The Department for Education (DfE) is seeking views about the use of special guardianship orders (SGOs).
Special guardianship was introduced in 2005 as an alternative legal status providing permanence for children when they are unable to remain with their parents until they are 18 years old. These included mainly older children who had become separated from their birth family; children already settled with a relative or foster carer; and groups such as unaccompanied asylum-seeking children, minority ethnic groups who have cultural difficulties with adoption and unaccompanied asylum-seeking children who may need a secure legal basis without breaking the strong attachment they may have with their family abroad.
The DfE is inviting local authorities, children and young people, special guardians, social workers, birth families, the judiciary, lawyers and special interest groups to submit their views on:
how the use of special guardianship has changed since its introduction in 2005;