CEOP

Adolescence now lasts from 10 to 24, scientists say (19/01/2018)

Adolescence now lasts from the ages of 10 to 24, although it used to be thought to end at 19, scientists say. Young people continuing their education for longer, as well as delayed marriage and parenthood, has pushed back popular perceptions of when adulthood begins. And changing the definition is vital to ensure laws and government policy stay appropriate, they say in the Lancet Child & Adolescent Health journal. But another expert warns doing so risks "further infantilising young people".

Full story: BBC

What's in a meme? (19/01/2018)

Critical thinking is a term we bandy around quite often in relation to education and young people. Children need to be critical thinkers in this digital age of “fake news” and dubious content, but education only goes so far. We can talk about critical thinking until we’re blue in the face at school, if after all that they open Instagram to find five of the most famous celebs they follow have shared the same story, it would take an incredibly astute person to question it.

Full story: SWGFL

Guardian

Sport protects mental health of children who experience trauma (18/01/2018)

Taking part in sport protects children who are abused or neglected from developing mental health problems in later life, according to a major public health study. People who had adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) but regularly played sports as children were less likely to have a mental illness as an adult, the study found. People who had traumatic childhoods were also more likely to be mentally healthy if they took part in sport as adults. The study confirmed a strong link between ACEs, which include sexual and physical abuse, parental separation and living with domestic violence, and mental illness as an adult.

Full story: Guardian

Guardian

Asda and Aldi ban sale of energy drinks to under 16s (18/01/2018)

Asda and Aldi have joined Waitrose in banning the sale of high-caffeine energy drinks to children under 16. Asda is the first of the “big four” supermarkets to announce an age restriction, which will apply to 84 products from 5 March. From this date customers wishing to buy these products, either in store or online, will need to be willing to show appropriate identification.

Full story: Guardian

Guardian

Child victims let down by lack of help in court, says UK watchdog (17/01/2018)

Hundreds of the most vulnerable victims of crime are being prevented from testifying against their attackers because of a shortage of experts to help them give evidence, the victims’ commissioner warns in a report on Wednesday. Helen Newlove is calling for extra support and funding for registered intermediaries (RIs) who give a voice in court to those, such as the very young or adults with learning difficulties, who have problems communicating.

Full story: Guardian

Community Care

Child protection with adolescents: does the system work? (17/01/2018)

Working with adolescents is an area of practice which I thoroughly enjoy but where I can feel constrained. I believe there is a different dynamic to working with adolescents compared to working with younger children and families, one could argue that it requires a different expertise or skillset. Working with adolescents is a grey area in the sense it doesn’t fit nicely into causal, linear systems and laws we follow, which are often geared towards younger children and families. An action and plan-based approach can be more productive in keeping younger children safe.

Full story: Community Care

CEOP

'Being a teenage mother is so lonely' (15/01/2018)

Teenage pregnancy rates in the UK have halved in the past eight years, but are still among the highest in Europe. New government guidelines are being released to help councils reduce the numbers further. Shannon was 14 and her boyfriend Ethan 17 when she became pregnant with their son, Harvey, who is now two. "Being a parent is one of the loneliest places I've been. You lose a lot of your friends, they don't want to focus on this little baby," she says. "You don't want people to see that you're struggling and get the impression that you're a bad mum because you're struggling. It's one of those things you keep in."

Full story: BBC

CEOP

Places deadline: Top tips on choosing a school (15/01/2018)

Parents of rising-fives in England have until midnight tonight to apply for primary school places for their children. It can be a tense time, with the most popular schools often massively oversubscribed. In some areas, high-performing schools can be thin on the ground, with warnings of a postcode lottery when it comes to access. On top of this, a sharp increase in pupil numbers in recent years has made the primary school admissions process increasingly tense.

Full story: BBC

CYP Now

LGA issues child protection warning over social care funding gap (12/01/2018)

Children could be left in circumstances of risk unless the government acts to plug an estimated £2bn funding gap, councils have warned. The Local Government Association (LGA) said that children's services in England now receive a new referral every 49 seconds and now the government needs to provide more money to help councils meet the demand for social care. It has warned that, unless more funding is forthcoming, social workers will struggle to deal with current levels of child protection concerns, meaning children could be left in potentially dangerous circumstances.

Full story: Children and Young People Now

CYP Now

Lack of duty on schools 'could compromise safeguarding shake-up' (12/01/2018)

Government plans to overhaul local child safeguarding arrangements risk being compromised by a failure to involve schools, council leaders have warned. Both the Local Government Association (LGA) and Association of Directors of Children's Services (ADCS) have issued the warning in response to government proposals to abolish local safeguarding children boards (LSCBs) and replace them with a new system of multi-agency arrangements. These would involve councils, police and health organisations as core partners but not schools, according to proposed changes to Working Together guidance designed to pave the way for the new arrangements.

Full story: Children and Young People Now

Fixers

Getting Serious About Mental Health (12/01/2018)

A young man from Southport, who has battled depression and anxiety, is showing that mental health is just as important as physical health. Matthew Bousfield, 17, is concerned that others with similar experiences to his aren’t taken seriously enough, which can make the problem worse. He has now created a powerful film with Fixers, encouraging people to take more notice of mental wellbeing so others can get help sooner.

Full story: Fixers

Guardian

Bullying as damaging as child abuse – and needs same resources, expert says (12/01/2018)

Patrick McGorry has warned bullying can be as damaging for youth mental health as child abuse, while calling for a major expansion of support services following Amy “Dolly” Everett’s death. McGorry, a former Australian of the year and youth mental health expert, said the behavioural and cultural change needed to reduce bullying would require a “large-scale social movement”, similar to those targeting family violence, child abuse, and sexual harassment.

Full story: Guardian

Community Care

Social workers could use social media checks to ‘enhance’ assessments, serious case review says (11/01/2018)

Social workers could “enhance” their assessments of families by using social media, a serious case review has said. The review into the death of a two-year-old boy said: “Checks on the internet and social media can provide publicly available information about lifestyle and relationships to inform assessments.” The review cited the example of an “exorcism video” of the boy’s mother being found by the press after his death, which it said could have been found by an internet search during work with the family.

Full story: Community Care

CYP Now

Girls 'twice as likely' to experience emotional problems as boys (11/01/2018)

Girls are more than twice as likely to experience emotional problems as boys, according to the initial findings of a £56m programme aimed at improving mental health support for young people. The Big Lottery Fund's five-year HeadStart programme, which launched last year, is designed to help improve the mental health resilience of 10- to 16-year-olds in schools across six council areas. The first piece of research from the programme, involving a survey of more than 30,000 pupils aged between 11 and 14 at participating HeadStart schools, found that 25 per cent of girls said they had experienced emotional problems, compared with 11 per cent of boys.

Full story: Children and Young People Now

Community Care

Child on parent violence: ‘The reality is that this issue remains in the shadows of work with families’ (11/01/2018)

At Community Care Live in September I asked a room full of over 200 social workers if they knew of – or worked with – children who were sometimes violent to their families, carers or parents. Without pause the overwhelming majority of them raised their hands. It was a rhetorical question with limited risk of getting a silent ‘no’ as there has been a resounding ‘yes’ from professionals that we’ve asked that question to over the last year. I, along with colleagues, have been asking this question since the release of the reports authored by Dr Wendy Thorley of Sunderland University based on the 2016 child on parent violence survey.

Full story: Community Care