Rethinking Residential Child Care

Rethinking Residential Child Care : Positive Perspectives

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Residential child care is a crucial, though relatively neglected area of social work. And yet, revelations of abuse and questions of effectiveness have led to increasingly regulatory and procedural approaches to practice and heightened political and professional interest. This book provides a broad and critical look at policy and practice and the ideas that have shaped the development of the sector. The book sets present day provision within historical, policy and organisational context, and discusses a range of practice issues. The importance of the personal relationship in helping children to grow and develop is highlighted.The author applies a critical gaze to attempts to improve practice through regulation and, fundamentally, challenges how residential child care is conceptualised, arguing that it needs to move beyond dominant discourses of protection and rights to embrace those of care and upbringing. Other traditions of practice such as the European concept of social pedagogy are also explored to more accurately reflect the task of residential child care. The book will be of interest to practitioners in residential child care, social workers and students on social work and social care courses. It should be required reading for social work managers and will also be of interest to policy makers and students of social policy, education and childhood studies.

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Product details

  • Book | 224 pages
  • 156 x 230 x 16mm | 381.02g
  • Policy Press
  • Bristol, United Kingdom
  • English
  • New.
  • 1861349084
  • 9781861349088
  • 560,953

Review quote

"This is, without question, one of the best books I have ever read on residential care. It is a thoughtful, reflective and practical presentation which will help us all be better at what we do." Thom Garfat, Editor, CYC-Net"Comprehensive and critical, yet hopeful about the possibilities, this book is for workers who care for disadvantaged children in any setting, and for thinkers who want to understand what is happening to the child care system and why." Ian Milligan, Assistant Director (Education), Scottish Institute for Residential Child Care

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About Mark Smith

Dr Mark Smith is senior lecturer and head of social work at the University of Edinburgh. He has previous practice experience in residential child care.

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Table of contents

The context of care; History; Inquiries and their impact; Trends and policy directions; Theorising residential child care; The residential environment; Assessment, care planning and programming; Working at the boundaries: the personal and professional relationship; Residential childcare in a continuum of care; Other traditions of practice; Conclusion: rethinking residential child care.

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