Parent Partnership Service

Person Centred Practice and Participation

Person Centred Practice (PCP) is a way of working together and communicating positively with each other, always with the child or young person at the centre of the process. The views, wishes and feelings of the child young person will be at the heart of decision making.

PCP involves using a variety of different ‘tools’ or methods to develop the child or young person’s ID(E)P. There are many different approaches to PCP but they all centre on the child or young person’s views, wishes and feelings, their aspirations and hopes for the future 

A guide for parents and carers

  • PCP is a way of working together and communicating positively with each other.
  • The child/young person is at the centre.
  • The voice of the child is key, as is the voice of the family.
  • The views, wishes and feelings of those involved are at the heart of decision making.

What to think about

  • Think positive – what strengths does your child have?
  • Think about your child in and out of school.
  • What are your dreams for your child and what is important to them? 

What to expect

  • Every voice is valued, as we all have the opportunity to share our thoughts and feelings.
  • A relaxed and more informal approach.
  • We hope to learn new things about what your child thinks and feels.

What happens next?

  • The information we gather together helps to plan our next steps
  • Our discussions are recorded in a visual way and we all understand how we will be helping to move things forward
  • Later on, we will talk together about how the plan is working.

Here are some of the ways we are being Person Centred in Pembrokeshire

PCP language

‘What we like and admire about the child’, ‘what makes me happy?’, ‘How best to support me...’, ‘What is possible and positive?’, ‘The Dream’.

One Page Profile

A positive ‘snapshot’ of the child and how best to support.

Person Centred planning/review meetings

This may include a PATH (Planning Alternative Tomorrows with Hope).

Equal Contribution

A child can invite anyone important to them to a meeting and everyone’s voice is valued.

Person-centred reviews: Publication from Welsh Government - A booklet to help you think about your meeting

Participation of children, their parents and young people

Local Authorities, local health boards, schools, and further education institutions (FEI) who support children or young people with Additional Learning Needs (ALN) have new duties in the legislation to:

  • Listen to the views, wishes and feelings of the child and the child’s parent or the young person
  • Understand the importance of the child and the child’s parent or the young person participating as fully as possible in decisions
  • provide information and support to the child and the child’s parent, or young person, to so they can participate in those decisions

A Person Centred Planning (PCP) Approach

To help support this participation from children, young people and their families, all schools and settings in Pembrokeshire use person-centred practice (PCP)

hy the participation of children, their parents and young people is important

Supporting children, their parents and young people to participate meaningfully will help them to:

  • feel confident that their views, wishes and feelings are listened to and valued, even if they find it difficult to get these across
  • have an awareness of their rights and the support and services available to them
  • Develop a sense of responsibility for their learning
  • Develop a sense of control over their learning  

As a result of this, a child or young person’s needs are more likely to be understood and the support they need is more likely to be effective, this should lead to better outcomes for the child or young person.

If a child lacks capacity to understand what it means to exercise their rights, their contribution to the process is still important.

‘Parents have a fundamental role in helping their child to achieve their potential. The child is far more likely to achieve their outcomes and potential when parents are actively involved and their views, wishes and feelings are taken into account’ ALN Code WALES 2021

Some children and young people may become anxious in new situations, or feel overwhelmed or uncomfortable, and find it difficult to participate fully or express their views in meetings, or with large numbers of adults. Consideration must be given to how to support an individual child or young person to participate

  • The duty on schools, local authorities and FEI’s to involve and support children and young people, applies in the same way to involve and support the parents of children.
  • Parents hold key information and play a critical role in their child’s development and education. They have unique knowledge about their child which will contribute to the shared view of the child’s needs and the best way of supporting them.
  • Parents have a right to participate in decisions about their child’s education and a positive attitude towards including parents can contribute towards better decision making and outcomes for the child.
  • Different parents will require differing levels of support. They need to feel confident that they will be listened to and their input valued.
  • Some parents may require support that goes further than signposting to information and advice; for example, they may experience difficulties with accessibility and understanding. Local authorities, maintained schools and FEIs should provide support to parents to enable them to participate as fully as possible in meetings.


ID: 7870, revised 04/01/2023