

Transition planning and support should continue to age 25

Post-16 transitions are often treated as a leaving-school event rather than an on-going process lasting several years. This means that subsequent transitions, for example, leaving further education are often unsupported. Many young people and their parents and carers tell us they find these later transitions particularly challenging and are often unsure where to turn to for support. All the Principles of Good Transitions should continue to apply and transitions pathways should include support for post-further education transitions, even though the underpinning legislation may be different.

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