Assessment: When Does it Help and When Does it Hinder?

A recent publication from Nathan Harris

Harris, Nathan (2012) Assessment: When Does it Help and When Does it Hinder? Parents’ Experiences of the Assessment Process. Child & Family Social Work, 17(2), 180-191.

Abstract

This paper addresses ongoing concerns about how child protection alienates and confuses many parents. It proposes that a significant reason for this is that statutory agencies have become reliant on ‘formalistic assessment’. As a consequence interactions with parents have become dominated by a focus on assessment-compliance. A qualitative study of 40 parents who had recently been investigated in Australia for the first time by child protection is reported. The analysis suggests that many parents find characteristics of assessment processes intrusive and that this undermines engagement. It is concluded that there should be greater debate about the role that assessment plays in child protection practice.

The author’s publications can be downloaded here