Children in care

We always do our best to find placements for children and young people in Barnsley, but sometimes we have to place them outside the borough if their needs are so complex that they require very specialist support which isn’t available locally.

Types of placements

We use a wide range of placements depending on the individual needs of the children and young people we’re placing. These include independent fostering and residential agencies.

Both are governed by Ofsted’s inspection framework and national minimum standards in the same way that council services are.

These agencies offer placements across the region, but we try our best to find children and young people places within a 20 mile radius of Barnsley so that they can keep in touch with their family, if it’s safe for them to do so, and to avoid any disruption to their education.

Getting the right placements

Placements outside the borough are arranged by the child’s social worker and the placement manager.

Before we select a placement for a child or young person, we’ll make a full assessment of their needs in consultation with their parents or carers.

We also make checks on the placement providers before we place a child or young person. This involves looking at their statements of purpose, Ofsted inspection reports, and other information to make sure that they can meet the child or young person’s needs. If possible, the young person and their parents/carers will visit the placement in advance.

We only approve the placement when everyone is satisfied that it’s the right one for the child or young person.

To protect children and young people, providers do not publicise their addresses and phone numbers.

Out of area notifications

Where a child in care is in a placement outside of their home local authority area, there is statutory responsibility on the placing authority and the children's home to notify the host local authority.

The responsibility for notification also includes children who aren't looked after and placed in a health or education placement for three months or more, or placed with the intention of staying for longer than three months.

In line with the 2014 amendments to the Care Planning, Placement and Case Review (England) Regulations 2010, if you're planning on placing a child or young person in Barnsley you should consult with us.

This guidance provides contact details and information about the range of services available for looked after children and young people, including those placed in Barnsley by other local authorities.

Our pledge to children in care

  • We'll look after you in a safe and caring home

  • We'll promote, support and respect your identity

  • We'll ensure you receive a good education

  • We'll support you to be healthy

  • We'll prepare you for the future

  • We'll involve you in making it happen