The Children and Young People (Scotland) Act 2014, legislating for the Getting It Right For Every Child (GIRFEC) approach means that young carers, along with any other child with additional needs, should have any needs concerning their well-being assessed through the process of the child’s plan. This will ensure there is a single planning approach for children who need additional support from services, providing a single point of contact for every child and providing a holistic understanding of wellbeing.
Young carer services in Scotland work with partner agencies to meet the needs of the child. Training for practitioners is usually available locally from GIRFEC teams. Guidance around implementation of the Act is currently being developed for practitioners and is expected to be published in the summer of 2014.
Additional support needs
In addition, the Education (Additional Support for Learning) (Scotland) Act 2004 (as amended in 2009) places a duty on local authorities to make arrangements to identify children and young people’s additional support needs.
Any parent or young person is entitled to ask a local authority to assess if a child or young person has additional support needs, and if they need a Co-ordinated Support Plan (CSP). Not all young people with additional support needs will require a CSP, some may require more of a ’light touch’ intervention.
Many young carers’ services have developed their own assessment process to inform their work with individual young carers.