The Common Assessment Framework (CAF) is the process to identify children who have additional needs, assess needs and strengths and to provide them with a co-ordinated, multi agency support plan to meet those needs.

CAF is a key component of 'Every Child Matters: Change for Children' - the approach to working with children and young people aged 0 - 19 years.

It also has a major role to play in Nottingham's focus on early intervention and prevention for children, young people and families.

The aims of Every Child Matters and The Children Act 2004 are for every child, whatever their background or circumstances, to have the support they need to:

  • be healthy
  • stay safe
  • enjoy and achieve
  • make a positive contribution, and
  • achieve economic well-being

This means that staff working in all agencies that provide support to children, young people and families - from health settings to schools, from police to children's services and Connexions to voluntary sector groups - should use the CAF approach to work together, share information and provide integrated support.

The CAF has been adopted by the Nottingham Childrens Partnership and as such all agencies in the city should be using the CAF as their main assessment tool.

The CAF is the key tool to the delivery of the Nottingham Family Support Strategy and Pathway.

Please see below for a letter sent  to all board members of the Nottingham Children's Partnership regarding early assessment and effective support:

CAF letter from Cllr Mellen

Circumstances when CAF is required