Case Reviews

Darlington Safeguarding Children Board (DSCB) is the key statutory mechanism for agreeing how the relevant organisations in Darlington will co-operate to safeguard and promote the welfare of children in its area, and for ensuring the effectiveness of what they do.  DSCB is pro-active to undertake a coordinating and monitoring role.

One of the most important functions of DSCB is to undertake reviews of serious cases and to advise the local authority and its Board partners on lessons to be learned.

The prime purpose of a Serious Case Review (SCR) is for agencies and individuals to learn lessons to improve the way in which they work both individually and collectively to safeguard and promote the welfare of children. The lessons learned should be disseminated effectively, and the recommendations should be implemented in a timely manner so that the changes required result, wherever possible, in children being protected from suffering or being likely to suffer harm in the future. It is essential, to maximise the quality of learning, that the child’s daily life experiences and an understanding of his or her welfare, wishes and feelings are at the centre of the SCR, irrespective of whether the child died or was seriously harmed.  This perspective should inform the scope and terms of reference of the SCR as well as the ways in which the information is presented at all stages of the process, including the conclusions and recommendations.  Reviews vary in their breadth and complexity but in all cases, where possible lessons should be acted upon quickly without necessarily waiting for the SCR to be completed.

Any professionals or agency may refer a case to DSCB if they believe that there are important lessons for intra and/or inter-agency working to be learned from the case.

The purpose of Case Reviews are to:

  • Establish whether there are lessons to be learned from the case about the way in which local professionals and organisations work individually and together to safeguard and promote the welfare of children.
  • Identify clearly what those lessons are both within and between agencies, how they will be acted on, and what is expected to change as a result.
  • Improve intra and inter-agency working to ensure better safeguards and promote the welfare of children.

Working Together 2015 [PDF Document]

Learning and Improvement Framework [Word Document]

Notifiable Incident Procedure and Practice Guidance [Word Document]

Notifiable Incident Form [Word Document]

NSPCC - Serious Case Review Quality Markers [External Link]

Lessons Learnt Research Digest

DSCB has produced a Lessons Learnt Research Digest bulletin to share messages from recently published serious case reviews and local lessons learnt.  The cases identify lessons to be learnt to improve learning and develop practice across multi-agencies to safeguard children and young people. 

Lesson Learnt Research Digest Issue 1

Lesson Learnt Research Digest Issue 2

Lesson Learnt Research Digest Issue 3

In addition the NSPCC keeps a list of all serious case reviews [External Link] which can be searched.  There is also a list of recently published serious case reviews [External Link]