National guidance for child protection in Scotland 2021

This guidance describes the responsibilities and expectations for all involved in protecting children and will support the care and protection of children.

Appendix I: Practice insights introduction

The practice insights linked to this appendix are not part of the core Guidance and have not been subject to public consultation. They will be adapted and improved in response to evolving practice.

The practice insights have been drafted by practitioners, service managers and academics. The experience of children and families is integrated directly in some and indirectly in all. The topics chosen reflect interest and demand voiced in both construction of and public consultation about the core Guidance.

The notes are termed 'insights' because they are intended to:

  • illustrate and explain key practice considerations
  • offer a resource, in the form of windows on positive practice
  • prompt reflection, by providing perspectives from specific services
  • signpost selected sources that support practice development
  • It is essential that readers do not expect these insights to offer:
  • a multi-agency, national practice manual
  • a shortcut to application of the core Guidance
  • a protocol, which reduces the need for professional judgement in each situation
  • a replacement for any aspect of local multi-agency procedures
  • an academic review

The choice of topics is selective, reflecting requests arising during development of and consultation upon the revised National Guidance. The illustration and detail could not be captured efficiently in the core Guidance; and in some instances might lead to inconsistency. The list and the content may be adapted and improved, based on your feedback (contact and in response to evolving practice.

The topics include explanations of concepts, such as capacity to change; approaches, such as contextual safeguarding; indicators of good practice specific to phases of support and planning including pre-birth, or specific to areas of concern, such as domestic abuse. Some specific tools are introduced, such as chronologies and usage of timelines.

A connecting theme should be apparent in all topics. This is about strengthening engagement with children and families in child protection work. Some insights are explicitly focussed on this theme, for example in considering participation of children and young people in planning meetings and making plans accessible to them. A shared lens should be apparent in all topics. This is about realising children's rights.

The practice insights can be found in the supporting documents alongside this Guidance.



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