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Working with Difficult, Evasive and Challenging Families

Course Title:
Working with Difficult, Evasive and Challenging Families
Course Code:

Both national and local serious case reviews and lessons learnt reviews have highlighted situations where professionals have delayed or avoided safeguarding interventions because of challenging, difficult or evasive behaviour by parents or carers . The Serious Case Review into the death of Daniel Pelka (2013) challenged workers to ‘think the unthinkable’ and to ‘believe and act upon what they saw in front of them, rather than accept parental versions of what was happening at home without robust challenge’.  However difficult and challenging behaviour by parents & carers, by its very nature, makes it difficult for professionals who are involved with a family to maintain an objective view of progress in safeguarding the welfare of a child.   Difficult behaviour can mislead professionals and can prevent or delay understanding of the severity of harm being experienced by children in the family.

Please note that if you are booking from Education Services or from outside the Boroughs of Richmond and Kingston there will be a booking fee of £60

  Scheduled Dates For Course:
Course DateEnd Date of RegistrationTimeVenue
19/05/2020 12/05/2020 09:30-13:30 York House,
Richmond Road,
Course Duration:
Half Day
  Delivered By:
  Aimed At:

Multi agency.


Safeguarding & child protection work is complex, and it can be hard when professionals have busy caseloads to ‘dig deeper’.  This training will provide practitioners with an opportunity to reflect on what difficult, challenging and evasive behaviour looks like and consider the impact of aggressive behaviour from parents and carers on professional judgement.

This training will provide an overview of learnings for national and local serious case reviews, lessons learnt reviews and research on engaging with and working with parents and carers who are difficult, evasive and challenging.  It will explore concepts such as disguised compliance and false compliance and consider the implications for assessing risk and safeguarding practice.

The training will explore the complexities of talking about personal and sensitive safeguarding & child protection issues with parents and carers and support practitioners to develop their communication and engagement skills. 

This training will include the use of actors and provide an opportunity for delegates to engage in the learning and skills development in an experiential and interactive way.

  Learning Outcomes:

Following the training, delegates will -

Have explored what constitutes difficult, evasive & challenging behaviour.

Have considered learning from national and local serious case reviews and lessons learnt reviews and research about engaging with and working with families where there is reluctance & resistance.

Have had an opportunity to participate in an experiential sessions with actors for reflection and skills development.   

Have considered the implication of difficult, evasive and challenging behaviour parents & carers for safeguarding practice and risk assessments. 

  Reading Material:
No Course Material Available