Written Communication with Children and Young People


This chapter was updated in March 2023.

1. Overview

Written communication with children and young people should be done in a personal way that gives due regard for them to process the information presented to them. It should be conducted at an age appropriate level and personalised to the child and their family wherever appropriate.

2. Points to Consider

  • The child/young person should be sent their own copy of any correspondence, even if they live at the same address as their parents/carers who are being sent the same information;
  • Professionals should liaise with the child/young person to discuss their preference as to how they receive written communication – hard copies or electronic;
  • Additional consideration needs to be given when communicating with disabled children or children with additional needs. Professionals may consider using visual aids/images and alternative forms of written communication such as easy words and pictures;
  • No third party information should be shared with the child/young person without the permission of the person it concerns. The confidentiality of others and data protection responsibilities should be taken into account. The same applies to legally restricted information;
  • Whilst a central principle is to share information and communication with children/young people in their own right, exceptions need to be defined. For example, it would not be appropriate to share all information with a child/ young person;
  • If there are any concerns around written communication with a child/young person, these should be discussed with your line manager.