The Association of Directors of Children’s Services has welcomed a recent government decision to abolish serious case reviews (SCRs).
The government responded to the recent publication of the Wood Report, a major review of child protection services, by pledging to replace the current system in which SCRs are held by a panel of frontline organisations whenever vulnerable or ‘looked after’ child dies or come to serious harm.
SCRs will be replaced with a new system of local and national reviews. A national panel, to be established by the government, will undertake reviews into the most serious cases, while those without national implications will be assessed on a local level.
Frontline organisations such as local authorities children’s departments, the Police and health services will remain central to the process but they will have a new freedom to make their own decisions.
The Association of Directors of Children’s Services has now voiced support for the changes. President Dave Hill said:
“Whilst we are still working through the full details we welcome Alan Wood’s report and broad recommendations…The ultimate prize of course is that more children and young people will be kept safe from harm and go on to live happy and successful lives.”
Mr Hill added:
“The current system of SCRs presents serious barriers, is too costly and time consuming and often by the time the review publishes local practice and sometimes policy has moved on significantly.”