(Queen's Bench Division, Administrative Court; Cranston J; 11 March 2010)
A looked after child was placed by the Local Authority at a special residential school. Whether the residential placement meant that the child was no longer 'looked after' within Children Act 1989, s 20. The child had special educational needs, including severe autism and ADHD. The parents were unable to cope once child became older, complaining of his violence and obsession with fire. The child then became 'looked after child' because of respite care provided by the Authority.
The residential school was available up to 52 weeks of year, but the family only used it during term weeks with the child returning for weekends and holidays. The child was no longer a looked after child, as no longer provided with respite care. Issue as to the definition of looked after child in the Children Act, which was provision of accommodation pursuant to social services functions. The social services functions were not covered by the provision of accommodation as result of the statement of Special Educational Needs.