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Scottish Child Minding Association - Caithness & Sutherland

Adoption And Fostering

Highland Virtual Learning Community Highland Youth Voice Young Scot For Highland's Children
For Highland's Children 2005 - 2008


The Latest

2 November 08
Child Protection Training
GROUPS working with young people can benefit from child protection training being provided in Wick and Thurso in early December.

Sessions will take place on Thursday, December 4, in Wick Assembly Rooms (6.30pm to 9pm), and on Friday, December 5, in Thurso Youth Club (10 am to 12.30pm). The training will cover issues such as:

  • Basic child protection awareness.

  • Child protection policy requirements.

  • How to respond to the child.

  • Codes of conduct.

This training is delivered free and is open to any groups that work with young people, such as playgroups, youth clubs or sporting organisations. To book a place, contact Yvonne at Caithness Voluntary Group.

25 September 07
SCMA Caithness & Sutherland Autumn 2007 Newsletter

10 August 07
The Body Shop survey shows that teen attitudes are a time bomb to domestic violence
Research released today by The Body Shop, as part of their Stop Violence in the Home Campaign, reveals that the next generation will be as much at risk of domestic violence as today unless action is taken to educate young people on developing positive and respectful relationships. The research showed that 1 in 5 teens (21%) believe it's ok to tell a boyfriend or girlfriend what to do, with the figure rising to more than one in four (27%) in young men. A further 1 in 10 teens think saying sorry makes it ok after they've hurt or forced a partner to do something. A worrying statistic considering that on average, a woman will be assaulted by her partner or ex-partner 35 times before reporting it to the police...... Women's Aid run a website for children and young people, http://www.thehideout.org.uk/ which aims to support and inform about domestic violence.
Links For Help
Caithness & Sutherland Womens Aid Outreach Service  
Highland Domestic Abuse Forum
Rape and Abuse Line  
Highland Council Domestic Abuse Help Information   
Domestic Abuse Strategy

Getting It Right For Every Child

June 06
For Highland's Children - Bulletin 10

28 May 06
For Highlands Children - Bulletin 9
with information on
o Follow-up Child Protection Inspection
o Getting Inverness Right for Every Child o Parenting Matters
o Health For All Children and GIRFEC
o Additional Support for Learning
o Delivering a Health Future:
national consultation

22 May 06
"Getting It Right for Every Child" in Highland
Highland's Joint Committee on Children and Young People has agreed that Highland should be a pathfinding authority for the national implementation of "Getting it Right for Every Child". This is a major programme, and is likely to have a significant impact on all of Highland's children - and subsequently on all of Scotland's children. Implementation will commence first in the Inverness Area.

"Getting it Right for Every Child" involves action to implement the national review of the Children's Hearings System, to achieve more joined-up assessment, planning and review processes for children, who would get the right service at the right time, packaged for their particular needs.

The success measures will include:

  • Children get the help they need when they need it: action improves their situation, supports the achievement of good outcomes and reduces risk.

  • More time is spent by workers in direct work with children and families, and less in bureaucratic processes.

  • Children and families knowing about the services available to them, having confidence in them; believing their needs are being address and their views heard.

  • Communities being more confident about the responsibilities of services and how community concerns are being dealt with

  • Better information sharing, supported by new electronic systems.

This programme will build on the good practices in Highland that support integrated children's services, as well as best practice from the rest of Scotland. Parents and children will be consulted at every stage.

Bill Alexander, Head of Children's Services in Highland, said: "An integrated assessment framework, record and plan will be established. This is not a national database. Instead, details of children held on existing systems (in heath, education, social work, and police) will be accessed as required for key information about a child and where there are concerns that multi-agency action is needed to address these concerns. The pathfinder is more about practice change. It is about focusing on the child's needs, developing the single assessment, record and plan - identifying training needs and reducing bureaucracy.

"Information will be shared as far as possible on the basis of consent by children and families, but where there are concerns about a child being at risk, relevant information can be disclosed in order to ensure that the child can be protected."

14 March 06
A senior Highland Councillor highlighted the Council's commitment to meeting the aspirations of parents, who want day care alongside pre-school education provided in the one centre. Councillor Margaret Davidson, Chairman of the Highland Joint Committee on Children and Young People, told Committee members that the Council should set a target of August 2008 to implement a strategy that would serve the Highlands well for years to come.

11 February 06
Improving Outcomes for Children and Young People
This important paper was launched by the Scottish Executive this week.  "By 2007 every school in Scotland will participate in delivering Integrated Children's Services"

This announcement received less publicity than the announcements about Social Work, but is also very welcome, and reflects the lobbying that Highland Council has been involved in over recent years. The Executive have acknowledged that the Integrated Community School agenda is now effectively one and the same as Integrated Children's Services. They have therefore published a policy statement which confirms that:
"A Partnership for a Better Scotland made the commitment that by 2007 every school in Scotland would be an Integrated Community School. In effect the integrated children's services initiative has developed and the commitment has been overtaken by the wider integration agenda. It no longer makes sense to think of schools separately from other agencies. We would now say that by 2007 every school in Scotland will participate in delivering Integrated Children's Services"

This policy shifts fits closely with the approach in Highland, and the continued implementation via Getting It Right For Every Child (GIRFEC). The Executive's policy statement signposts relevant guidance, self-evaluation and inspection frameworks promoting the development of an integrated approach, and highlights the importance of:
* ownership of the shared vision for children and young people
* leadership at authority and school level
* integration in neighbourhood and whole school approaches in
   addition to support for individuals
* an appropriately skilled workforce

Go to Improving Outcomes At Scottish Executive Web Site for the full text of the announcement.

10 January 05

Members of The Highland Council’s Caithness Area Committee met on Monday with officials and voluntary sector partners to look at the vision for early years services in the County.

They considered the local concerns from some communities about the possible loss of local pre-school provision. Against a backdrop of falling school rolls, but with some good news about likely housing developments in a number of villages, they examined the mapping exercises that have been completed to date.

Elected members recognised the need to ensure appropriate provision of a sustainable and quality standard for children in Caithness, that parents could have confidence in, into the future. This included finding means to address challenges posed by staff recruitment, new regulatory demands and management support for voluntary sector groups. It was recognised that there is some duplication of provision, and the possibility for consolidation - with local support.

Elected members asked Area Education manager, Graham Nichols, to provide a detailed report to their February Area Committee, and to conduct further local consultation prior to nursery enrolment in March.

8 December 05
For Highland,s Children
A new web site setting out highland information and policies on all aspects of children's services and child protection.  Contact details, and links to other web sites.

Child Minders In Caithness

For Highland's Children - A Pdf doc
Review Of Highland's Children
- A Pdf doc
Making Services Better for Scotland's Children - A Pdf Doc

Children In The Highlands Information Point (CHIP)

Caithness Area Children’s Services Forum
“For Children & Families in the Caithness Area”

Development Plan 2004 - 2006

2 July 05
For Highland's Children - Bulletin 7

· Joint Committee Seminar – 19 August: “Getting it right for every
· Child Protection Inspection Report · For Highland’s Children 2
· Integrated Assessment Framework · Integrated children’s services website
Caithness Area Childrens Services Forum news starts at page 3, and includes:

17 June 05
A report on the most far-reaching examination of child protection services in a Scottish local authority area concludes that children and young people in Highland are well protected. Highland was chosen to pilot the inspection by HMIE in recognition of the progress being made in integrating children’s services and agencies and members of the Highland Child Protection Committee are pleased with the findings of the report, published today (Friday 17 June 2005).  The inter-agency Highland Child Protection Committee will incorporate recommendations from the report into an action plan and agree timescales to further improve child protection services across the Highlands.

30 March 05
Scottish Executive’s Children, Young People and Social Care Group’s E:zine.
If you and your organisation provide services and support to, or work, with children, young people and their families, then we think you will find this e:zine useful.

2 November 04
Read Together
A web site to help you get the best out of reading with your child.
If you want more educational web sites head for our Educational Links section

The Highland Council is appealing to people in the Highlands to consider adopting a child.     Their call coincides with the launch of National Adoption Week, a nationwide campaign organised by the British Agencies for Adoption and Fostering, aimed at finding families for children waiting to be adopted.  Over 3,000 children in the U.K. are waiting to be adopted and many older children in the Highlands wait too long to find permanent and loving homes due to a shortage of people coming forward.......

Children's Consultation Paper - Every Child Matters

Young Carers
offering a helpline, advice and advocacy for any young person looking after a relative or neighbour
FREE information packs for young carers

Health Promoting Schools
Children First
Children's Health site from NHS UK in several languages and aimed at children themselves
Children 1st

Parentline Scotland

Parenting Links

Help for parents of children with Additional Support Needs (ASN) helpline and website,

H M Inspectors Of Education

Social Work Services - Highland Council

Scottish Children Statistics Gateway

Research and Economic Unit - Children  - Scottish Executive

Children in Scotland
Membership organisation representing the interests of children and young people in Scotland on behalf of its members.
Princes House, 5 Shandwick Place, Edinburgh EH2 4RG

Contact a Family
National organisation providing information on Specific Conditions, Rare Disorders and UK Family Support Groups.
209-211 City Road, London EC1V 1JN
Helpline 0808 808 3555

Family Fund
Provides grants and information related to the care of disabled or seriously ill children under the age of 16 in the UK.
Family Fund, PO Box 50, York Y01 9ZX
Tel 0845 130 4542
(Application forms also available from CHIP+)

Positive Parenting
Provides support and training for parents
Scottish Development Manager, 19 Bellfield Road, North Kessock Inverness IV1 3XU
01463 731 508

More Organisation Links At CHIP

Getting It Right For Every Child - Scot Exec 2005

International Center for Missing and Exploited Children

Children' Section On Caithness.org
This section is being constructed to draw together the many stands of information on the web site and elsewhere that may be of interest to children, parents, guardians or anyone running voluntary groups.  If you have information that would be useful please get in touch so that we can add another contact etc.....

Nursery & Play Group Action Groups
Several groups were set up to fight any downgrading of support from highland council to nurseries and groups coming under Highland Pre School Services
Keiss Action Group
Thrumster Action Group
Dunnet Play Group
14 March 06
Although rural groups were given an assurance that their service was safe for another year town groups felt they had not had fair hearing or a chance for consultation when the Highland council proposed mergers of 3 and 4 year old provision.  The Caithness places then began to lobby and successfully had decisions put back until a consultation could be held in September 2006 as agreed by convenor David Flear.  Since then Margaret Davidson chair of housing and Social Work has set new target date in 2008 for any new strategy to alter arrangements. Ffurther meetings are to be held later in 2006.

10 November 05
Have You a Concern About Children's Services in Caithness?

Bill Fernie is the Children's Champion For Caithness in addition to being the Caithness area chairman of Housing and Social Work committee.  Bill attends the Joint Committee for Children and Young People in his role as Children's Champion for Caithness and this is really a watching brief on children's matters that might affect children, young people and their families in Caithness.  The Caithness area convenor David Flear also attends as a member of the committee.  Bill and David would be interested to hear of any concerns parents or young people have about services affecting them in Caithness.  For example Bill and David have input to the debates on nursery provision in the review that has led to the setting up of groups in Caithness by concerned parents -
Nursery Action Groups
» Keiss Action Group

» Thrumster Action Group
» Dunnet Play Group

Bill Fernie is the councillor for Wick West
David Flear is the councillor for Caithness Central
If you have problem about services affecting children or young people you can contact either one of the above or your local Caithness councillor  (Full List)
For other parts of Highland see Here

Children In The Highlands Education & Support Services
CHESS Events
Will take the format of open surgeries to ask specific questions in connection with children with additional support needs.  These can be in relation to  advice, information, support, training and awareness-raising.
All events to be from 11.30am - 2.30pm
Wick Assembly Rooms
- Wednesday 29th October 2003


Twin's Group - Thurso
Twins Group - Wick

Home Start
Save the Children Caithness Branch

Caithness Community Transport (Dial A Ride)
Available to anyone with a disability in Caithness

Play Groups & Nurseries In Caithness
Local Schools also for nursery or pre school groups


CHAS - Children's Hospice Association Scotland

CHIP - Children In the Highlands Information Point
CHIP is an information service set up specifically to answer any questions you may have about services available to families in the Highlands who have a child with special needs.
See Also CHIP Links of other Highland groups and contacts for specific conditions

Childcare Link

Out of School Care Federation  
OOSC Fed  covers of school clubs throughout the Highlands & Islands

Children In Scotland
The national agency for voluntary, statutory and professional organisations and individuals working with children and their families in Scotland.

Child Protection
Child Protection Policies - Highland Council

Area Education Managers
Involved in managing the education provision offered by primary and secondary schools
Caithness Area Office
Rhind House, Wick
Tel: 01955 602362
Sutherland Area Office
Tel: 01408 623900

Educational Psychologists
Service works with children, young people and their families. It offers advice on child development and education and gives support when difficulties arise. They can suggest ways to prevent, manage or resolve these difficulties. Referrals come from parents, young people themselves, schools, medical services, social work department and the reporter to the children’s panel.
Caithness Psychological Services
Education Offices
Rhind House Wick
Tel: 01955 602362
Sutherland Psychological Service Area Education Office
Tel: 01463 621382
Other Areas In Highland

Social Work Services in Caithness
Thurso Area Office
High Street
Tel 01847 893835

Wick Area Office
High Street
Tel 01955 605040

Children's Centre, 
Northcote Street
Tel 01955 604279

Early Years
A resource for all involved in the care and education of children
0 - 8 years
Highland Pre School Service
Parent Zone From NGFL
offers a selection of information for parents, guardians, carers and others responsible for school age children.
Children In The Highlands Education & Support Services
Provides Additional Support Needs advice, information, and support for Parents, Professionals and Children. Wherever you are in the Highlands. 

Crackdown on unsuitable adults
on the creation and operation of a national list of people who are unsuitable to work with children was published today.  

One Parent Families Scotland

Comhairle Nan Sgoiltean Araich  
CNSA has information on learning opportunities in Gaelic, for people of all ages throughout Scotland.

Want To Become A Registered Child Minder
 or Playworker?

Registering to become a childminder or playworker
Organisation: Care Commission
Location: Unit 4 39 - 41 Harbour Road, INVERNESS
Details: The Care Commission are the regulatopry body for the registereing and inspection of Childminders, Playgroups, Full Day Care Nurseries for Scotland.
For more information contact -
Care Commission
Unit 4
39-41 Harbour Road
Contact: Care Commission Tel 01463 227630

Scottish Childminding Association
3 Gordon Terrace, Crown INVERNESS
The Scottish Childminding Association exists to promote childminding as a quality child care service. The Association also offer a complete range of Insurance Services, Training opportunities and promotion of local groups for mutual support
The office in Inverness covers the Highlands
Tel: 01463 715545   Web Site

Parent's Guide to Special Educational Needs
The Scottish Executive Education Department with Children in Scotland have prepared a free guide practical information to parents with children with special educational needs within the Education system.
For more information or the guide contact
Scottish Executive Education Department
Princes House 5 Shandwick Place, Edinburgh
Children in Scotland Tel: 0131-222-2400

Homework Help
Kids Links

Parenting Links