We are pleased to announce a two-year extension to the Bairns’ Hoose Pathfinder phase up to March 2027.

This extension follows broad engagement with key stakeholder groups, who were strongly in favour of an extension to the Pathfinder programme. We are pleased to confirm that Scottish Ministers have approved this extension, informed by our stakeholder engagement, and in recognition that more time is needed to embed transformative approaches in child protection.

In our engagement, stakeholders, including the Pathfinder and Affiliate partnerships and Government Group members, emphasised the need to get the fundamentals of Bairns’ Hoose right and not lose sight of the most important aspect – the outcomes for children and young people. With this extension, there will be more time to test the Bairns’ Hoose Standards and learn from implementation in different settings across Scotland. This will allow partners to accommodate the flexibility needed to ensure trauma informed, rights-based, and child-centred care, recognising that every child will have unique needs at each stage of their journey.

Bairns’ Hoose relies on complex multi-agency working and working across geographical local authorities, Police Divisions, and Health Board boundaries. We recognise this complexity of work and co-design, and want to allow time to take the care and consideration needed to deliver the best possible support for children and young people across Scotland.

We want to strike the right balance – ensuring that we move at pace to implement the model whilst also building in the necessary time to ensure learning from the Pathfinder phase. We very much look forward to continued working with partners through this extended period as we implement Bairns’ Hoose and the transformational change this represents for Scotland’s children.

If you have any questions about the extension or wider work of the Bairns’ Hoose programme, please get in touch at bairnshoose@gov.scot.


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