case study: Imran is 2 years old and has been attending the nursery for a few weeks: usually Imran enjoys all aspects of her day at the nursery and willingly plays alongside others. Today Imran has appeared a little more quiet than usual. As Imran’s key worker took her to the bathroom he notices 3 long marks on her lower back, these marks are red and sore.
In this situation it is vital to be sensitive in handling it and every aspect about the situation, you have to think about whether it is appropriate to call social services there and then and risk false accusation, or to leave it for now and monitor the situation and see if anything progresses. In this kind of situation it is appropriate for the confidentiality to be broken because people will need to know about the situation, you must be very careful when addressing the incident and make sure nobody else can overhear, it is important that the manager is informed so then he or she can make a decision about what to do next, this can be extremely difficult because, without speaking to the child or their parents, you can never know for certain if the marks are caused from abuse.
Being sensitive at all times is paramount and you shouldn’t address the parents or alarm them unless you are completely sure or really worried. It is difficult for the manager to decide whether to let social services know, or whether it would be in the child’s best interests to keep a close eye on the child to see if the marks keep coming back.
If the manager decides to make a disclosure then this could affect the relationship between parents and the nursery. If you notify the parents straight away, particularly if you suspect that the marks may be caused by one of them, this might cause the parents to take the child out of nursery and therefore they are not in your care and you can’t be sure how the