Laura (aged 5), Joe (aged 3) and Luke (18 months) were referred to children and families social work (a secondary intervention program) by addiction services who were working with their mother Alison and her partner Derek (father to Luke). Alison’s addiction workers raised concerns about her increasing use of illicit diazepam, although it was noted that she been stable on methadone prescription since she became pregnant with Luke. Alison was engaging positively with her addiction worker and reliably attended all appointments. She often bought Joe with her to her appointments and her worker noted a recent decline in his physical presentation.
Information from Derek’s addiction worker suggested a similar pattern of substance misuse. His worker advised that Derek had a history of violence and aggressive behaviour towards professionals and was particularly resistant to social work support with regard to the children.
A social work records check revealed that support had been provided for just over a year following Joe’s premature birth. Concerns at the time surrounded Alison’s drug misuse and Joe’s father’s violent behaviour. From birth, Joe had had a number of health and development concerns, including needed to be tube fed. Joe had been diagnosed with global development delay, a visual impairment and mobility difficulties. Social work records indicated that Alison’s relationship with Joe’s father had ended shortly after his birth and she subsequently made significant positive progress in terms of minimizing her drug use. She also demonstrated her ability to meet Joe’s complex needs, along with caring for Laura. Alison engaged positively with all relevant professionals and the children’s case was closed to social work when Joe was one year. He continued to receive a high level of support from a team of health professionals.
At the point of re-referral, Joe’s GP reported an increase in missed health appointments and said that concern had been expressed about Derek’s presentation and behaviour at a recent hospital appointment. Hospital staff reported that he appeared to be under the influence of drugs or alcohol and, when challenged, became verbally aggressive and was asked to leave.
Initial inquiries revealed that Laura was attending the local primary school and making slow but steady progress. School staff reported that her attendance was acceptable, with occasional absences and late arrivals. Her physical presentation was described as poor and she had been noted to arrive without a coat on cold winter mornings.
Joe was attending the nursery(early learning centre) attached to the school and the staff were extremely pleased with his progress. Much of the intervention from health professionals was taking place in the nursery. Luke’s name was on the waiting list for the nursery. Staff reported that Alison had been attending all relevant meetings but noted that Derek was generally uncommunicative when collecting the children.
Review the literature in relation to Child Centred Practice and, in particular the importance of rights, development and wellbeing of children.
You must demonstrate you understand Child Centred Practice
Draft an analysis of the case study from the perspective of Child Centred Practice focusing on the rights, development and wellbeing of Joe.
Your analysis should include:
An overview of Child Centred Practice
The definition and philosophy of child centred practice
The challenges associated with child centred practice
Analysis of the case study particularly referring to Joe’s circumstances
Specifically, you should apply child centred practice to inform your interpretations and practice with Joe.