Everyone involved in the Children’s Hearings System has signed up to a programme called Better Hearings.

This initiative – which covers the whole of Scotland – is led by the Children’s Hearings Improvement Partnership (CHIP). It brings together the key partners involved in the Hearings System to ensure that the experience of coming to a Hearing is the best it can be for children, young people and parents/carers.

Children and young people have told us what makes a Better Hearing – this includes how people behave in a Hearing, how Hearings are conducted and where Hearings are held.

This led to a set of standards which aim to ensure that children and young people can understand and participate effectively at all stages in their Hearing process, and that they are given the right supports at the right time.

Over the past year, Better Hearing groups involving Children’s Reporter, Panel Members, social workers, teachers and others have been set up to take this work forward. Every area has an action plan to make improvements to the Children’s Hearings System.

Some examples include:

  • Improvements to Hearing rooms to make them more user friendly.
  • Training of Panel Members by Advocacy Workers to better understand participation and engagement.
  • Focus groups of children and young people have been carried out to get their views and ideas for improvement.
  • Creation of guides for professionals to use in preparing children and young people for Hearings.

We will be able to give you much more information around the changes and improvements as we make them – and we will keep on making them because this programme of work is about continuous improvement which means it doesn’t stop when the action plan ends – we review and evaluate – we keep doing what is working, we change what isn’t and we plan new improvements as we need them.

If you have any questions about Better Hearings, then please get in touch!

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