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Core Assessment

What is a Core Assessment?

A Core Assessment is an in-depth assessment carried out by a Local Authority.  Its purpose is to clarify and identify the needs of the child by gathering information to gain a greater understanding of a child’s circumstances.   A Core Assessment usually starts at the point at which the Initial Assessment ends.

One of the main principles of a Core Assessment is that it is a multi-agency assessment, incorporating the specialist knowledge of all the professionals working with a child and their family.

When is a Core Assessment necessary?

Core Assessments are undertaken by a Social Worker if a Local Authority makes the decision to initiate child protection enquiries.  This is in accordance with The Children Act 1989 section 47; in addition a Core Assessment may be carried out in relation to a case already open to the Local Authority when there is a significant change in the family circumstances or new information becomes available.

What is the process?

Avocet’s Independent Social Worker will initially gather information already known to the Local Authority by reading case files.

An introductory meeting will be held with the parents and a schedule of work agreed, including individual meetings with the parents and seeing the child on their own.

All of the professionals involved with the child and their family will also be contacted and asked to provide information for the assessment.

Our Independent Social Worker will incorporate the Department of Health Family Assessment model in to the Core Assessment and utilise the Department of Health Family Pack of Questionnaires and Scales.

Avocet will write the Core Assessment on the form/system that each particular Local Authority uses and the assessment will contain well thought out and balanced analysis and clear, realistic recommendations.


Avocet will undertake a Core Assessment within the Department of Health’s required 35 working days.

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