1. This statutory guidance is issued by the Scottish Ministers under section 63 of the Children and Young People (Scotland) Act 2014 (the Act). It provides corporate parents with information and advice about how they should fulfil the duties set out in Part 9 (Corporate Parenting) of the Act. These duties come into force on 1 April 2015.
2. Subject to specific exemptions, all corporate parents must have regard to this guidance. Compliance will be monitored through reviews of corporate parenting reports (carried out by Scottish Ministers) and independent inspection.
3. Due to the variety of organisations included as corporate parents, this guidance does not prescribe specific processes and planning / reporting formats. Instead it sets out the parameters within which corporate parents should develop their own approaches, either individually or in partnership. Those approaches should also be shaped by the corporate parent's primary functions, and informed by the needs, views and experiences of looked after children and care leavers.
4. This guidance should be read alongside the guidance for Part 1 (Rights of Children), Part 3 (Children's Services Planning), Part 4 (Provision of Named Persons), Part 5 (Child's Plan), Part 10 (Aftercare) and section 96 (Assessment of wellbeing) of the Act. Other relevant legislative and policy guidance is listed at Appendix A.
5. This guidance will be accompanied by a series of Corporate Parenting Practice Notes, designed to support individual or groups of corporate parents to understand their legal responsibilities (within the scope of their other functions) and to learn from existing good practice. The guidance and Practice Notes should enable corporate parents to implement comprehensive and child/young person centred corporate parenting strategies, which improve the care experiences and outcomes of looked after children and care leavers across Scotland.
6. This guidance has been developed to assist corporate parents, but it will also be of interest to other individuals and organisations involved in supporting looked after children and care leavers.
7. Please note that this guidance (and relevant Practice Notes) will be reviewed in 2018.