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Case Reviews Training

The information on this page forms part of your training. Please ensure you read it thoroughly before attending the virtual event.

Welcome to the Case Reviews Training. On this page and in the accompanying virtual briefing we will be covering the following objectives:

  • To understand the purpose of Reviews
  • To reflect on learning from both National and Local cases

You should undertake this training as directed by your line manager and be aware of your own well-being. If you are upset by anything in this module you should seek support from your manager or a colleague.

What is a Case Review?

When a child has been seriously harmed or died, and abuse or neglect is suspected or known to have happened, and there are concerns about the way agencies worked together, then the Wirral Safeguarding Children Partnership (WSCP) will undertake a Serious Case Review (SCR) (as defined in Working Together to Safeguard Children 2015). From September 2019 these are now called Child Safeguarding Practice Reviews (CSPR’s). When cases like this occur it’s important that a Review is undertaken so lessons can be learnt to reduce the risk of future harm to children.

Findings and recommendations from SCR’s and CSPR’s will usually be published in full in a report, which are publicly available. The purpose of SCRs and CSPR’s is to learn from what happened in individual cases so that future tragedies can be prevented.

The process of Review

When a child is harmed or died and there is concern about the way a case is managed the Local Authority makes a notification to the National Panel and Ofsted. The National Panel has oversight of all Reviews and is the Body that decides what type of Review should be undertaken. The National Panel will ask the Local Authority to undertake a Rapid Review to assess the case against the threshold. This request will come to the Case Review Committee who allocate the Review and monitor the progression of the case. This Review has to be completed within 15 days. The result of the Rapid Review is four-fold: there is no learning in the case so no Review is required; the case does not meet the threshold but can still be reviewed; the case meets the threshold for a Child Safeguarding Practice Review; the learning is of national interest and so may become part of a wider National Review.

Different types of Review

Learning Review: In this case there is identified learning but the case does not meet the threshold for a Child Safeguarding Practice Review (CSPR) . In these cases the Review is undertaken locally by someone from the Case Review Committee. The Review is completed in the same timescale as a CSPR and recommendations are published in the same way. Publishing of the report is not statutory but in most cases on the Wirral they are.

CSPR: In this case the threshold is met and a Review is arranged using an Independent Author. This is someone qualified to undertake the Review who is in no way affiliated with the local area or agencies. The Review is undertaken with a timescale of completion 12 months after the decision to carry out a Review is made. The report and recommendations in these cases are published unless there is a valid reason for not doing so.

National Reviews: This is a new type or Review undertaken on a specific theme. The Panel identify the theme based on the cases being referred through and combine the learning from a number of these cases. The first National Review called It Was Hard To Escape, considered learning from cases where Child Sexual Exploitation was a key concern, was published in March 2020. Click here to see report; It was hard to escape

Meeting the threshold

In order for a case to meet the criteria for a CSPR it has to meet the threshold identified as:

where ‘abuse or neglect of a child is known or suspected, and the child has died or been seriously harmed’

It is important to recognise that this seems to be quite a broad threshold. The challenge is being able to identify the level of harm both short and longer term the child has suffered. Once the Rapid Review has been completed the recommended level of Review is sent to the National Panel. The Panel makes the final decision.

Process of the Review

Whether a Learning Review or a CSPR the process followed will be the same. Timescale of the Review is agreed and chronologies are requested from any agencies that may have had contact with the child/family. Once chronologies are received back, key questions are pulled out and a Professionals meeting is called to explore these. The Professionals around the table are asked to consider these questions or Key Practice Episodes, to identify why  decisions were made. This allows the Reviewer to start to draw out learning about practice, policy, and process. The final report is written with recommendations based on this learning, and these recommendations are put into a plan and allocated to different agencies strategic leads to carry out. The Case Review Committee oversees completion of these recommendations.

Outcome of the Review

As a result of the learning from a Review, there will be changes implemented. This could be a change in process, re-writing or re-issue of a policy, training for staff, or changes to working arrangements. This changes are published and have to be implemented within a set timescale.

To see some of our recent Case Reviews please click on the link below:

Next steps

To attend a virtual session click on the link below of the session you wish to attend:

15th April 2021

Please ensure you have registered for training before attempting to book a place. Each individual person requires their own registration – do not book places for other people, they will not be recorded as having attended and will not receive a certificate