Early Help - Step up to children's social care / step down to early help
The interface between Early Help Services and Children's Social Care (CSC) is an essential component of a robust service for children and families ensuring they receive the right help at the right time, see the Early Help Strategy (PDF, 2.54MB).
The pathways between these two approaches are key to ensuring all children are safe, wherever they are within Cheshire East's levels of need.
The Step Up/Step Down policy (PDF, 951KB) details what is required of staff within Children's Social Care and the Early Help multi-agency workforce. It includes the whole of the Children Services and all partners who may be involved in Early Help at the Targeted/Complex Level of Need (ie Early Help Assessments or Children and Family Combined Assessments). It covers the continuum of need from Early Help to Children in Need/Child Protection.
Multi-agency meetings will be held and chaired by a Service Manager from Children’s Social Care on Wednesdays fortnightly in the north and south of Cheshire East. Practitioners wishing to discuss cases will be required to complete a referral form (PDF, 96KB) (referral form MS Word, 19KB) and submit by 4pm on the Wednesday beforehand. If you have immediate safeguarding concerns then you would follow your own safeguarding procedures and speak directly to Checs.
Step Up Step Down flow chart (MS Powerpoint, 342KB)