Safeguarding Children Partnership arrangements

Find out more about how you can help to safeguard children.

From April 2022 the Northumberland Strategic Safeguarding Partnership (NSSP) integrated with the Northumberland Safeguarding Adults Board (SAB), which was formally a joint arrangement with North Tyneside SAB, to form: The Northumberland Children and Adults Safeguarding Partnership (NCASP)

The purpose of the Northumberland Children and Adults Safeguarding Partnership (NCASP) is to support the Statutory Safeguarding Partners and Relevant Agencies to fulfil their responsibilities for safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and adult with needs for care in support, and to ensure the effectiveness of safeguarding practice in Northumberland.   NCASP provides effective and informed leadership to the local safeguarding system and delivers a shared responsibility for the safeguarding of children, young people and adults at risk in Northumberland. The Partnership also seeks to engage with children, young people, adults and their families to inform its work. Central to the role of NCASP is to provide ‘added value’ to local safeguarding arrangements. Click here for Northumberland Children and Adults Safeguarding Partnership information.
The Northumberland Safeguarding Children’s Board (NSCB) was abolished in the Children and Social Work Act 2017 and Working Together 2018. The latter shaped new Multi-Agency Safeguarding Arrangements and the three accountable safeguarding partners in Northumberland (Northumberland County Council, Northumberland Clinical Commissioning Group and Northumbria Police) formed the Northumberland Strategic Safeguarding Partnership (NSSP). These arrangements remained in place until 1 April 2022, when the Children and Adult Safeguarding arrangements amalgamated to form NCASP.
Please see below for details of NSSP information and reports:
Safeguarding children’s board plans and reports
Business Plan 2018-20
This plan builds on the work of the Partnership undertaken since its inception in 2006; you can find a detailed account of the progress and learning achieved in the 2018-19 Annual Report (see below).
Unusually, this plan only covers a one-year period, due to the Northumberland Safeguarding Children's Board (NSCB) being abolished in the Children and Social Work Act 2017 and Working Together 2018.
Annual Report 2020-2021
The NSSP has a statutory duty to prepare and publish an Annual Report which analyses and assesses how our partners safeguard vulnerable children and young people. This document sets out progress and learning over the past year and also serves as a review of the previous priorities.
Please also see our version for children and young people.
Minutes of meetings
The minutes of the meetings are scrutinised by the multi-agency representative members. Please see below, minutes from the Northumberland Safeguarding Children's Committee (NSCC) and also the NSCB:

NSCC meeting minute​s 2022 NSCC meeting minute​s 2021 NSCC meeting minute​s 2020 NSCB meeting minute​s 2019 NSCB meeting minute​s 2018 NSCB meeting minute​s 2017 NSCB meeting minutes 2016
Child Safeguarding Practice Reviews
A Child Safeguarding Practice Review (previously known as a Serious Case Review (SCR)) is undertaken when a child dies or the child has been seriously harmed and there is cause for concern as to the way organisations worked together. The purpose of a child safeguarding practice review is for agencies and individuals to learn lessons that improve the way in which they work, both individually and collectively, to safeguard and promote the welfare of children.
The trigger for this is a notifiable incident –
There is a Duty on local authorities to notify incidents to the Child Safeguarding Practice Review Panel (this is a National Panel). Working Together 2018 (chapter 4) states that where a local authority in England knows or suspects that a child has been abused or neglected, the local authority must notify the Child Safeguarding Practice Review Panel if the child dies or is seriously harmed in the local authority’s area, or while normally resident in the local authority’s area, the child dies or is seriously harmed outside England.
Initially a rapid review will be undertaken in order to ascertain whether a local child safeguarding practice review is appropriate, or whether the case may raise issues which are complex or of national importance such that a national review may be appropriate.
The Northumberland Strategic Safeguarding Partnership (NSSP) has a sub-committee which oversees and quality assures all the child safeguarding practice reviews undertaken by the Partnership, and provides advice on whether the criteria for conducting a review have been met. Any professional or agency may refer a case for consideration using the Child Safeguarding Practice Review Referral Form.
Upon completion of a Child Safeguarding Practice Review, there is an expectation that the final report is published in full and will be available on the website for a minimum of 12 months. The report will include:
  • a summary of any recommended improvements to be made by persons in the area to safeguard and promote the welfare of children;
  • an analysis of any systemic or underlying reasons why actions were taken or not in respect of matters covered by the report.
Any recommendations will be clear on what is required of relevant agencies and others collectively and individually, and by when, and focused on improving outcomes for children. Additional information and guidance in relation to Child Safeguarding Practice Reviews can be found in the statutory guidance Working Together to Safeguard Children 2018.
In addition to Child Safeguarding Practice Reviews, the Northumberland Safeguarding Children Committee (NSCC) will also undertake Multi-Agency Case Reviews / Partnership Reviews which do not meet the criteria for a Child Safeguarding Practice Review, but are considered to offer good opportunities to identify lessons for learning and ways in which multi-agency practice to safeguard children and young people can be improved locally.

Multi-Agency Deep Dive Reviews (MADDRs)

MADDRs are reviews of cases falling below the Child Safeguarding Practice Review threshold. Cases can involve incidents where a child has been harmed and there are concerns about multi-agency practice, or involve incidents where multi-agency practice is considered to be good (after a child has been harmed or where a child has been prevented from being harmed) and agencies seek to identify the characteristics and enablers of that good multi-agency practice.

Case Reviews

Case reviews provide a valuable tool for learning and for improving practice and policy in relation to safeguarding children. One of the ways in which the NSSP will share information about case reviews is through the publication of leaflets that highlight lessons learned and set out implications for practice from key local, regional and national case reviews. The leaflets below have been produced by the serious case review panel to facilitate learning. It is recommended that they are discussed in team meetings and supervisions, where appropriate, to ensure they are embedded in front line practice.  Regional National While every effort has been made to protect the confidentiality of individuals involved in these cases, we ask that persons accessing these documents show due respect to the families concerned when reading and sharing content.

Joint targeted area inspection of the multi-agency response to child exploitation in Northumberland

2 August 2019

An inspection of the multi-agency response to child exploitation in Northumberland has praised the strong commitment demonstrated by all agencies to working together to safeguard children.
Inspectors from Ofsted, the Care Quality Commission (CQC), Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Constabulary and Fire & Rescue Services (HMICFRS), and Her Majesty’s Inspectorate of Probation (HMIP) visited the county in June to assess how council, police, health, probation and youth offending services are working together to identify, support and protect vulnerable children and young people.
In a report published this week, inspectors highlighted:
Children are involved in and influencing their own plans and the development of services, with inspectors commenting that children’s voices are well represented in records and their health records are enhanced using their actual words.
Co-location of agencies in the multi-agency safeguarding hub (MASH) was facilitating timely information-sharing and consideration of the needs of the whole family.
Inspectors also praised proactive work being undertaken to reduce risk, prevent harm, and improve understanding of child sexual and child criminal exploitation.
Paula Mead, Independent chair of Northumberland safeguarding children board said:
“The responsibility of safeguarding children and young people does not rest with a single agency, and this report highlights the strong commitment demonstrated by all the Northumberland safeguarding agencies to working together to safeguard children.
“It is particularly pleasing that inspectors found that children are being listened to, and their words are being recorded and acted upon. It is right that children’s views and feelings should be at the heart of what we are all doing.
“The report also notes where further work is needed, and a number of these actions have already been completed. Going forward we will build on those recommendations to continue to make further improvements to keep children and young people safe.” 
If you have any enquiries relating to the Safeguarding Children’s Board arrangements please contact:

Karen Wright – Senior Manager, Safeguarding Adults