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The importance of multi-agency working Essay

1.1. Explain the importance of multi-agency working and integrated working. When children are growing up they may require the use of different services, it is important for these services to work together so that they can help promote the child’s development and other life skills. When working with new children it is also important that you integrate them successfully by welcoming them and making sure that they know you’re accepting them in to your establishment. Working with other agencies could make sure that a blind child arrives at a new setting with the correct equipment to help them

1.2. Analyse how integrated working practices and multi-agency working in partnership deliver better outcomes for children and young people. There are many outcomes for children that will be positive if the professionals working with the children and their families can share and agree upon the way they might assess, plan and implement for the child. Both the children and their parents can be involved in any plans to ensure that a child can achieve their potential. If the outcomes for any child are to be positive it is important that all adults involved understand what information can be shared and the importance of confidentiality.

1.3. Describe the functions of external agencies with whom your work setting or service interacts I Have listed below the following practitioners you may have to work alongside when your are training/working in your setting: Education welfare officer – Education welfare officers (sometimes known as education social workers) work with schools, pupils, and families to resolve issues of poor attendance, closely related to this is the attendance officer.

Educational psychologist – An educational psychologist is concerned with helping children or young people who are experiencing problems within an education setting with the aim of enhancing learning.

Paediatric nurse – Paediatric nurses access, plan and provide care for children who are suffering from a wide variety of conditions including diseases, illnesses and cancer or who are recovering from surgery.

Nursery nurse – Nursery nurses are specialists who look after the social and educational development of children up to the age of 8 years old.

Teaching assistant – Teaching assistants (TAs) usually work with a teacher in their classroom, making sure pupils get the most out of lessons (e.g., by helping them find their way around a computer).

Higher level teaching assistant – HLTAs usually undertake more complex tasks and tend to work more independently than other classroom-based staff.

Play worker – Play workers plan, organise and supervise play and activities for children and young people inside and outside school.

Learning mentor – Learning Mentors work with school and college students and pupils to help them address barriers (and potential barriers) to learning through supportive one-to-one relationships and sometimes small group work.

1.1. Explain common barriers to integrated working and multi-agency working and how these can be overcome. Common barriers that can be found in integrated and multi-agency working are that of poor communication or a lack of communication, misunderstanding of situations, inconsistent or inaccurate record keeping and also not following policies or procedures. Barriers such as the few I have just named can stop people from effectively communicating with one another, which can then cause distress and also could lead to certain harmful situation. The ways in which a lack of communication can cause problems can be seen in the case of Victoria Climbie. As we know the systems that were involved such as social services and other agencies did not communicate with each other and so therefore tragically, Victoria died in a gruesome way due to the fact there was a lack of information being passed on from one agency to another? Good aspects that have come out of this terrible situation though include ECM (Every Child Matters) and also the Children Act 2004.

Another way a barrier can be made is if practitioners do not follow certain policies and procedures. A way that this can cause problems is that it can put children in harmful and dangerous situation. A way that this can be overcome is to have regular safety checks by other professionals in this sector to ensure that the setting is safe and that staff members are following procedures, this will help to make sure children are not victims and are not in any risk. Finally one last barrier that can be caused is a misunderstanding of information that has been passed on. Even though the fact that the information has been passed on is good, you must always make sure what is being passed on is a clear indication of the situation and that it has been received clearly too. The ways in which to overcome common barriers are to ensure you get the message across clearly! If you don’t then this is where you are going to have a problem, I imagine no teacher in your setting including yourself wants to come across another case like Victoria Climbe again. Don’t ignore any information you have been given that you feel is a concern, you have a duty of care so even the smallest issue should be dealt in the fastest was possible!

1.2. Explain how and why referrals are made between agencies. It’s important that referrals are made in order for the child to get the best possible outcomes and by practitioners doing observations and recording evidence this is made possible for the child to be referred to the correct professional, for example; a child with hearing difficulties may need to be referred to a support service for deaf children or children who have impaired hearing. Panels are usually made up of different agencies and these panels determine the access that is available between settings these panels aim to support the early identification of children’s needs, monitor children’s progress, ensure a child’s needs are identified and assessed quickly and referred to the appropriate setting, coordinate provision through the development of partnership with parents, settings and different agencies and support inclusion in mainstream early years settings.

It’s important to identify the need for additional support as early as possible without it the children will not get the help they need at the right time and this could have an effect on the child’s well-being. You must get the parents’ permission for any child to be referred and keep them well informed. Early intervention teams have been set up in England to work with children with additional needs from birth to the end of early years foundation stage. The early year’s intervention team will be part of the multi-agency panel enabling referrals to be made between settings. Early year’s intervention team promote inclusive practice, provides advice support and training in settings, supports transitions into schools, ensures that parents are fully aware of and involved in any referral process and they liaise with parents, careers and multi-agency professionals.

1.3. Explain the assessment frameworks that are used in own UK Home Nation. CAF is a shared assessment tool for use across all children’s services and all local areas in England. It aims to help early identification of need and promote co-ordinated service provision. The Common Assessment Framework (CAF) is a key component in the Every Child Matters: Change for Children programme. It is an important part of a strategy for helping children and young people to achieve the five priority outcomes of the Every Child Matters agenda.

The five outcomes are:

Being Healthy
Staying Safe
Enjoying and achieving
Making a positive contribution
Achieving Economic well-being

CAF is routinely used in respect of unborn children (from 24 weeks of gestation) up to and including young people of 18 years of age. If a child or young person has been looked after, that age limit is up to and including young people of 20 years of age. If the young person has a learning difficulty or disability, the age limit is up to and including Young people 24 years of age. Children, young people and families experience a range of needs at different times in their lives some of them also have additional needs which may relate to their development, education, health, social welfare or other areas. These needs will in many cases be cross-cutting and might be associated with:

•disruptive or anti-social behavior

•overt parental conflict or lack of parental support/boundaries •involvement in, or risk of, offending

•Poor attendance or exclusion from school

•Experiencing bullying

•Special educational needs


•Disengagement from education, training or employment post-16

•Poor nutrition or inadequate clothing

•ill health

•Substance misuse

•Anxiety or depression

•Experiencing domestic violence

•Housing issues

3.2. Demonstrate how to maintain secure recording and storage systems for information: electronic. In my setting we have all our children’s information stored on file in a secure computer, this computer is password protected and can only be accessed by the head mistress and the head receptionist, we can only look at these files If it absolutely necessary, the parents of the child can also see their information however they cannot see anyone else’s. We also have other confidential information that is on written paper; again these can only be accessed by the head mistress and head receptionist. I don’t have much to do with any recording with any of the children although I am aware of what you do. Any recording of any of our children will be wrote down and shared with the head of the school to confirm and sign any recording of the child that you need to know, it will then be processed onto the secure computer and only accessed when absolutely necessary.

3.3. Analyse the potential tension between maintaining confidentiality with the need to disclose information: where abuse of a child or young person is suspected The potential tension may be between you, other colleagues, the child/young person or their parents/carers. What would you do if you thought a child was being abused (this can be physical, emotional or sexual), there may be tension between you and the parents/carers by doing your duty and disclosing the information to senior staff or social services. Tension may arise because a young person may have trusted you with this information and you had to tell the appropriate professionals for them get support.

Make it clear though of the steps you would take to handle such information appropriately and why it is in your duty to do this as the child is priority and it mustn’t be left untreated if abuse is happening. Think along the same lines with the crime as well? Perhaps if another colleague was not carrying out their duty of care and committing a crime, Think along the whistleblowing policy and procedures but also how the tension would be within the setting if that colleague was seen as respectable. Try and think of all the possible scenarios of children, young adults or even their parents committing a crime, what impact would it have on the child. In that respect it must be taken seriously but even so there still be tension. As it is analysing though, cut it down into sections and explain both sides, the duty to maintain confidentiality (who do you tell? is it rumours or gossip?), suggest the support that can be given and also when and how it is appropriate to act and disclose such information.

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