Jargon Buster

  • FosterWiki
  • Author:FosterWiki
  • Published:November 2022
  • Country: United Kingdom

Jargon Buster – A guide to acronyms and abbreviations in foster care

Jargon Buster - A guide to acronyms and abbreviations in foster care

Introductions to the Jargon Buster

Understanding the industry jargon and acronyms in foster care is essential, you will hear so many different abbreviations and acronyms, and having an understanding of these is crucial to your role.

Below are over 60 acronyms and abbreviations, if we have left any out please let us know, FosterWiki is a community page for all to contribute to.

Acronyms, abbreviations, and jargon


Jargon busted!

ADHD Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder.
ADM Agency Decision Maker. This is the person who makes all the final decisions. When the panel makes its recommendation, this goes to the ADM which has the final say. They are by fostering services that it does not consider someone suitable to foster. usually, also a manager in your organisation but should be independent of the allegation to have no conflict of interest in their decision. The ADM can make a QD; this is the decision made.
AO Adoption Order.
ASC Autistic Spectrum Condition.
ASD Autistic Spectrum Disorder.
BSL British Sign Language.
CAFCASS Child and Family Court Advisory and Support Services.
CAMHS Child and Adolescent Mental Health.
CIC Child In Care team.
CIN Children In Need.
CME Children missing from education.
CO Care Order.
CoramBAAF An independent membership organisation for professionals, foster carers and adopters, and anyone else working with or looking after children in or from care, or adults who have been affected by adoption. It is a successor organisation to the British Association for Adoption and Fostering (BAAF).
CP Care plan.
CP/Care Proceedings The name of the legal proceedings which determine the future care arrangements.
CPCC Child Protection Case Conference.
CPD Continuing Professional Development.
CPS Child Protective Services.
CSA Childs Sexual Abuse.
CSE Child Sexual Exploitation.
CSW Child’s Social Worker CIC.
CYP Children and young people.
DBS Disclosure and barring Service.
DC Disabled child.
DCS Director of Children’s Services.
DLA Disability Living Allowance.
DUST Drug Use Screening tool.
ECO Emergency Care Order.
EDT Emergency Duty Team.
EHCP Education health plan.
EWO Educational Welfare Officer.
FASD Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder.
FGC Family Group Conferencing.
FGM Female Genital Mutilation.
FOI Freedom of information (FOI) gives you the right to ask any public sector organisation for information they hold. Anyone can ask for information. You can also ask for information about yourself under data protection legislation.
FSW A term used by KCC refers to a Fostering social worker.
HSB Harmful Sexual Behaviour.
ICO Interim Care Order. This is made under the Children Act 1989.
ICO The Information Commissioners Office, The Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) upholds information rights in the public interest, promoting openness by public bodies and data privacy for individuals.
ICPC Initial Child Protection Conference.
IFA Independent Fostering Agency, sometimes referred to as an ‘agency’ or IFP (Independent Fostering Provider).
IRM Independent Reviewing Mechanism. This is the foster carer’s appeal process. If you don’t agree with the panel or ADM decision (this can be about de-registration or change in approval), you can take it to the IRM which is an independent government panel. The IRM looks objectively at your case and makes its determination. The recommendation of the IRM is then sent back to the Agency Decision Maker (ADM) for the final decision.
IRO Independent Reviewing Officer, This is someone who is independent of the social workers and other professionals who will chair the child or young person’s reviews.
IUC Police Interview Under Caution.
LA Local Authority.
LAC Looked After Child sometimes referred to as CLA (Child Looked After).
LAC Review Meeting chaired by the IRO to consider the child’s care plan. The first one is within 28 days of placement, 2nd at 3 months then every 6 months.
LADO The LADO is involved from the initial phase of an allegation through to the conclusion of the case. The LADO provides advice and guidance to providers, liaises with the police and other agencies, and monitors the progress of cases to ensure that they are dealt with as quickly as possible, consistent with a thorough and fair process.
MISPER Short for Missing Person, a term used by the police and services when a child or young person is missing.
NEET Not in Education, Employment or Training.
NMS National Minimum Standards, standards set for all your fostering services as an absolute minimum (also in the Children’s Act).
NUPFC National Union of Professional Foster Carers (certified and approved union for foster carers).
OFSTED The government’s office of standards in education, children’s services, and skills. Inspectors of organisations that provide any of those services, including inspecting and regulating services that care for children and young people.
OOH’S Out of Hours.
P&C Parent and child placement.
PA Personal Advisor ( Assigned to each child usually at 16yrs to advise through the Pathway Plan).
PANEL Fostering panel is a group of people from various professions, social workers/ managers, an independent foster carer from a different LA or IFA and may include an adult who has been in care.
PAR Prospective adopter report report prepared by assessing SW
PEP Personal Educational Plan. Normally held at the child or young person’s school, attended by the child, CSW, SSW, foster carers, and school representative responsible for teaching and looking after the child.
PIP Personal independence payment.
Placement Plan All children in care are required to have a Placement Plan completed before their placement begins or within five working days.
PP Pupil Premium.
PPN Public Protection Notice.
PR Parental Responsibility. Shared between LA and birth parents in different degrees according to the regulations they are placed under.
PRU Pupil Referral Unit.
QD Qualifying determination. This is the final decision made by your organisation, the panel will send a recommendation to your organisation’s decision-maker, and they will send the Qualifying determination to you.
RCPC Review Child Protection Conference.
REGS Fostering Services regulations (2011) England. The NMS and REGS combine to provide a clear framework for fostering services.
SALT Speech and Language Therapy
SAR Subject Access Request. Is a written request you make to your fostering services for all the information and data they hold on you.
SCR Serious Case Review.
SDQ Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire.
SEC 46 Enquiry If professionals think there are reasonable grounds to suspect that a child is likely to have suffered significant harm, Sec 46 inquiry.
SEC 47 or S47 Child protection investigation carried out under Section 47 of the Children Act 1989. You will generally hear the term ‘Section 47’ if the children in your care are removed. Section 47 gives the fostering service the power to remove the children with no explanation, as quickly and from where they chose.
SEN Special education needs.
SENCO Special Educational Needs Co-ordinator.
SEND Special Educational Needs Department.
SGO Special Guardianship Order.
Significant Harm If a child is exposed to suffer harm to their welfare, health, or development.
SLD Severe Learning Difficulty.
SOC Standard of care concerns are concerned ref the care of a child but do not involve harm to a child. SOCs are dealt with in supervision and meetings with fostering managers, separate from the allegations process. NMS’s state SOC should not be made into an allegation.
SSW Supervising Social Worker for the foster carer, sometimes referred to as the Fostering
Strategy Meeting A meeting held following an initial assessment which indicates that a child has suffered or is likely to suffer significant harm. The purpose of the meeting is to determine whether there are grounds for a Sec 46 enquiry.
SW Social Worker or Link Worker.
TAC Team Around the Child.
TSDS Training , Support and Development standards.
UASC Unaccompanied Asylum Seeking Child.
VS Virtual school.
Whistleblowing When a foster carer reports a concern, the concern could be something that falls below established standards of practice, amounts to improper conduct, endangers the health and safety of any person, is against the organisation’s policies or attempts to conceal any of the above.
YOI Young Offenders Institute.
YOT Youth Offending Team CSE.
YP Young people.

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