Presentation on theme: "A Pan London Learning Event"— Presentation transcript:
1 A Pan London Learning Event WELCOMETHE STRENGHTENING FAMILIES APPROACH TO CHAIRING CHILD PROTECTION CONFERENCESA Pan London Learning Event
2 Introducing the model – Jacquie Burke – Wandsworth What is the modelThe model in the UKThe model as a whole service interventionInternational context
3 Signs of Safety - what is the model? The Signs of Safety approach to child protection casework was developed by Andrew Turnell and Steve Edwards in Western Australia in 1990sThe approach now being utilised across Western Australian and in jurisdictions in the U.S.A., Canada, U.K., Sweden, Denmark, Finland, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Australia and Japan.
4 Signs of Safety – what is the model? One of the greatest problems to bedevil child protection practice is that assessment and planning processes privilege the professional voice and erase the perspectives of children, parents and other family members.
5 Signs of safety – what is the model? Focus on the assessment and not the toolHow you do the work WITH and not TO children and their familiesRigour and Grace - Clear idea of why you are doing what you are doing with families and a sense of connectedness to those familiesIf what you are doing is not working try something differentYour questions are you power tools – use them thoughtfully and purposefully
6 Core principlesConstructive working relationships between professionals and family membersAdopting a position of curiosity – as soon as a professional decides they know the truth they begin to ignore other new evidencePutting the thinking back with practitionersChildren and families are the arbiters of whether what we do is working
7 Key disciplinesAll statements must be made in simple everyday languageStatements must focus on specific observable behaviours and avoid value laden languageSkilful use of authorityAssessment as a work in progress rather than a set piece
8 Signs of Safety in the UK Child protection conferences barely changed since late 1980s.Not the registration that protects the child.THANK YOU WEST BERKSHIRE.Engaging parents as part of the solution.CP process test of ‘willingness to co-operate’.Parents freeze at decision to make a CP plan.Professionals head for the door!
9 Child Protection Conferences LayoutRefreshmentsChair facilitates and challengesFamily speaks first and gets opportunity to respondJargon freeClear and transparent mapping of concerns and strengthsRisk statementPlan – focus on bringing about changeDecision last
11 What information is collected What are we worried about?Harm/dangerComplicating factorsGrey areasWhat is going well?StrengthsSafetyWhat will we do next?The plan
12 Whole Service Approach 6 authorities in the SE working with Resolutions ConsultancyWhole service approach – training from DCS to social workersSafety planning, 3 houses, words and picturesMulti-agency trainingAppreciative EnquiryConsistent language across the partnership that is jargon free and represents a holistic view of family functioning and child safety.
13 Whole Service Approach Needs senior management buy-inValues critical thinking and challengeLets go of the easy answer to wicked problemsEncourages not the assertion of a definitive truth but asking penetrating rigorous questions focused on the five domains.The senior management solution of making fast judgements, giving strong direction and what needs to happen can undermine and stunt worker development.
14 Western Australia Year 1 1/3 on board, 1/3 on the fence 1/3 sitting it outLanguage, concepts penetrating, lots of enthusiasm and drive visibleBut, a lot of old wine in new bottles
15 Western Australia Year 2 2/3 on board Staff survey – 64% with greater job satisfactionfamilies’ better understanding of issues and expectationsFramework providing clarity and focus for child protection workBetter partnership workingBetter decision making
16 Western Australia Year 3 Growth in children in care reduced from 13% to 5%Assessments leading to intensive family support increasing from 2.5% to 13%Assessments leading to protection and care applications reduced (reduced 24%)Recidivism no change at 6.9%Endless challenge to build practice depth and skill
17 Model fidelity?The Signs of Safety approach should not be regarded as a fixed product (like say a box of cornflakes) rather it continues to evolve.
18 Implementing the approach- The Barnet Experience Liz Shaw
19 Why did we want to do it?Learning from the Brent experience-message it is do-able, didn’t rely on model fidelity, can bespokeEngagement from our group of chairsA person centred no brainer - better parent participationChance to modernise CPCs - improve analysis and avoid narrative in info share and planningPotential efficiency savings – admin time and almost free to doMinutes template refreshing, LCPP compliant
20 How did we do it?Project plan to Barnet SCB- they held authority for model, logo on templates etcPreparation briefings for all agenciesPilot approved sample CPCs- started end 2011Evaluation event Feb 2012Pilot rolled out to all CPCs April 2012Second evaluation event June 2012SCB approved model ongoing basis Sept 2012
21 Involving Partners Broad consensus to do it Leads for agencies cascaded info and fed into planning groupChairs prepared pilot practitionersEvaluation sought from attendees and leadsDiscussions on multi agency forms and templates eg police/GPs use alternative/CS use core asst
22 Preparing ParentsCurrent leaflet didn’t conflict with model but insert added in simple languageChairs called all parents for initial pilotFeedback form from parents after all CPCsProps for parents eg to enable them to take notes
23 Involving the ChildHave funding for advocacy for CPCs but still in tendering processCreated a specific column on white board for the child’s wishes and feelings to keep the child “in the room”Model has not increased participation of children as yet
24 Practical considerations Don’t use electronic white board. Have trad. white boards to view all info “at a glance”Minute takers attend and can type direct into minutes templateMinutes format being loaded onto ICS to eliminate separate word version
25 Evaluation - themes Practicalities – physical use of space Involvement of child/parentInfo sharing under 6 dimensionsRisk analysis – scalingThe PlanThresholding/decision makingRecording/minutes
26 Evaluation cont Feedback from partners positive Parents prefer it to the old modelChairs like it but meetings are more physically demanding and intenseAmendments to tools eg scaling exercise, order of phases of the CPCAre there any differences in style of CP plans eg SMARTer?Has it cut our numbers of plans?