About the Northumberland Safeguarding Children Board

Find out more about how you can help to safeguard children and the Northumberland local safeguarding children board (LSCB).

This page contains details of the Northumberland safeguarding children board.

The Children Act 2004 requires every local authority to establish a local safeguarding children board (LSCB).

Chapter three of Working Together 2015 sets out the arrangements for each local safeguarding children board.

To understand what the Northumberland Safeguarding Children Board (NSCB) does and how you can be involved in our work please read our Practitioners Guide to NSCB.
The LSCB’s role is to coordinate local work to safeguard and promote the welfare of children and ensure the effectiveness of the member organisations’ work, individually and together.

The objectives of the LSCB are to:
  • Develop and agree policies and procedures for safeguarding and promoting children’s welfare, consistent with Working Together To Safeguard Children (2015), including:
    1. action to be taken where there are concerns about a child’s welfare, including thresholds for intervention
    2. training of those working with children or in services affecting the children’s welfare
    3. recruitment and supervision of people working with children
    4. investigating allegations
    5. welfare of privately fostered children
    6. co-operation with neighbouring children’s social care services
  • Participate in planning services for children in the area
  • Communicate the need to safeguard and promote children’s welfare
  • Develop procedures to ensure a co-ordinated response to unexpected child deaths
  • Monitor the effectiveness of procedures to safeguard and promote children’s welfare
  • Undertake appropriate serious case reviews and ensure lessons are acted upon
  • Collect and analyse information about child deaths
There is a requirement for the LSCB to ensure appropriate links exist with secure settings and to be able to scrutinise the use of restraint, incidences and injuries.
Working Together to Safeguard Children (2015) states the LSCB’s role includes the safeguarding and promoting of the welfare of children in three broad areas:
  1. Activities affecting all children - aiming to identify and prevent maltreatment or impairment and ensuring children grow up in with safe and effective care.
  2. Work targeting particular groups - developing thresholds for working with families where the child comes within the definition of children in need but isn’t suffering or likely to suffer significant harm. They safeguard the welfare of children potentially more vulnerable than others, perhaps because they are disabled, living away from home or in custody.
  3. Work to protect children who are suffering or likely to suffer significant harm, including children who are:
  • abused and neglected within families, including those affected by domestic violence, substance misuse or mental ill health
  • abused outside of the family by adults
  • abused or neglected by professional carers where children are cared for away from home
  • abused by other children
  • sexually exploited
  • committing abuse
  • victims of crime
Any interventions should aim to help children to achieve all five Department for Education outcomes to have optimum life chances. The LSCB should check if this is the case in their evaluations.
The LSCB is not accountable for the work of individuals and organisations safeguarding children.

Each board partner retains its own existing accountability guidelines for safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children.

The LSCB does not have the power to direct other organisations.
Safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children should be seen in a wider context and the LSCB’s work should reflect and contribute to the wider goals of improving the wellbeing of all children. The LSCB complements and is represented on the Children’s Trust Board, although the two bodies should be chaired by different people.
Organisations designate named people as their LSCB member so there is a consistency and continuity in membership.

Members will be those with a strategic role in relation to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children.

They should be able to:
  • speak for their organisation with authority
  • commit their organisation on policy and practice matters
  • hold their organisation to account
Members of the LSCB (see chapter 3 of Working Together) must include:
  • children’s social care services
  • adult social care services
  • strategic health authority and primary care trusts
  • NHS trusts and NHS foundation trusts
  • police
  • probation
  • youth offending team
  • connections
  • any secure training centre
  • any prison which ordinarily detains children
  • two representatives of the local community (their role is described in paragraph 10 of Working Together)
Schools should also be represented, which means taking steps to ensure the following are represented:
  • the maintained school’s governing body
  • the proprietor of a non-maintained special school
  • the proprietor of a city technology college, a city college for the technology of the arts or an academy
  • the governing body of a further education institution
Independent schools should also be included as appropriate (paragraph 5 of Working Together).

Other members may include:
  • faith groups
  • state and independent schools
  • further education colleges
  • children’s centres
  • GPs
  • independent healthcare organisations
  • voluntary and community sector organisations
  • armed forces
  • immigration services
The LSCB chair should be independent of local agencies.

The LSCB will make strategic links with other organisations and individuals, inviting them to join the board or contribute in some other way. These include:
  • substance misuse services
  • local MAPPA
  • dental health services
  • Crown Prosecution Service
  • coroner
The LSCB needs to draw on the work of key national organisations and liaise with them where necessary.
Each LSCB has a supporting structure. Terms of reference for each of the boards’ sub-groups are available through the LSCB websites.
The NSCB meet six times per year. Meeting dates are set out as follows:

  • 22 January
  • 14 March
  • 16 May
  • 25 July
  • 24 September
  • 21 November
The minutes of the Northumberland Safeguarding Children Board (NSCB) meetings are recorded and scrutinised by the multi-agency representative members of the NSCB. The NSCB intend to provide information about local child protection issues, highlighting any endorsed decisions and objectives.

If you require further information about the NSCB minutes, or if you have any other queries, please email us: nscb@northumberland.gov.uk

Click on the links below to view our Board meeting minutes:

NSCB meeting minutes 2016
NSCB meeting minute​s 2017
NSCB meeting minute​s 2018 NSCB meeting minute​s 2019

Business plan 2018-19

This plan builds on the work of the Board undertaken since its inception in 2006; you can find a detailed account of the progress and learning achieved in the 2016-17 Annual Report (see below).

Unusually, this plan only covers a one-year period, due to the NSCB being abolished in the Children and Social Work Act 2017 and Working Together 2018. However, it is important there is continuity and a planned transition into the new safeguarding arrangements, and the NSCB will continue to be governed using the 2015 statutory guidance.

Annual report 2017-2018

The NSCB 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.

Serious Case Reviews

Set out below are the Serious Case Review (SCR) Reports from Northumberland published during the last 12 months.
SCRs are a statutory process and are governed by Chapter 4 of Working Together to Safeguard Children (2015). They are part of the reviewing and investigative function of LSCBs, set out in Regulation 5 of the Local Safeguarding Children Boards Regulations 2006.  
Multi-Agency Deep Dive Reviews (MADDRs)

MADDRs are reviews of cases falling below the SCR 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 Northumberland Safeguarding Children Board 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.
Robin Harper-Coulson
Safeguarding Board Business Manager
County Hall
NE61 2EF

Email: robin.harper-coulson@northumberland.gov.uk
Tel: 01670 624037