The Care and Protection of Children and Families - SA531

Location Term Level Credits (ECTS) Current Convenor 2018-19 2019-20
Canterbury Autumn
View Timetable
6 15 (7.5)







This module provides a broad introduction to social care services for children and families in the UK, covering the major debates, perspectives and challenges associated with child care policy and practice. This includes the high-profile and complex issues associated with child abuse and protection, and the less well-known but equally important services to support families and prevent abuse and neglect. Also covered will be the workings of the care system, its perceived links with social exclusion and key areas of provision such as residential care, foster care and adoption. Although there are no formal pre-equisites for this module, SO538 Childhood Society and Children's Rights deals with related issues and provides very useful background information for this module.


This module appears in:

Contact hours

11 weekly lectures and seminars, each of an hour

Method of assessment

50% coursework (1 essay 3500 words) and 50% 2-hour written examination (summer term)

Preliminary reading

Kirton D (2009) Child Social Work Policy and Practice. Sage
Parton N (2014) The Politics of Child Proetection: Contemporary developments and future directions. Palgrave
Stein M (2009) Quality Matters in Children's Services: messages from reserach, Jessica Kingsley
Parton N (2006) Safeguarding Childhood: Early Intervention and Surveillance in a Late Modern Society. Palgrave
Davies M (ed)(2012) Social Work with Children and Families, Palgrave
Frost N and Parton N (2009) Understanding Children's Social Care. Sage
Shaw, J and Frost N (2013) Young People and the Care Experience. Routledge

See the library reading list for this module (Canterbury)

See the library reading list for this module (Medway)

Learning outcomes

On completion of this module, students will:
Have acquired an understanding of the key policy and practice issues associated with family support, child protection, substitute (family) care
Be familiar with competing perspectives relating to child care – their differing interpretations of, and emphases upon; the rights of children’s and families, and the role of the state – and their influence on policy and practice
Have an understanding of the legal framework within which social care services are delivered
Have developed skills in presentation and debate, both verbal and written, and in utilization of research and statistical data
Demonstrate a critical appreciation of ‘evidence-based practice’ in relation to work with children and families

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