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Lucie
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hi.

Im doing some research on legislation and provision.

I've chosen to focus on how early childhood provision and social services correspond when dealing with an issue of child protection. I need to look at this in respect of recent legislation - which is the Children Act 2004 and the green paper Every Child matters.

 

Can you tell me how (if it has) this legislation has affected any communication that practitioners have with social services?

i.e are they now easier to contact? :o

is it easier to access information?

 

Do you feel that this legislation was necessary - why?

 

Obviously child protection is never an easy matter, and without having gone through the procedure of referral etc i am unsure as to what impact this legislation has had which is why i am asking for your expertise!! :)

 

thanks

laura x

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I am aware but not fully conversant that the new Childcare Act 2006 may have some reference to ensuring that LAC (looked after children) are given more opportunities and access to all services with regard to the 5 outcomes, especially the Enjoying and Achieving outcome. Recent research has shown that LAC are under achieving in vast numbers compared to non LAC. This report will impact on how social services plan around the child.

 

It may be useful for you to research the DFES Area child protection committee webpage, I tried to get you a link but my computer has slowed to a snails pace.

 

 

Another useful site maybe the Fostering Network, who may have info on up to date legislation and its releance to LAC.

 

Good luck.

 

Peggy

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We have contacted social services because we thought a child was potentially an abuse victim. There were quite a few small concerns. They said we should discuss our concerns with the parents first (a very abusive father and a mother who burst into tears every two minutes). We thought that the child had a cigarette burn on her arm and we referred only to find that the consultant was not concerned. Although a nurse (the child had medical needs aswell) had raised the same concerns about the same mark. We also knew that if we said anything to the parents they would just remove the child from nursery and she would be at a greater risk (they had taken her out of nursery before because we tried to get a health visitor to support mum)

 

We have had referrals from social services to place children at nursery and they have not shared information as to why social services are involved. When we have tried to find out we have been told that the named social worker has left/changed/signed them off* (choose one of the options lol) and they do not know who is dealing with the cases.

 

We had children who started nursery who were on the child protection list and we were not informed that dad was a potential threat to staff and children. It was only by chance that we found out that there was an issue. The information certainly wasn't routinely passed on.

 

If you read the report that followed Michael Stone's appeal they said that although the individual services were doing their jobs correctly, because of political correctness, confidentiality and human rights issues each agency has not been able to pass information on to another. This is certainly what we have found. Every time we have contacted anyone be it medical, social services, SEN - even if it is a minor issue we have had to have a signed letter from the parents agreeing to the information being shared. So if there have been child protection concerns the information just doesn't get shared because either the parent does not give permission or the other agencies are not able to share their concerns. I just feel that these families can still slip through the net even though many agencies may have worries.

 

As you can tell it is something that I feel really strongly about and I have real concerns about these at risk children

Sue

 

Sorry forgot to say that I have no idea if this is worse or better than pre 2004 as I wasn't as involved in SEN and child protection then.

Sue

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