Getting it right for every child (GIRFEC) Practice Guidance 3 – The role of the lead professional

This guidance on the role of the lead professional aims to clarify who would be the appropriate practitioner to fulfil this role and the responsibilities in the management of a child’s plan.

3. Introduction

With the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) (see glossary) as its foundation, GIRFEC provides Scotland with a consistent framework and shared language for promoting, supporting, and safeguarding the wellbeing of all children and young people. GIRFEC is based on evidence, is internationally recognised and is an example of a child rights-based approach. It is locally embedded and positively embraced by practitioners across children’s services, changing cultures, systems and practice for the benefit of children, young people and their families. However, more needs to be achieved as we work towards Keeping The Promise to respect, protect and fulfil the rights of all children in Scotland.

The refreshed values and principles of GIRFEC we want to fully embed and implement are:

  • Placing the child or young person and their family at the heart, and promoting choice, with full participation in decisions that affect them;
  • Working together with families to enable a rights-respecting, strengths-based, inclusive approach;
  • Understanding wellbeing as being about all areas of life including family, community and society;
  • Valuing difference and ensuring everyone is treated fairly;
  • Considering and addressing inequalities;
  • Providing support for children, young people and families when they need it, until things get better, to help them to reach their full potential; and
  • Everyone working together in local areas and across Scotland to improve outcomes for children, young people and their families.



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