On agreement that a case meets the criteria for a CSPR a panel of senior managers who were not directly involved in the case will meet to look at the work of all the professionals and agencies who have been involved, and set terms of reference under which the review will be undertaken. Each organisation will produce an independent report containing full details of when and what services they gave the family.
The CSPR panel will be supported and advised by an independent reviewer, who is a specialist in child protection and CSPR. The reviewer considers all the reports and writes an independent overview report that looks at whether expected standards of practice have been met, if policies and procedures were followed, and whether there are any lessons that can be learned about the way organisations work together to keep children and young people safe.
When a review has been completed, organisations will agree what actions they need to take to change the way they support children, young people and their families and these will be monitored by us.
We aim to complete reviews within six months, however, this timescale may be impacted by other parallel processes, such as criminal investigations, coroner inquests, or family proceedings.
Once a decision has been made to start a CSPR, we will ask the relevant agencies to identify authors to write their independent agency report. The authors will be invited to attend an author’s briefing where they will meet the independent reviewer and receive guidance on what is required for the report.
Following this, the authors will be encouraged to identify any practitioners within their agency who worked with the family. They will meet with you to discuss the case, your involvement, and your perspective on what aspects of the system influenced you as a worker. The author from your agency will provide you with a letter from the independent reviewer, explaining the review process and inviting you to practitioner learning events.
The style and format of the practitioner learning events may vary for each review; however, the aim is for all the practitioners who worked with the family during the agreed timescales to meet and discuss their views and identify key learning areas from the case.
Part of the role of your agency’s report author and panel member is to provide support to you during this process and you will be allowed to bring a colleague with you for support at practitioner’s meetings.
Please note that if there is a police investigation ongoing regarding the case and you are called to be a witness as part of the proceedings, this may cause delays in contacting you and discussing your views.
Family members will be given the opportunity to contribute to the CSPR process by considering the services and support provided by various agencies and whether this was appropriate to their needs. Family members may also be asked to comment on issues associated with the publication of the final review. Which family members are contacted and at what point in the review will be determined on a case-by-case basis. It may not be possible to speak to some members due to concurrent criminal investigations or trials. Family members are not just parents / carers but will include extended family as appropriate.
It is recognised that contacts with family members should be handled sensitively and, where possible, via a professional already known to the family.