Looked After Child reviews

We draw up a care plan for every child we look after. As things change over time, the care plan needs to be looked at regularly to make sure that it is still working. We do this with the child by having a Looked After Child (LAC) review.

The review process

We have the first review within 28 days of a child or young person becoming looked after.

We have the next review within 3 months of the first. After that we have a review at least every 6 months.

If a child is having short breaks with a foster carer or in a children's home, we have the first review within 3 months rather than 28 days. This is because the child might not have been in their placement many days by then.

We might want to have a review more often if a lot is happening in the young person's life. Or this might happen if there are changes in the overall plan.

The reason for LAC reviews

We do LAC reviews to make sure that the child is getting the care they need and that they have plans in place they can achieve. We might talk about -

  • seeing their family and friends
  • education
  • health
  • how they spend time doing things they enjoy
  • their emotions and behaviour
  • their identity
  • with teenagers, we talk about how they can become more independent. We talk about what career, education or training plans they might consider

In the review meetings we talk about what everyone can do to make sure the child is safe, well and happy. We want to make sure that we are all working towards them having a long term, stable place to live. We see if anything was suggested for the child in an earlier review. We see if the suggestion was carried out and if there is anything more that needs to be done. We agree who needs to take action and by when.


Normally, people who know the child or young person and work closely with them attend. Such as -

  • the child or young person - if they are old enough
  • their parents and anyone else who has responsibility as if they were the parent
  • their social worker or personal advisor
  • anyone who is caring for them at the time
  • a person to chair the meeting

Sometimes we might invite these people, depending on the situation -

  • health staff, such as their health visitor or school nurse
  • their teacher or nursery nurse
  • the child's guardian, if there are any ongoing legal proceedings
  • an advocate for the child who might be from RAPP or an independent visitor
  • relatives
  • the fostering social worker who works with the foster carers
  • anyone else who the child or young person wants there if the chairperson agrees

We think of the review as the child's meeting. Their social worker should find out who they want to be there if they are old enough. We can have different meetings so that we get the views of the other people or agencies. Or they can send us their opinions in other ways if the child does not want them to be invited.


The meetings will take place in the best place for the child. We often have reviews where the child or young person lives, like their foster home or children's home. We can also have the review at your locality, at school, or somewhere else where the child feels comfortable.

Parents and LAC reviews

Parents are normally invited to the review. When it is possible and appropriate, it is important for parents to come to the review. This is so they can give information and help update the plans for their child.

Sometimes parents do not have contact with their child because a court has restricted this or because parents are separated. Sometimes the child might not want them to come. If the parent cannot come, we send them a consultation form. It asks them to put down their views so they can be talked about in the meeting.

Your views as a parent or carer are very important to the review. If you feel you cannot express what you think you can bring along someone to help you or speak for you. This should be someone you trust. You should let the chairperson know before the meeting if someone is coming to help you. If the child or young person feels uncomfortable with the arrangements, this may affect who can go.

Very rarely parents and their supporters can be kept out of the child's review. If this happens, we explain the reasons why and send feedback from the review in writing afterwards.

Independent Conference Reviewing Officer (ICRO)

LAC reviews are the child's meeting. We do have someone who acts as chairperson to make sure the meeting stays on track. This person is called an Independent Conference Reviewing Officer (ICRO).

Young people have told us they want the same person to chair all their reviews. Each looked after child has one ICRO who chairs their reviews every time when possible.

If you are unsure of who your or your child's ICRO is, you can contact the ICRO team -

Email - icro.admin@hullcc.gov.uk

Telephone - 01482 300 300

ICRO team
Midmere Centre
Dorchester Road


All the people who came to the review or were invited will receive a copy of the report. The ICRO writes up notes from the meeting and sends the report usually within 2 weeks.

The report includes an overview of what was said and action points of the things to do before the next review. The ICRO write a letter to the child or young person. This is if it is appropriate and depends on their age and understanding.

Children in short break care

The first review would be held within 3 months of the short breaks starting rather than 28 days. The meeting is normally very similar to other LAC reviews. It looks at whether the short breaks are still helping the child and their family with the other support they get. This applies to disabled children who are having short breaks and other children whose families need support.


While the child is still with their foster carers, birth parents are still invited to the reviews. This is unless there are other reasons for not inviting them. If a court has ordered that the child is adopted, we hold a review within 3 months of the order. This is if the child has not already been placed with their adoptive family before then.

When the child is in their adoptive placement, we have adoption reviews instead of LAC reviews. These start within 28 days from when they were adopted. Then within the next 3 months and then every 6 months until they are legally adopted.

Birth parents still have parental responsibility until the child is legally adopted. We still ask them for their views at the adoption reviews. The ICRO send some information to birth parents after the adoption review. Birth parents can sign a form to say they do not want to get any feedback or be asked about their wishes at adoption reviews anymore if that is what they want.

The law on adoption is quite complicated. If you have any questions about this, contact the ICRO team or the adoption team.

Help to communicate

If the child or any adult needs help to communicate, we can help them. For instance, if they have a hearing impairment. We can arrange for interpreters to be there if someone does not speak English. Documents can be translated for them.


The ICRO try to ensure that all views are heard and that any plan has full support. If anyone disagrees with the plan, this is recorded on the review report. The ICRO recommends what can be done to resolve disagreements. They might speak with other people after the review meeting to deal with this.

If these things cannot be resolved, the ICRO tell -

  • the child or young person
  • parent or carer

about their right to complain.