Thursday, 4 September 2014

Ashya King - a Serious Case Review is required

Regular readers of this blog will know that I am no fan of the Serious Case Review (SCR). SCRs are unwieldy and and imprecise ways of studying error and they consume lots of time and resources, often to no good effect.

We are however stuck with SCRs in the short-term because other ways of trying to learn about how things go wrong in child protection have not yet been put in place. Bad as SCRs are, they are all we have.

That's why I think there should be an SCR in the case of Ashya King. Clearly things have gone very wrong in the way the authorities responded. The effect has been that the child and his family have suffered greatly, seemingly unnecessarily.

My bet is that the powers that be will not want to have an SCR in this case. They will find some bureaucratic reason to avoid it. But I think we need to know as much about over-reactions as we do about under-reactions. Sad as it is when things go wrong, it is always an opportunity to learn.