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Integrating concurrent planning into the case planning process

A case plan is an opportunity to create change for a child. It is important to remember that concurrent planning is a fundamental part of integrating a permanency focus into a case plan – it is not a separate, additional process. Developing a concurrent plan with clear alternative permanency goals occurs across the cycle of case planning and is essential in each of the four stages; assess, plan, implement and review. 

Permanency planning during short-term care

Short-term child protection orders with custody or guardianship are a critical part of intervention for children who are involved in the child protection system. They provide Child Safety with the authority to work with a family to reduce the risk of future harm, with the aim of safely returning the child home. All case plans developed when a child is in care under short-term arrangements are required to include goals and actions for achieving permanency, with the primary goal usually reunification.

The provision within the Child Protection Act 1999 for time-limited short-term orders sets the tone for purposeful case planning to ensure timely decisions are made for the child. Concurrent planning is an essential part of this process and ensures that if reunification is not possible, a planned alternative permanency goal can be enacted without delay, in a considered way.

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