When your child needs extra support, we want to find the best way forward as soon as possible. The Common Assessment Framework (CAF) is a way of working together, putting your family at the centre of decisions made about your child.
The CAF exists to help you support your family. CAF helps your family receive the right support at an early stage, before needs get bigger. A Professional, who already works with your family (e.g. your child's teacher), will use the CAF assessment to gather as much information as possible about your lives: What's going well and what you are finding challenging, in order to put the right services in place for your family.
For more information please see the following links:
What is the CAF?
The Common Assessment Framework (CAF) is a shared assessment and planning process for use across all children’s services. It aims to help the early identification of children and young people’s additional needs and provide a co-ordinated service through a Team Around the Family (TAF).
The CAF process consists of:
- A standard form that allows practitioners to record and share information
- An assessment that is done in partnership with the family
- A TAF delivery plan and subsequent reviews to assess progress
Who is the CAF for?
The CAF is aimed at children and young people from 0-19 years (up to 24 years for young adults with additional learning disabilities) whose range of needs are unclear or are not being met by their current service provision.
What are the benefits of using the CAF?
- Identifies needs at the earliest possible opportunity
- Identifies a single Lead Professional to link the family with relevant agencies, reducing the need for children and families to have to keep repeating their story
- Allows the child/young person and their family to take part in their assessment and feel they are in control and have a voice
- Focuses on strengths as well as needs
- Offers a common structure to record information in order to facilitate information sharing between practitioners and agencies.
- Provides a holistic approach to meeting the needs of the child/young person
Who will use the CAF?
Every practitioner working with families in the children and young people’s workforce can take responsibility for starting the CAF. Once completed, the TAF meeting will decide who will take the role as Lead Professional to co-ordinate agreed actions with the family.