Little background: In May this year my partners nieces (aged 5 & 7) were placed in our care. They were placed on a second child protection order under neglect (had been on one last year too) Both are challenging girls as before coming into our care they had not experienced consistency in boundaries, routine and discipline. (Eldest has also now been referred to SUSTAIN) Parents are now going through court process and we are awaiting foster panel decision ( pending my partners medical) as to us becoming permanent family & friends carers (already had temporary approval granted, eventually we will need to go down SGO process pending courts decision). We are currently receiving level 1 foster allowance and have been on one course - foundation level child development and managing behaviours (this was little help as it was an introductory course for pre-approved foster carers).
I have given up work to be able to fully commit to the girls needs and my partner is still working however he is having to take a lot of time off to attend meetings etc. Although his employer has been quite supportive so far as in approving emergency annual leave and letting him work back some time off , this is getting harder to do. We have now been asked to attend varies training courses which fall within his working hours..our question is can the Local authority compensate him for time off that his employer wont pay him for?
We are also struggling with school runs..being epileptic I don't drive and their school is over 3 miles away, this isn't too bad when my partners shifts allow him to take them to school and occasionally their granddad will help out, up until now the social have reluctantly agreed to fill in the gaps (which isn't often) but now they are saying they cant do this on a long term basis as don't have the man power and they wont fund taxis. (we have explored the bus option but its just not realistic ) so we need to sort something out. We have said the long term plan would be to have them move closer to us but this cant be explored until court process is out of the way (even though the move would still benefit them if they were to return home as it would still be closer to them) as it is felt the girls need stability from going to the same school. They are saying I will have to make the bus run!! They even said 'other parents have to do it ' to which I wanted to reply 'well other parents chose for their child to go to a particular school knowing they will have to take them, this wasn't our choice!' but i held my tongue. Anyway....Do the social have an obligation to make sure they get to school by providing transport when needed?
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