facilities are provided for children from three to 18 years old and, in
exceptional cases, to 21 years. Children
are not admitted unless alternative facilities are not available or are not
adequate to the needs of the child at that time. Discharges are made as soon as
the needs requiring admission have been met and a suitable placement can be
found.” At this time, assessment was
described as “the total appraisal of the child’s functioning as an individual
and in the contexts that are relevant to him/her, i.e. the family, the school,
the employment situation, the community. Children are assessed medically,
psychologically, educationally and behaviourally, and these assessments are
studied in the light of the family and social context in which he or she lives.
From this appraisal, plans are made to assist the child develop to an optimal
level. The family’s and the community’s likely interaction with the child help
shape the plans made.” “Plans are
implemented, for the most part, after the child is discharged from the
assessment institution. This is done
under the supervision of social workers or welfare officers or as an initial
move from the assessment centre, in a treatment institution.” Annual Report of the Department for
Community Welfare, June 30th 1973.
assessment institutions were being phased out by 1983, with Crisis Care units
and emergency foster care schemes destined to take their place, as it was
believed that “the needs of dependent children are best provided for in
normalised community settings with least disruption to community ties.” Annual Report of the Department for
Community Welfare, June 30th 1983.