Neglect Practitioner Portal – Tools and interventions

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These tools and interventions are for use by any professional working with families and many can be used as soon as concerns emerge.

If you need guidance or support in using any of these tools, please contact the Locality Community Support Service.

The Oxfordshire Safeguarding Board Child Development Checklist

Also known as the neglect checklist or neglect toolkit, this assists early identification of neglect, informs decision making, supports assessments and planning and  can also be used to track improvements, deterioration or drift. It should be used alongside, not instead of, whole family assessments such as the Early Help Assessment or Children’s Social Care Initial Assessment.

Multi-agency Chronology

Allows information to be systematically shared and merged across agencies.  Provides a quick view of the history of a family, gives crucial information about a child’s life experience, and helps identify patterns of risks and positives within a family.

No names consultation, LCSS and MASH referral

Reflective professional discussion is a very important tool where neglect is concerned. You can call the LCSS for a no names consultation or to discuss a concern about a family. If you are in a school or other setting you can also discuss concerns with your LCSS link worker.

For immediate safeguarding concern you should always contact the MASH. You can report online or you can call 0345 050 7666.  Have details ready as you will need to answer questions about the case before the query goes to the MASH.

Case mapping tools

Case Mapping is a suite of tools within the Signs of Safety/Wellbeing Approach to case management, which has its roots in the work of Dr Andrew Turnell and Steve Edwards. They are particularly useful for:

  • Helping stuck/complex cases to move forward
  • Improving risk and needs assessment
  • Making sense of chaotic situations

‘Completing a case mapping is, in the end, simply a process of creating a map of the circumstances surrounding a vulnerable child. As with all maps, the Signs of Safety map needs always to be seen as a mechanism to arrive at a destination.’  (Dr Andrew Turnell and Terry Murphy).

Please use all the tools below in conjunction with the Oxfordshire Signs of Safety / Wellbeing Guidance.

  • Oxfordshire Signs of Safety Plan
    Undertaken jointly between the family and professionals, this maps out risk, harm, danger, safety and strengths to: support planning; builds on strengths; address concerns; and help parents be clear about what is expected of them.
  • 3 houses Discussion Tool
    The Three Houses tool asks the three key assessment questions of the Signs of Safety framework in a child-friendly way. This allows the child’s views to be captured to inform the planning process
  • Fairy and Wizard Discussion Tool Guide and Wizard and Fairy templates
    Wizard and Fairy allow you to explore the three key assessment questions using different pictures and a different approach.
  • Safety House Template and Guide
    The Safety House explores five key elements about home life and supports safety planning in a clear and accessible way.
  • Lived Experience of the Child (clocks and suns)
    The Clocks and Suns Tool allows for close focus on the lived experience of the child by working through hours of the day or days of the week.

Family Star Plus

Part of the Outcomes Star suite, which measures and supports progress for service users towards self-reliance or other goals, the Family Star Plus is suitable for use with families with multiple or complex needs, or with children over 5 years old and covers ten areas of parenting essential to enabling children to thrive. It is widely used by organisations in Oxfordshire.

Parenting Daily Hassles

Parenting support services and tools are available from your local Children & Family Centre, and online via the Multiagency Practitioner Toolkit. The Parenting Daily Hassles Scale is a useful one-page scale tool looking at difficulties within a family.

Toxic Trio (Domestic Abuse, Mental Health and Substance Misuse)

Domestic Abuse, Mental Health and Substance Misuse are often contributory factors in neglect cases. Tools to support these themes are available on this website, and you can find additional tools online via the Multiagency Practitioner Toolkit.

Solutions-Focussed Practice

This toolkit from the NSPCC provides inspiration for worksheets and activities to use, adapt or devise for the children and young people you work with, all from a solutions-focussed practice perspective.

Graded Care profile

The Graded Care Profile is a tool for assessment, planning intervention and review, where there are concerns about the standards of care. It gives an objective measure of the care of the child across all areas of need, showing strengths and weaknesses. Improvement and/or deterioration can be tracked across the period of intervention. It allows professionals to target work as it highlights areas in which the child’s needs are, and are not, being met. It may also help parents/carers who may have experienced neglect to understand why such behaviours are harmful.

In order to use the Graded Care profile, you must undertake specialist training. This training is available on the OSCB Training Portal.

Think Family Approach

This document outlines what is meant by a Think Family or Whole Family approach and why this matters.  It highlights the importance of considering all family members needs and strengths when undertaking assessments or developing plans, identifies six key issues in family work and signposts additional support such as the resource budget and the troubled families employment advisers.

The Oxfordshire Threshold of Needs

This guidance will support you to understand level of need and provide appropriate support. It will identify strengths, needs and risks for the whole family, build on strengths, identify multiple and cumulative risk factors, suggest actions to manage difficulties and risks, clarify circumstances in which children’s services will assist and safeguard children, and provide a shared and common language.

The Early Help Assessment and other Team Around the Family Tools

The Early Help Assessment (EHA) is a tool to identify problems when they first emerge. It should be undertaken with the family where:

  • There are concerns about progress or wellbeing
  • Needs are unclear and/ or not being met
  • Needs are broader than a single service can address

A Team Around the Family (TAF) meeting takes place when an EHA identifies the need for a multi-agency response. It provides the opportunity for the family and involved professionals to discuss how additional needs can be met and to regularly review progress

Information Sharing

Where information needs to be shared about a case, it is important to act quickly. Know your procedures so that this can happen in a timely and safe fashion. This information sharing poster includes a common-sense flow-chart and check-list for making sure you are sharing information safely.

Understanding and Working with Neglect Training Video

The 16.5 minute training video made in Oxfordshire looks at working with neglect, including specific risks for adolescents and those with disabilities. If you need to show this video offline, we can provide copies – contact

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