1.4 Terminology

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Last reviwed in March 2020


A glossary of terms which have a technical significance or for which abbreviations have been used in the text, is provided in the Keywords & Contacts resource.


To facilitate understanding of the procedures, users should note that the following social work related terms are used throughout the text:

  • Child to refer to anyone under 18 years old;
  • Children's social care refers to the functional division within what have traditionally been termed social services departments which provide support, protection and care services to families and children;
  • Social worker describes the practitioner with case responsibility (for children subject to a child protection plan this will be a registered social worker) NOTE: you cannot call yourself a social worker unless you are registered;
  • Duty social worker to describe the departmental point of contact with respect to new referrals, closed or unallocated cases or cover provided for the unavailability of a named member of staff;
  • Supervising social worker (link or family placement worker or fostering officer) to describe the practitioner working with foster carers;
  • First line manager describes the team manager responsible for a team of social workers or her/his assistant, or practice manager / supervisor;
  • Service manager refers to the second line manager to whom a first line manager reports (sometimes called operational manager);
  • Child protection adviser to refer to the officer in Children's social care who offers off line advice and/or provides chairing of child protection conferences (independent reviewing officer in Brighton & Hove);
  • Senior child protection manager refers to the person responsible for the database of children subject to child protection plans, conference chairs and the provision of specialist advice, and child protection advisors.
This page is correct as printed on Thursday 18th of April 2024 01:19:06 AM please refer back to this website (http://sussexchildprotection.procedures.org.uk) for updates.