University of Stirling makes new investment in education and training in the field of Child Welfare and Protection

23 July 2010

There is unprecedented policy development in Scotland aimed at addressing the needs of children whose development and well-being may be compromised by social, family and individual circumstances. The professionals from all disciplines working in this challenging and complex field require access to high quality training and education.

In response to this need for specialised professional development the University of Stirling has invested in a new programme of education and training in the field of Child Welfare and Protection. The latest development in this field is a new MSc award MSc Applied Studies (Child Welfare and Protection).

Course Content includes:

  • Current Issues and debates in Child Welfare and Protection
  • Developing Practitioner and Organisational Capacity
  • Risk and Decision Making
  • Collaborative Practice
  • Research Design and Process.

To apply for a place on the course contact Veronica Collins on

A Graduate Certificate in Child Welfare and Protection (SCQF Level 10) is also available. Contact Duncan Helm on

For more information on the full range of CPD courses offered by the University of Stirling visit the website

Consultation Growing up in Scotland team seeking views on data to be collected for future cohort

15 July 2010

Growing Up in Scotland is a longitudinal study that follows the lives of three cohorts of Scottish children from the early years, through childhood into adulthood. GUS provides information to support policy making and is also a broader resource for academics, the voluntary sector and other interested parties. Further information about the study can be found on their website:

In January 2011 Growing Up in Scotland (GUS) is starting a new birth cohort . GUS is now developing the questionnaire for the interviews when the children are 10 months old and would like to give you the opportunity to have a say on the topics and type of questions to include.

The feedback document lists all the topics of the proposed questionnaire and offers space for your comments. It also asks you to let GUS know if there are any new topics that you would like to see as part of the questionnaire.

Click here to download the form. Please return the completed form by email to, by Friday 30 July.

Child Abuse Review call for papers for 2011 Special Issue Public Health Approaches to Safeguarding Children

15 July 2010

Child Abuse Review are inviting research papers that examine the challenges and opportunities in adopting public health approaches to safeguarding, protecting and promoting the wellbeing of children including the prevention of child maltreatment. Papers that address the global and international context will be of particular interest. Analysis and evaluation of policy and practice initiatives are also sought as are papers that address the views and experiences of children and young people, particularly around early intervention.

The publication welcome examples of research, policy and practice from a range of settings – health, social care, education, youth and criminal justice and from the non-statutory sector.

If you would like to discuss a possible contribution, please contact one of the editors for this special issue: Sue Smith or Sue Peckover at

For further details on submission please visit the website.

Scottish Government launch guidance on partnership working between allied health professions and education

07 July 2010

The publication offers guidance to support improved partnership working between education and allied health professions services. It discusses the impact of partnership working on outcomes for children and young people and highlights features of good practice looking at: different ways of supporting children and young people; parents as partners; planning for better partnership working; planning and working together to support young people; and joint continuing professional development and self-evaluation. The guidance also considers the importance of good leadership skills in encouraging partnership working. Appendices include: a list of all Allied Health Professions (AHPs), a summary of the engagement processes; tools for self-evaluation and improvement planning; a summary of legislation and policy; and an Allied Health Professions Practice Matrix.

Available on the internet at

Scottish Government publishes guidance on Looked After Children (Scotland) Regulations 2009 and the Adoption and Children (Scotland) Act 2007

07 July 2010

The publication Introduces the general themes and principles for looked after children and sets out the regulations concerned with care planning, information and assessment. It addresses parental involvement and contact between children and their families. It also covers arrangements for children subject to home supervision and looks at kinship care. The guidance draws attention to fostering regulations and deals with allowances and emergency measures. It also sets out guidance for adoption agencies covering key functions of the panel, duties when considering adoption for a child, applications for a permanence order, placement for adoption, and allowances.

Further details available at

National conference booking open - Making Significant Case Reviews fit for purpose?

06 July 2010

Booking open for national conference - Making SCRs fit for purpose?

Jointly organised by the Multi-Agency Resource Centre (MARS), the Scottish Child Care and Protection Network (SCCPN) and the Centre for Learning in Child Protection (CLiCP), this national conference will promote best practice in significant case reviews.

Recent high profile cases have once again brought into sharp focus the question of how best to review child deaths and serious cases and effect learning from their findings in a way that does not blame or demoralise professionals.

Scotland has had national guidance in relation to signifi cant case reviews (SCRs) since 2007. Prior to this each local authority had its own process for reviewing and learning from child deaths and serious cases of abuse and neglect. The Scottish guidance contains principles similar to England, Wales and Northern Ireland but there are also key differences in the arrangements. Reform or discussion about reform of these processes is currently underway in each of the four countries.

In Scotland, a working group, chaired by Beth Smith, Director of the MARS, recently considered the options for enhancing skills and the capacity to undertake significant case reviews. Bringing together members with practice and research expertise, the group considered:

  • how can we best inform learning and practice development as a result of reviews
  • what training might be required for review teams, including identifying a skill set for the lead reviewer or chair
  • what practical aids could help local child protection committees undertaking SCRs
  • what would be the scope and purpose of an analysis of reviews undertaken since 2007

This conference will include consideration of the work of the group in addition to subsequent developments in Scotland.

The conference provides professionals with an opportunity to learn from research and practice across the UK and contribute to the development of best practice in Scotland. Click here to find out more.

Children's Hearings Reform: Improving the Lives of Children in Scotland

02 July 2010

The Minister for Children and Early Years, Adam Ingram, members of the Education, Lifelong Learning and Culture Committee and other Members of the Scottish Parliament debated the Bill in the main chamber earlier in June.

The office report of the debate can be viewed here

While supporting the general principles of the Bill, the Committee and the Parliament raised a number of issues on which they would like the Scottish Government to provide further information. These include the establishment of Children's Hearings Scotland, the role and powers of the National Convener, the implications of children accepting offence grounds, the definition of relevant person and child confidentiality. The Minister undertook to work through these issues and provide the information requested to help provide clarity and reassurance. The team continue to work with partners to develop the processes that will underpin the proposals contained in the Children's Hearings (Scotland) Bill.

For more information on the reform of the Children's Hearings system and regional events can be found here.

Go Outdoors! guidance and good practice on encouraging outdoor activities in residential child care

02 July 2010

The guidance from Scotland's Commissioner for Children and Young People (SCCYP) & Scottish Institute for Residential Child Care (SIRCC), aims to tackle the risk averse culture that sees children miss out on outdoor activities because staff fear being sued or blamed if an accident occurs. Go Outdoors! is designed to help practitioners working with looked after children to carry out their duty of care safely and responsibly, and also has lessons for others working with children.

The document follows up on the Commissioner's 2007 Playing it Safe report

Visit the SCCYP website at or download Go Outdoors! Here

Scoping project - Child Trafficking in Scotland

01 July 2010

Tam Baillie, Scotland's Commissioner for Children and Young People has commissioned a scoping study commissioned into issues surrounding child trafficking in Scotland. He is seeking your assistance to complete a short questionnaire (approximately 10 minutes to complete).

The study is being carried out on his behalf by a team led by Professor Rebecca Wallace, Centre for Rural Childhood, UHI (Millennium Institute).

Follow this link to the questionnaire -