Serious case reviews have regularly raised concerns about planning issues e.g. lack of focus, plans not reflecting identified concerns, over optimism and disguised compliance. Case audits, feedback from frontline practitioners and the recent OFSTED inspections have focused on this and have identified similar issues and concerns.
SMART planning is a way of working to help families and professionals address any needs they may have and help families and professionals develop plans that are clear and address any identified risks and needs.
Using SMART planning can help practitioners to avoid drift and lack of progress of the child or young person. It allows for plans to be reviewed regularly ensuring the best outcomes for the child or young person.
The development of the plan is everyone’s responsibility including the professionals and the family. It should draw upon the resources available to both the family and the professionals including their skills, expertise and knowledge. It is particularly important to have the right professionals contributing with a specific understanding of their own services. Professionals should feel able, and committed, to challenging each other about aspects of plans that they feel are not SMART.
SMART planning does not replace any current policies or procedures and most of the work that we already do is SMART. It should not be a big change for most practitioners, but it may be necessary to review current plans to ensure that they are SMART.
What does SMART Stand For?
Examples of a SMART plan