Best Practice

Information-sharing: Effective safeguarding practice

The Child Safeguarding Review Panel has identified timely and appropriate information-sharing as a key area of safeguarding that often needs to be improved. Elizabeth Rose offers best practice advice for schools

Information-sharing is one of the central tenets of effective safeguarding practice.

From encouraging staff to share concerns with the safeguarding lead, to responding to subject access requests, to knowing how to effectively share information at child protection conferences, safeguarding professionals are constantly making information-sharing decisions.

Safeguarding training makes it clear that everyone has a responsibility to share information, but too often we still see incidents where children have been significantly harmed or have died as a result of a failure in sharing information in a timely and effective way.

The Child Safeguarding Review Panel (CSRP) has just released its annual report for 2020, looking at learning from a range of reviews of cases where children have been seriously harmed or have died. The panel has identified “six key themes to address to make a difference”, with the intention that these themes will reduce the risk of serious harm and instances where children die as a result of abuse or neglect. One of these is, “sharing information in a timely and appropriate way”.

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