Birmingham City Council

Early Support

What is Early Support?

Early Support is a way of working, underpinned by 10 principles that aim to improve the delivery of services for disabled children, young people and their families. It enables services to coordinate their activity better and provide families with a single point of contact and continuity through key working.

Early Support ensures that service delivery is child, young person and family centered. It focuses on enabling services and practitioners to work in partnership with children, young people and their families.

Early Support approach is fundamental to the implementation of the strategy detailed in Support and Aspiration: A new approach to Special Educational Needs and Disability, the Government's 2011 Green Paper. This identified Early Support as a key approach to meeting the needs of disabled children, young people and their families.

Early Support helps Birmingham to implement the Government's strategy to bring together the services families need into a single assessment and planning process covering education, health and care.

The National Early Support Consortium provides training and resources for families & practitioners - for additional information please go to www.ncb.org.uk/earlysupport

For local information contact the Early Support Coordinator on 0121 303 0100.

Early Support is relevant to all agencies that provide services for children 0-4 yrs old in:

  • Hospital and clinical settings
  • Child Development Centres
  • Early Years settings and Schools
  • Children’s Centres
  • Child Minders
  • A range of specialist support agencies, including portage services and voluntary organisations.

In order to comply with current data protection legislation all completed Early Support documents need to have an appropriate level of security classification assigned. Because the completed fCAF forms hold information that would cause 'distress to an individual' if revealed without consent, they fall into the classification of 'PROTECTED'.

It is important that practitioners follow their organisational policies in order to comply with legislation. Information collected is compliant with the Data Protection Act 1998 and is used to support the wider fCAF process within Birmingham. Only anonymised data will be shared with partner organisations including health and welfare practitioners and other local authorities.

For further information on security labelling and handling information please refer to your own agency guidance and protocol.