About the Board


About the Board

Darlington Safeguarding Children Board (DSCB) is a statutory body which is independently chaired and consists of senior representatives of all the key agencies and organisations working together to safeguard and promote the welfare of children and young people in Darlington.

Its objectives are to:

  • Co-ordinate local work undertaken by all agencies and individuals to safeguard and promote the welfare of children and young people
  • Ensure the effectiveness of that work

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Our Independent Chair

Is Simon Hart

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Membership of the Board



 Agency Job Title
Darlington Borough Council [External Link]

Director of Children and Adult Services

Assistant Director for Children's Services

Assistant Director Commissioning, Performance and Transformation

Head of First Contact and Locality Services

NHS England [External Link] Deputy Director of Nursing
CAFCASS [External Link] Service Manager
Darlington College [External Link] Deputy Principal
Durham Constabulary [External Link] Detective Superintendent
Darlington Clinical Commissioning Group [External Link]

Director of Nursing and Quality

County Durham and Darlington NHS Foundation Trust [External Link] Associate Director of Nursing for Patient Experience and Safeguarding
Harrogate and District NHS Foundation Trust [External Link] Head of Safeguarding
Community Rehabilitation Company [External Link] Director of Operations
National Probation Service [External Link] Head of Durham National Probation Service
Tees, Esk and Wear Valley NHS Foundation Trust [External Link] Associate Director of Nursing
Hurworth House School [External Link] Head Teacher
Education Village [External Link] Assistant Headteacher Beaumont Hill Academy
Longfield Academy of Sport [External Link] Senior Assistant Head Teacher
Lingfield Education Trust [External Link]

Chief Executive

Lay Member


 Advisors to the Board

Agency Job Title
 Darlington Borough Council  [External Link]                                               

Director of Public Health                                                           

Principal Lawyer

 Darlington Clinical Commissioning Group [External Link]

Designated Doctor

Designated Nurse

The Lead Member, Cyndi Hughes [external link] for Children and Young People is an Observer on the Board.

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The Board have a constitution [PDF Document] which sets out their governance and accountability arrangements for the Darlington Safeguarding Children Board.  In addition the Board have an executive summary [PDF Document] of the constitution.

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Structure of the Board

The structure of the DSCB is three tier [diagram] which includes the Board, Business Group and Subgroups.

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Strategic Partnerships

The DSCB works in partnership with other strategic partnerships with the aim to have strong joint working arrangements across agencies, which coordinates the vision, aims and priorities for Darlington and its population.  The strategic partnerships are:

  • Darlington Safeguarding Adults Partnership Board: Both DSCB and DSAPB recognise that safeguarding the most vulnerable within the community is a shared responsibility and there must be a ‘whole family’ approach and share a common business unit and responsibility for multi-agency training.
  • Community Safety Partnership: brings together five responsible authorities: Darlington Borough Council, the Durham Constabulary, NHS Darlington Clinical Commissioning Group, National Probation Service/Community Rehabilitation Company, Durham and Darlington Fire and Rescue Service which have a legal duty to work together to tackle crime, anti-social behaviour, substance misuse, environmental crime and issues around re-offending. In addition to the responsible authorities the CSP also brings together a range of partners from the public, private and voluntary sectors who are all engaged in activities which contribute towards making Darlington a safe place in which to live and work. The responsible authorities must also ensure that the CSP has a Community Safety Plan 2015/2020. [PDF Document]
  • Darlington Partnership have developed the Sustainable Community Strategy ‘One Darlington: Perfectly Placed’ [PDF Document] which aims to improve quality of life for all, promote the economic prosperity of the Borough and reduce inequality. The Darlington Partnership provides the strategic lead and also links into the wider devolution agenda as this develops
  • Health and Wellbeing Board (HWB): The Health and Social Care Act 2012 established health and wellbeing boards as a forum where key leaders from the health and care system work together to improve the health and wellbeing of their local population and reduce health inequalities.
  • Darlington Children and Young Peoples Collective (this is the equivalent of the Children’s Trust) and oversees the Darlington Children and Young Peoples plan 2014 -17 [PDF Document].
  • Local Family Justice Board: Darlington Borough Council Legal and CAFCASS representatives, represent the DSCB perspective on the Local Family Justice Board.
  • Vulnerability Group which is a sub group of the community safety partnership oversees the arrangements for domestic abuse in Darlington.

A Darlington Protocol has been endorsed by the DSCB which sets out the key roles of each of the Boards and how they link with each other and the means by which they will ensure that leadership and accountability for issues of common interest are clear.  

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Board Member Induction Pack

The Board Member Induction Pack [PDF document] outlines the role and responsibilities of Board members and includes information about safeguarding, the role of the Boards and how this fits in with other strategic and operational groups in Darlington. 

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Annual Report

The Board publishes an annual report which sets out the effectiveness of the arrangements in Darlington to safeguard and promote the welfare of children.

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Business Plan

The Board has a three year business plan [Word Document] which is reviewed at least annually.

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Annual Reports to Board

The Board receives a number of annual reports each year from differing service areas providing an overview of activities for that period.

Independent Reviewing Officer Annual Report 2016-17

Private Fostering Annual Report 2016-17

Managing Allegations Annual Report 2016-17

Key Messages


NWG Network

Sunday 18th March is National CSE Awareness Day. The NWG (National Working Group) want the world to unite against child sexual exploitation. The National Child Sexual Exploitation Awareness Day aims to highlight the issues surrounding CSE; encouraging everyone to think, spot and speak out against abuse and adopt a zero tolerance to adults developing inappropriate relationships with children or children developing inappropriate relationships with other children.  Further information is available on the NWGERASE and stop-cse org websites.

Safeguarding Boards Lay Member Recruitment 2018

Safeguarding is everyone’s business and Darlington Safeguarding Adult Board (DSAPB) and Darlington Safeguarding Children Board (DSCB) are seeking to recruit Lay Members to the Boards.

The role of the Lay Member is to raise awareness within the community of abuse and neglect and what action should be taken when abuse is suspected. The Lay Member will also promote the welfare of children and adults at risk and will raise awareness of the work of the Safeguarding Boards.  We are seeking individuals who reside in Darlington, have an active role within the community and an interest in safeguarding children and/or adults and who would like to help shape safeguarding policy and practice. 

The role is voluntary but expenses such as travel will be reimbursed if required. For more information about the role of Lay member, details of who is eligible and how to apply go www.darlingtonsafeguardingboards.co.uk/lay-member-recruitment-2018. The closing date for applications is Friday 2nd March 2018. 

Safer Internet Day 2018

Safer Internet Day 2018 will be celebrated globally on Tuesday 6th February 2018 with the slogan 'Create, Connect and Share Respect: A better internet starts with you'. Further details and resources are available on the UK Safer Internet Centre website and ERASE website (To educate and raise awareness of child sexual exploitation). 

January 2018 - Updated Procedures and Practice Guidance

DSCB has reviewed and/or developed the following Procedures and Practice Guidance, click on the links below to view:

Safeguarding children from Dangerous Dogs Practice Guidance (Dec 2017) [PDF Document]

Female Genital Mutilation Practice Guidance (Dec 2017) [PDF Document]

Procedure and Practice Guidance for managing allegations against staff and volunteers working with children (Dec 2017) [PDF Document] 

Child Protection Processes - Glossary of Terms (Jan 2018) [PDF Document]

Private Fostering Guidance (Jan 2018) [PDF Document]

December 2017 - Updated Procedures and Practice Guidance

DSCB has updated the following Procedures and Practice Guidance, click on the links below to view:

Children Missing from Home, Care or Education (Dec 2017) [PDF Document]

Child Sexual Exploitation Procedure and Practice Guidance (Dec 2017) [PDF Document]

Working Together - revised guidance for safeguarding children

The draft revised statutory Working Together guidance has been published and is open for consultation until 31st December 2017. To view the guidance please follow the link:  https://consult.education.gov.uk/child-protection-safeguarding-and-family-law/working-together-to-safeguard-children-revisions-t/ [External Link].

Hollie Guard

Hollie Guard is a new smartphone application which enables your phone to be used as a personal alarm, to discreetly get help, and alert friends and family to your whereabouts. Further information is available on the Hollie Guard website [External link] 

NICE Child Abuse and Neglect Guidance

NICE (National Institute for Health and Care Excellence) have produced some Child Abuse and Neglect Guidance.  The guidance aims to help anyone whose work brings them into contact with children and young people to spot signs of abuse and neglect and to know how to respond. To review the guidance click on the link below.

NICE Child Abuse and Neglect Guidance

Information for professional people working with gender variant and transgender young people under 18 years.

Mermaids UK Charity have produced a fact sheet for practitioners who are supporting young people who may be gender variant, questioning their gender or identified as being transgender. The fact sheet provides information and signposting and useful links.

The Mermaids UK Charity Fact sheet [PDF Document]

Living in Fear - the Police and Crime Prosecution Service response to harassment and stalking

Following a joint inspection of Constabulary and the Crown Prosecution service on the approach to tackling crimes of harassment and stalking a report outlines a number of recommendations from the Home Office, the Police and the CPS. The report is available on the link below.

HMIC and HMCPSI Inspection Report into harassment and stalking [External Link]

Safeguarding Week 2017 - 'Safeguarding is everybody's business'

Safeguarding week aims to raise awareness of different forms of abuse across both children and adults and how everyone has a role to play in spotting signs of abuse. The week runs from 9th to 13th October 2017.  Details of what is happening during this week within the different organisations across Darlington is available by clicking on the link below:

Safeguarding Week 2017 events

You can obtain further information on what is happening within each organisation by viewing their social media accounts such as Facebook and Twitter.

If you are concerned that someone you know may be subject to abuse you should report it. Information on how to do this is available on the links below:

To report a concern about a child

To report a concern about an adult 

Department for Education (Dfe) - Exclusion from maintained schools, Academies and pupil referral units in England

The Department for Education (DfE) has published statutory guidance setting out the legal responsibilities for those who exclude students from educational settings in England.  To view the guidance click here [PDF Document].

Local approach to tackling Child Sexual Exploitation in Darlington

Darlington Safeguarding Children Board has developed an elearning resource to support the multi-agency partnership on the local approach in Darlington to tackle child sexual exploitation.  The aim of the elearning resource is to support all practitioners working with children and young people in Darlington to have a thorough understanding of the child sexual exploitation process in order to safeguard, protect children from harm and improve their outcomes.

Click link to access resource [External Link]

Department for Education (DfE)- Preventing and tackling bullying (July 2017)

The DfE has updated it guidance on preventing and tackling bullying which contains advice and guidance for headteachers, staff and governing bodies.  To view the guidance click here [PDF Document].

Multi-Agency Public Protection Arrangements (MAPPA) Information Sharing Briefing

An information sharing briefing has been developed with support by Paul Oldham, MAPPA Co-ordinator to enable practitioners to better understand information sharing to enable agencies to work more effectively together in assessing risk and considering how to manage them.  Click here [PDF Document] to view the Briefing.

Updated procedures and practice Guidance

DSCB has updated the following procedures and practice guidance click on the links below to view.

Fabricated or Induced Illness Practice Guidance [PDF Document]

Organised and Multiple Abuse Procedure and Practice Guidance [PDF Document]

Child Death Overview Panel Procedures [PDF Document]

'Keep Them Safe' CSE Training resource for parents and professionals

PACE (Parents against Child Sexual Exploitation) are providing a free CSE training resource for parents and professionals called 'Keep them Safe'.  It is an introductory online course designed to help teach the signs and impacts of CSE and what to do if you think a child is being exploited.  Click link  [External Link] to access resource.

Multi-Agency child Protection Procedures

A new online version of multi-agency child protection procedures will be launched on 1st June 2017.  The procedures are applicable to all those working in the Darlington Locality, whether paid or unpaid in private or voluntary sector organisations with responsibility for children. These procedures replace all previous procedure manuals.  To view the procedures click here.  A poster [PDF Document] has been developed to promote the procedures and new continuum of need and multi-agency referral form.  

Darlington Association on Disability: Reducing Bullying of Disabled Children:  

DAD’s Young Leaders, have been working with the Anti Bullying Alliance and the Council for Disabled Children on the All Together Programme to make a short film about some of the positive things that they use the internet for and staying safe online. The All Together Programme offers training support and resources to schools to help them combat bullying.  The programme has been developed over the last three years and builds upon the work of the Anti-Bullying Alliance’s previous SEND anti-bullying champion programme. The programme includes a special focus on reducing bullying of disabled children and those with SEN but aims to reduce bullying of all children and young people.This video now forms part of the resources available through the programme and is being shared through national networks to raise awareness and combat bullying. Click on the link to see the film: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1tGLyhMOpvo [External Link]

Continuum of Need Indicator and Multi-agency referral form

The Continuum of Need Indicator (threshold tool) [PDF Document] that supports all practitioners working with children, young people and families has been refreshed to include additional circumstances such as; child sexual exploitation, female genital mutilation; missing from home, care or education. The tool will be used to determine the threshold when considering whether a referral will be accepted or whether an assessment will be undertaken and to establish what services will be offered or provided.  It is intended that poster size copies of the document will be available for all settings over the new few months.  If you would like a copy of the poster, please contact the business unit on 01325 406452 or e-mail: safeguardingboards@darlington.gov.uk

In addition the multi-agency referral form [Word Document] has also been updated to map against the new Social Care system and Early Help documents.   Can you please ensure all future referrals are provided on this form. 

Please note following changes to the Local Authority Front Door services - the Children's Access Point (CAP) will be the access point for all contacts regarding children, the team will also undertake the Multi-Agency Safeguarding Hub function.    The team previously known as MASH will become the Children First Response Team and will be responsible for the strategy discussions on new cases and Section 47 and will be completing assessments that on presentation require an assessment that indicates it can be completed in a short time period.

CAP contact details remain the same and are available here.

Notifiable Incident Procedure and Practice Guidance [Word Document] has been approved by the Children Board.  The Guidance identifies the responsibilities of partner organisations  to inform Darlington Borough Council of any incident that may meet the criteria of notifiable incident and seriously harmed.

Operation Encompass Launch - Darlington Borough Council is working with police and schools to improve the support for children affected by domestic abuse. Young people who see or hear arguments and violence at home often arrive for classes the next day upset and unprepared. Darlington Borough Council and the police are set to work more closely to better share information so teachers can provide the help their pupils may need.  Further information and sample templates on the initiative can be found here.

Nathan Gaskill, the first ever Young Durham Police, Crime & Victims' Commissioner for County Durham and Darlington talks about #CSE and the impact it can have on young people.  Watch his short video clip below.



In March 2017 the Department for Education is launching a national radio partnership.

‘Together, we can tackle child abuse’ is a Government campaign to raise awareness and encourage members of the public to report child abuse and neglect. The campaign aims to encourage the public to report their concerns in order to get help to children more quickly.  The aim is  to create a new social norm around reporting and tackle the barriers that stop people taking action.

The core audience is parents aged 25-40. Research shows that this group is most likely to feel confident about reporting and can therefore be nudged into action. The campaign will serve as a reminder to professionals such as teachers and healthcare professionals who work with children, of their safeguarding responsibilities. The purpose of the campaign is to reassure the public that anything they notice can help a child at risk and that ‘if you think it, report it’.

Self-Harm Pathway and Guidance [PDF Document] has been approved by the Children Board.  The guidance has been developed to provide practitioners with referral pathways  for children who self-harm or are at risk of suicide in Darlington.

PREVENT Practice Guidance and Channel Process [PDF Document] has been approved at both the Children and Adult Board meetings.  The guidance has been developed to provide a clear framework for professionals with which to respond to safeguarding concerns for children, young people and adults who may be vulnerable to the messages of extremism in all its forms.  It also provides details of the local inter agency process and expectations in respect of safeguarding children and adults and the Channel process.

Information Sharing Protocol [PDF Document] has been approved at both the Children and Adult Board meetings. The protocol provides the framework for collaborative working to support individuals to share information to safeguard children and adults in Darlington.

Helping children and young people understand their rights - Coram Children's Legal Centre has launched Lawstuff, a website to help children and young people find out about their rights.  Information provided includes: online safety; children's services; home and family; abuse and bullying. To view visit their website. [External Link]

New Child Sexual Exploitation Definition: The Department for Education has changed the statutory definition of child sexual exploitation after concluding the previous version was “unclear and out of date”. Working Together [External Link] child safeguarding guidance has been updated to reflect the changes, and issued a new guide for practitioners on working with child sexual exploitation. [PDF Document]


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The e-bulletin is a joint bulletin with the Darlington Safeguarding Adult's Partnership Board (DSAPB).  The bulletins highlight new guidance, research, developments in safeguarding across children and adult's Boards'.  All the organisations on the Boards' contribute to the e-bulletin to promote and inform those individuals who work with both children and adults at risk (as defined by the Care Act 2014)

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After each Board meeting the Board develops a 'Messages Bulletin' which is aimed at the general public and those people working with children to have an understanding of the Board's work.  

If you wish to keep up to date with everything related to the Children Safeguarding Board then please don't hesitate to sign up to our newsletter and our E-bulletin: SafeguardingBoards@darlington.gov.uk.

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Communication and Engagement Strategy

The Darlington Safeguarding Children Board (DSCB) and Darlington Safeguarding Adults Partnership Board (DSAPB) have developed a joint Communication and Engagement Strategy [PDF document] to embrace the 'Think Family' approach and ensure that the work of both Boards' is effectively communicated to the relevant audiences such as children, young people, adults at risk, families and the wider community in Darlington.  

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