Publication - Independent report

Harmful sexual behaviour by children and young people: Expert Group report

This report sets out proposals from the Expert Group on Preventing Sexual Offending Involving Children and Young People to improve prevention and early intervention in response to harmful sexual behaviour involving children and young people.

Harmful sexual behaviour by children and young people: Expert Group report
Annex K: Self-Audit Tool based on NSPCC Audit Tool

Annex K: Self-Audit Tool based on NSPCC Audit Tool

Self-Evaluation Tool for Child Protection Committees

To Review Existing Processes and Practices in Relation to inappropriate and abusive sexual behaviour displayed in childhood and adolescence

October 2018

Guidance for Lead Officers completing this self evaluation tool

What is this self evaluation about?

The Scottish Government created an Expert Group on Preventing Sexual Offending involving Children and Young People in November 2017.

The Group's focus is on prevention and early intervention which can be delivered by universal services around sexual behaviour by children and young people which harms them and harms other children and young people. This self evaluation will help provide a broad picture of current policy and practice to inform the work of the Expert Group, which will report back to Ministers in March 2019.

The Expert Group wants to know what is currently available and what may be needed to strengthen early intervention, with a primary focus on universal services (education, health and wellbeing) and also further specialist interventions where these are required.i

What does it look at?

The survey is concerned with the whole continuum of children's sexual behaviours, as shown in the diagram below. It is about supporting children of all ages, from pre-school to 18, of both sexes, including children with and without disabilities, their parents, carers and the education, health and social work professionals who work with them.

The National Child Protection Guidance (2014, p.127) says:

"Harmful or problematic sexual behaviour in children and young people can be difficult to identify. It is not always easy to distinguish between what is abusive and/or inappropriate and what constitutes normal adolescent experimentation. Practitioners' ability to determine if a child's sexual behaviour is developmentally typical, inappropriate or abusive will be based on an understanding of what constitutes healthy sexual behaviour in childhood as well as issues of informed consent, power imbalance and exploitation."

The continuum of children and young people's sexual behaviours (Hackett, 2010)

Infographic:

Continuum of CYP sexual behaviours

Infographic text:

Normal

  • Developmentally expected
  • Socially acceptable
  • Consensual, mutual, reciprocal
  • Shared decision making

Inappropriate

  • Single instances of inappropriate sexual behaviour
  • Socially acceptable behaviour within peer group
  • Context for behaviour may be inappropriate
  • Generally consensual and reciprocal

Problematic

  • Problematic and concerning behaviours
  • Developmentally unusual and socially unexpected
  • No overt elements of victimisation
  • Consent issues may be unclear
  • May lack reciprocity or equal power
  • May includes levels of compulsivity

Abusive

  • Victimising intent or outcome
  • Includes misuse of power
  • Coercion and force to ensure victim compliance
  • Intrusive
  • Informed consent lacking or not able to be freely given by victim
  • May include elements of expressive violence

Violent

  • Physically violent sexual abuse
  • Highly intrusive
  • Instrumental violence which is physiologically and/or sexually arousing to the perpetrator
  • Sadism

What will the information be used for?

The information from this self evaluation will not be used to single out local areas for criticism. Responses will be treated in confidence and local areas will be anonymised in any public output. Findings from the self-evaluation will help inform recommendations in the final report to ministers by the Expert Group that is likely to be a public document.

We want to gain an honest assessment of the current situation, including views about what kinds of support and investment would help improve how we meet children's needs. The self evaluation will help the Expert Group:

  • identify areas of strength and areas for improvement
  • work out priorities for action and assess the resources needed

Completing the self evaluation: who to involve

We are asking you to complete the survey with reference to the area covered by your CPC.

The questionnaire has a multi-agency focus, and consultation with officers in the relevant agencies is needed to complete it. It is helpful for us to know which agencies have been involved in the response and we ask for details of this at the end of the questionnaire.

You may find it helpful to hold a teleconference or meeting with key individuals to discuss the questions.

We are interested in capturing local views and opinions and welcome as much detail as you can provide in the open questions.

If you have any queries whilst completing this, please contact [name, email address, phone number]

If you don't know or are unsure of the answer to any question please say so.

The survey is structured around the following:

Local policy and guidance - for supporting staff dealing with situations where children or young people display sexually inappropriate, problematic or abusive sexual behaviour.

Primary prevention - keeping children and young people from becoming involved in any form of inappropriate, problematic or abusive sexual behaviour.

Secondary prevention - supporting children and young people who are victims of, or who display, inappropriate or problematic sexual behaviour.

Tertiary prevention - supporting and rehabilitating those children and young people who display abusive or violent sexual behaviour.

A. Local policies and guidance - supporting staff when children or young people display sexually inappropriate, problematic or abusive sexual behaviour.

Your Child Protection Committee

Please describe how your local Child Protection Procedures require agencies to respond to concerning sexual behaviour.

[Please provide information here]

Is there a multi-agency protocol in place in your CPC area for supporting children and young people who display inappropriate, problematic or abusive sexual behaviour?

Yes

No

Don't know

If yes, please provide details and attach the document if available

 

Are you aware of any agency-specific protocols, e.g. for education staff, residential care staff or for health staff, amongst the agencies represented on your CPC?

[Please provide comments and information about this here]

Is any data about children and young people with concerning sexual behaviour reported to your CPC?

Yes

No

Don't know

Please provide details and attach an example if available

 

If yes:

Yes

No

Don't know

Does the data include numbers of children and young people requiring support in relation to concerning sexual behaviour?

[If yes please specify if there is information on those children and young people who have been harmed by sexual behaviour of children and young people as well as those causing harm]

Is data collected on the age and sex of children?

Is data collected on the ethnicity of children?

Is data collected on whether children have additional support needs or a disability, including a learning disability or communication difficulties?

Does the data include the number of cases which go to multi-agency meetings?

Does the data include a report on outcomes of multiagency intervention?

Please provide any other comment about how the data is used

Education authorities

Please provide details of your local policy and procedures for responding to concerns about sexual behaviour, including youth-produced sexual imagery (sexting) and / or peer on peer sexual violence.

[Please provide details and attach a copy of your local policy if available]

Do your education establishments record concerns about inappropriate, problematic or abusive sexual behaviour presented by children or young people?

Yes

No

Don't know

[Please provide any additional information about this]

 

If yes:

Please provide details

Is there a specified level or threshold for concerns which determines whether these are recorded?

What specifically is recorded by schools?

Where are these records kept? (within the school, or with the education authority/on SEEMIS?)

Please tick the appropriate response

Yes

No

Don't know

If yes, please provide details

Does the education authority extract, analyse and report this data?

Is it reported to any council committees or to the CPC?

If yes, please state which

B. Primary Prevention - keeping children and young people from becoming involved in any form of inappropriate, problematic or abusive sexual behaviour

Education Authorities

Does the health and wellbeing curriculum that is delivered in schools include areas such as consent, harmful sexual behaviour and power imbalance?

Yes

No

Don't know

If yes, please provide examples from the curriculum

 

Are any specific prevention or awareness programmes or sessions delivered in any of your schools (or other settings e.g. youth clubs, residential units etc.) which deal with issues of consent and/or power imbalances, for example, violence reduction, gender based violence, sexual abuse prevention?

If so, please give brief details of:

  • the name and the service/organisation which delivers it,
  • the type of group targeted (e.g. by age, disabilities, vulnerability etc),
  • type of content, and whether this is evaluated.

Yes

No

Don't know

If yes, please provide brief information separately for each of the following as relevant: early years establishments, primary schools, secondary schools, special schools, or residential settings

-

C. Secondary prevention - supporting children and young people who are victims of or who display inappropriate or problematic sexual behaviour

Your Child Protection Committee

Yes

No

Don't know

[Please provide details]

Does your CPC provide multi-agency training which focuses on healthy, inappropriate, and problematic sexual behaviours?

If yes:

Is this mandatory?

Yes

No

Don't know

 

Which occupational groups of staff attend?

[Please provide details]

Education authorities

Yes

No

Don't know

[Please provide details]

Does your implementation of the GIRFEC approach in schools involve anything which addresses inappropriate or problematic sexual behaviour, including for example, sharing of youth-produced sexual images or sharing of pornography?

Do staff in schools and centres have opportunities to engage in professional learning related to problematic sexual behaviour?

Do staff in all agencies have access to specialist consultation and advice in relation to cases of problematic sexual behaviour?

If yes, which groups of staff are supported and who provides that service?

D. Tertiary prevention - supporting and rehabilitating those children and young people who display abusive or violent sexual behaviour

Yes

No

Don't know

[Please provide details]

Do children who display abusive sexual behaviour have an identified lead professional and single child's plan?

How well do your child protection processes operate in practice to meet the needs of children presenting with concerning sexual behaviour?

Please answer in relation to:

  • What is working well?
  • What are the barriers to effective working?

Does your CPC do any quality assurance around these processes?

Yes

No

Don't know

If yes, please describe what this consists of.

 

For children resident in your CPC area:

Yes

No

Don't know

If yes, please provide the name of the service and the organisation which delivers it.

Is there a specialist service in your area for children and young people who display abusive and violent sexual behaviour? This may include, for example, provision for children with learning disabilities who display problematic sexual behaviour.

Are therapeutic recovery services available locally for children and young people who have been sexually abused by other children or adolescents? Please include both statutory and third sector provision in your response.

If yes, please provide the name of the service and the organisation which delivers it.

Is any of this provision for children aged 12 or under?

Have any specialist services ceased to be offered locally in the last 5 years?

If yes, what was the impact of this?

Within your local agencies, which occupational groups are trained in evidence based interventions in relation to children and young people who display abusive sexual behaviour? Please state if you don't know or are unsure

Please comment in relation to:

Interventions for children under 12 years

Interventions for young people over 12 years

Finally, please provide details of any individuals who assisted with completing this response:

Name / Job title / Agency or service

We may like to get in touch in relation to examples of good practice that can be referred to in the final report. Please can you provide contact details so we can get in touch.

Name:

Email:

Phone number:

On behalf of the Expert Group, thank you very much for your help


Contact

Email: Child_Protection@gov.scot