Launch of supervision order survey - 15th Feb 2021

Nuffield FJO is launching a new consultation seeking views about supervision orders and their use in care proceedings. The survey relates to those cases where a stand-alone supervision order was made in relation to at least one of the children involved in the proceedings (in other words the supervision order was not attached to another order such as a Child Arrangements Order or an SGO). We want to hear from parents, family members and professionals who have been involved in care proceedings in the last six years where a supervision order was made.

The survey will open today, 15 February and will be open for three weeks until 8 March 2021.

Supervision orders are often made at the end of care proceedings if children are returning home or remaining at home instead of going into care. The Public Law Working Group is undertaking a wholesale review of supervision orders at the request of the President of the Family Division to consider whether they may be made a more effective and robust order. The sub-group is being led by Mr Justice Keehan and Professor Judith Harwin. Recent national research by Professor Harwin and colleagues at the University of Lancaster has raised some queries about the usefulness of supervision orders, as well as demonstrating the wide variation in practice across courts in relation to the making of such orders and across local authorities in relation to their implementation.

The survey has a number of different sections for completion by different groups of professionals, and for parents and family members. The survey will take approximately 10-15 minutes to complete.

In addition to this survey, researchers at the University of Lancaster will be conducting focus groups and interviews with parents. If you are a parent who would like to take part in a focus group or interview, please contact Judith Harwin ( or Lily Golding (; 07511 555990) at the University of Lancaster. 

If you are working with parents who currently have a child with a supervision order, or who have recently experienced this, please encourage them to complete the survey or, if they would prefer to be interviewed, please share the contact information for Judith Harwin and Lily Golding.

If you are a parent and in contact with local authority children’s services and would like advice about your situation or child’s situation we regret that we cannot provide advice but please see this page where there are details of organisations who can help you.

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