Quality Assurance Framework



December 2017



1.1 Surrey Safeguarding Children Partnership (SSCP) was established in April 2006. One of the core functions of the SSCP is to monitor and evaluate the effectiveness of what is done by the Partnership’s partners individually and collectively to safeguard and promote the welfare of children and young people and to advise them on ways to improve. This framework sets out SSCP’s commitment to ensuring the effectiveness of the work to safeguard the children of Surrey and promote their wellbeing. 

1.2 According to the Working Together to Safeguard Children, 2015, in order to fulfil its functions SSCP should use data and, as a minimum, should:

  • Assess the effectiveness of the help being provided to children and families, including Early Help;
  • Assess whether SSCP partners are fulfilling their statutory obligations
  • Quality assure practice, including
  • Through joint audits of case files
  • Involving practitioners and;
  • Identifying lessons to be learned

This Quality Assurance framework encompasses the above in the Quality Assurance (QA) functions of the SSCP. 

    1. The SSCP Quality Assurance Framework is also underpinned by the SSCP Business Plan priorities, which are:
  • The effectiveness of Early Help for children, young people and families who do not meet the thresholds for statutory intervention and support by Children’s Social Care
  • The effectiveness of the current Child Protection processes in protecting those children identified as in need of protection and who are Looked After. To include consideration of ‘neglect’
  • The effectiveness of the response and impact of partners work to protect children and young people at risk of Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE).
  • The effectiveness and impact of the Surrey Services in reducing the incidences of Domestic Abuse and protecting children and young people from harm.        
  1. Elements of the Framework

2.1 Section 11 Audit

Section 11 audits are completed annually on a rotating two year cycle:

  • Year 1 – Statutory partners
  • Year 2 – Non Statutory partners – Early Years, Voluntary Sector, Third Sector and Faith Groups

Completed Section 11 Audits are subject to additional scrutiny. The purpose of the Scrutiny Panel is to assess the performance of the SSCP partner agencies against the Section 11 audit and identify areas that require improvement and would benefit from SSCP support. The scrutiny panel will provide a report to the SSCP on strategic themes and areas for actions.

The Section 11 Scrutiny Panel is accountable to the SSCP through the SSCP Quality Assurance and Evaluation Group. The group will report the findings to the Partnership and the SSCP Quality Assurance and Evaluation Group will follow up any actions and recommendations. 

2.2 Performance Data

Performance data to support the SSCP’s monitoring and scrutiny role. This includes a broad range of information drawn from various partner agencies to provide comprehensive performance reporting for partner agencies to work together to link performances across the board, share good practice and address any issues. 

2.3 Completion of multi-agency reviews led by Quality Assurance Officer

  • Reviews of cases to deliver a rigorous, objective analysis of what happened and why in order to learn lessons for the future
  • Focus groups and use of other appropriate methodologies to gather practitioners’ views and views of children and families on what’s working well, what needs to happen and what are we worried about.

2.4 Receipt of single agency audits

The SSCP Quality Assurance and Evaluation sub-group to receive, discuss and scrutinise single agency audits. Individual agencies and organisations are responsible for:

  • Their own quality assurance activity in relation to safeguarding
  • Supplying audit information and data as required by this framework
  • Identifying themes and issues in relation to multi agency working for the SSCP to address. 

2.6 Linking with other SSCP functions

Learning will be linked to the following areas:

  • Leaning from reviews carried out by Serious Case Review Group
  • Training
  • Policy & procedure

Learning from multi-agency activities and recommendation will be distributed across the partnership and appropriate action plan will be monitored by the SSCP Quality Assurance and Evaluation sub-group.

Consequently, it is important that the outcomes of the quality assurance activity inform the input of all other SSCP Sub Groups.  

  1. Governance and Accountability

SSCP has delegated responsibility for the strategic oversight & delivery of the Quality Assurance Framework to the SSCP Quality Assurance and Evaluation sub-group, including

  • Monitoring performance
  • Escalating areas of concern arising from QA activities
  • Building a good understanding of how safe children are in Surrey and where we need to improve
  • Using data effectively to inform our approaches, strategies and plans to improve performance and outcomes for children and their families
  • Providing evidence of the quality and impact of our work on the outcomes of children and their families in Surrey
  • Reflecting on practice; listening, learning and leading on improvements

The SSCP QA and Evaluation group is accountable to the SSCP Partnership through the Chair’s Executive Group reporting on two monthly basis. The Chair will provide regular progress reporting to the SSCP on the work of the group.