Publication - Advice and guidance

National Guidance for Child Protection Committees for Conducting a Significant Case Review

Published: 31 Mar 2015
Children and Families Directorate
Part of:
Communities and third sector

This guidance has been superseded by the 2021 Learning Review guidance, available at

National Guidance for Child Protection Committees for Conducting a Significant Case Review
Annex 3

Annex 3

Person specification for lead reviewer

The skills and qualities required for the lead reviewer, both internal and external, include:

Leading and directing

  • Consider practice experience required for person chairing review - this may differ depending on the particular circumstances of the case
  • Responsible for ensuring the required skills and experiences of the Review Team are made available
  • Role of body/person setting terms of reference and providing progress reports
  • Should have no preconceived views of the case/outcome
  • Quality - ability to set out ground rules


  • Should have a broad knowledge of protecting children, particularly in a Scottish context.

Analytical skills

  • Those chairing/leading reviews must have the ability to interpret and analyse complex multi-agency processes and information.
  • Know where, and from whom, to get specific information or expertise
  • Logical thinking and ability to map out review process
  • Need to understand the context in which services are delivered
  • Ability to identify and manage competing interests in an SCR (for example, professional; political, organisation; public, media)

Person qualities

  • Those conducting reviews need to be open minded, fair, a good listener and a logical thinker.
  • Experience of practice at various levels across an organisation
  • A blend of confidence and humility (to be prepared to learn)
  • Need to understand professional backgrounds of those involved and be a multi-agency team player

Skills for undertaking the review

  • Approachable
  • Knowledge of child development and skills in communicating with children and young people
  • Risk assessment/management
  • Ability to challenge constructively
  • Open mindedness/fairness
  • Good listener
  • Fair person
  • Logical thinking
  • Emotional intelligence
  • The interviewing of significant witnesses takes time and must be undertaken with perseverance and with sensitivity
  • Consider practice experience for those undertaking review - this may differ depending on circumstances of the case being reviewed