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5.15 Bedrooms


The Quality and Purpose of Care Standard


Section 5, Alarms and Monitoring Devices was amended in August 2015 and should be re-read.


  1. Bedroom Furniture, Facilities, Equipment and Decoration
  2. Bedroom Security and Keys
  3. Staff/carers Presence in Bedrooms
  4. Visiting and Sharing Rooms
  5. Alarms and Monitoring Devices

1. Bedroom Furniture, Facilities, Equipment and Decoration

Children's bedrooms should be pleasantly furnished, equipped and decorated in a manner appropriate to their individual needs, interests and choices.

Children should be encouraged to personalise their bedrooms, with posters, pictures and personal items of their choice.

Children of an appropriate age and level of understanding should be encouraged and supported to purchase furniture, equipment or decorations; preferably as part of a plan to prepare the child for independence.

2. Bedroom Security and Keys

Children should have adequate, safe, storage for their belongings and medicines, if permitted to administer their own.

If it is necessary to do so, to protect children or their belongings or to develop their sense of independence, bedrooms may be fitted with locks or other forms of security. If locks are fitted, keys may be made available to children.

3. Staff/carers Presence in Bedrooms

Children's privacy should be respected.

Unless there are exceptional circumstances, staff should knock the door before entering children's bedrooms; and then only enter with their permission.

The exceptional circumstances where staff may have to enter a child's bedroom without knocking or asking permission are as follow:

  • To wake a heavy sleeper, undertake cleaning, return or remove soiled clothing; though, in these circumstances, the child should have been told/warned that this may be necessary;
  • To take necessary action, including forcing entry, to protect the child or others from injury or to prevent likely damage to property. The taking of such action is a form of Physical Intervention.

See Use of Restraint and Physical Intervention Procedure.

4. Visiting and Sharing Rooms

Children placed on an emergency basis may not share bedrooms (other than with siblings) until an assessment has been carried out to ascertain their views and the views of those who already sleep in the bedroom. Apart from this, a request to change or share a bedroom will be given serious consideration by the Home’s Manager.

However, not more than two children may share a bedroom and children may not share bedrooms unless the child(ren) freely agree to the arrangement, they are of the same gender and similar age (other than siblings). Before coming to a decision, the Home’s Manager will undertake an assessment to ascertain the wishes and views of the child who already occupies the bedroom and will consult relevant social workers.

Children may not receive visitors in their bedrooms unless has been agreed by the social worker, the children's views and wishes have been obtained, considered and the arrangements are outlined in the relevant Placement Plan.

5. Alarms and Monitoring Devices

Homes must gain consent to any monitoring or surveillance by the placing authority in writing of the placement. The use of CCV is regulated by the Protection of Freedoms Act 2012 and the Surveillance Camera Code of Conduct (Home Office 2013).

To ensure the safety of the young person or others, it may be appropriate to monitor exit and entry from a child's bedroom outside of normal waking hours with the use of a silent alarm that is triggered when a door is opened.

Such devices may only be used if outlined in the Home's Statement of Purpose and the arrangements set out in relevant Children's Placement Plans.

If used, every effort must be made to ensure the child's privacy, dignity and rights whilst the system is in use:

  • The use of these alarms is outlined fully in the homes statement of purpose;
  • Their use is assessed on an individual basis and agreed to in the care plan by a social worker;
  • The child is made fully aware of their use and the reasons why the decision is made;
  • The use of the door alarms is reviewed regularly as to their appropriateness of use.