The Role of the Lead Worker

Working Together to Safeguard Children, 2018

‘A lead practitioner should undertake the assessment, provide help to the child and family, act as an advocate on their behalf and co-ordinate the delivery of support services. A GP, family support worker, school nurse, teacher, health visitor and/or special educational needs co-ordinator could undertake the lead practitioner role.’

All children, young people and families who require coordinated support from more than one practitioner should experience a seamless and effective service. This is delivered most effectively when one practitioner – a Lead Worker – takes a primary role to ensure frontline services are coordinated, coherent and achieving intended outcomes.

Who is the Lead Worker?

The practitioner initiating the Early Help assessment will act as the Lead Worker until the first review where, along with the plan, the Lead Worker role can be reviewed and, if necessary, a new Lead Worker can be appointed. 

Core functions of a Lead Worker

The role includes three core functions which can be carried out by a range of practitioners across the children and young people's workforce:

  • act as a single point of contact for the child, young person, or family, who they can trust and who can engage them in making choices, navigating their way through services and effecting change;
  • coordinate the delivery of agreed actions in the Team Around the Family (TAF) meetings to ensure that children, young people and families receive an effective service that is regularly reviewed. These actions will be based on the outcome of the common assessment and recorded in the Early Help delivery plan;
  • reduce overlap and inconsistency in the services received by children, young people and families.

Last Updated on Tuesday, August 31, 2021

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