Home > Requirements > The 'Every Child Matters' Policy Explained

The 'Every Child Matters' Policy Explained

By: Rachel Newcombe - Updated: 3 Oct 2018 | comments*Discuss
 
Every Child Matters Matter Policy Child

If you work with children, or you’re a parent, then you may well have come across mentions of the Every Child Matters policy. But in simple terms, what exactly was it and what did it mean?

The Every Child Matters policy was thought up and implemented by New Labour. It was launched in 2003, but there was a significant movement away from it in 2010 under David Cameron and the Coalition Government. Instead, the government returned to child health checks via health visitors and social workers. Today, through 'Safeguarding' organisations are under an obligation to ensure that the way they work with children keeps them safe and does not place them at unacceptable risk of harm.The Every Child Matters policy applied to the well-being of children and young people from birth up until they reached the age of 19. It was based on the idea that every child, regardless of their individual circumstances or background, should have plenty of support throughout their life.

There were five key principles to the policy which the government believed children should have support with. These were:

  • To be healthy.
  • To stay safe.
  • To enjoy and achieve.
  • To make a positive contribution.
  • To achieve economic well-being.

Putting the Policy Into Action

The policy applied to everyone who worked in any capacity with children, or provided services to children. This included professionals such as teachers, social workers, foster carers, hospitals, children’s homes, social services and the police, as well as any voluntary groups or charities who worked with children. The idea was that at the core of all the work they did, these five simple aspects should be remembered and put into action, to ensure children got a better start in life.

ECM was launched, partly in response to the failure of English schools to prevent the abuse and death of Victoria Climbie, an eight-year-old girl who died in 2000. Victoria was tortured to death by her great-aunt, Marie Therese Kouao, and her boyfriend Carl Manning.

The abuse she suffered was never tackled despite repeated contact with social services, the NHS and the police. ECM was introduced to help prevent such abuse from happening again.

Currently, all organisations that work with or come into contact with children should have safeguarding polices and procedures to ensure that every child, regardless of their age, gender, religion or ethnicity, can be protected from harm. Safeguarding children and child protection guidance and legislation applies to all children up to the age of 18.

You might also like...
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
[Add a Comment]
Hi there I can see from above you have mentions the Every Child Matters agenda was archived in 2010. What has replaced this?
KWallerhau - 3-Oct-18 @ 11:41 PM
Hi, My daughter is 15 and recently been diagnosed ADHD. She has history of behaviour problems and violence. She has been victimised, needs ignored and threatened with expulsion from a secondary provision because of her behaviour. They knew she was undiagnosed but school reports and reports from therapists stated she was going to be diagnosed ADHD. We have been in for several meetings but they constantly put the blame back to my child and her behaviour. Disagree that she can’t help her behaviour and refused to help her until her behaviour changed. We removed her from there. We are continuing to have difficulties with them as she is at a new provision now that they must pay for and we have asked for her to have taxi to and from because it’s 2 buses, she lacks concentration, lacks social skills and is paranoid that everyone is talking about her because a teacher at this provision told her they was. She also lacks attention to detail and can’t follow simple instructions so is a Safeguarding risk. There were several Safeguarding issues when she was at this provision with her leaving at lunch and not returning, leaving lessons and walking around other parts of the building she wasn’t allowed etc but they are still requesting a letter from the GP because I mentioned panic attacks and they are disregarding all the other information even though they say they haven’t! I have been to my Local MP for help and the papers to expose this provision for its bullying and fighting culture but my child’s needshave and continues to be ignored. Can you help?
Nik22 - 9-Feb-18 @ 1:11 PM
worried - Your Question:
Hi, As a mother, my partner who is not my sons father, has a child to another woman. He is 2 years ago, and his mother smoked so heavily during pregnancy that she went into preterm labour. This child suffers now from asthma, and has continuous illnesses. Since meeting him at aged 2, over the last 5 months, I have noticed many issues. He came to me holding his feet, I took his socks off and noticed that his toenails were that long, they had grown under and dug into his skin - I had to cut the nails to get the skin out, then trim them to a comfortable length. I then noticed his £60 trainers were 2 sizes too small for him, making the situation worse as she does not cut his toe nails. This woman does not like me because of my role as a health care professional and knows I have knowledge. This boy is dressed in the most expensive clothes, yet they do not fit him, he smells of urine, has cradle cap still, his skin is bumpy, raw and itchy which we all know - there are treatments out there to eliminate this, if not improve it. Since having him in my life, I have provided his father on the two days he has him, with shoes that fit, warm clothes, as she only dresses him in tight skinny jeans and a short sleeved tshirt, baring in mind he was premature, meaning he cannot maintain his body temperature. I trim his nails when needed, I had used treatment which has eliminated the cradle cap, used epiderm every time, and it has begun to improve. I reported this to social services and nothing has come of it - I do know she has been reported many times previously and he is currently flagged on the system. I have concerns because she will not accept these shoes as they are second hand, and will not dress him appropriately or maintain his personal hygiene. I am at my wits end with these issues and I feel as though I have a duty of care as my profession, as being a mother and simply because this boy has nobody else to stand up for him.

Our Response:
As you would know, as a healthcare professional, there label of physical neglect is a complicated one, please see NSPCC link here. However, if the father of your stepchild feels the same, then the only way to resolve this issue (if they cannot resolve it between them personally) is through mediation and as a last resort court. Your partner may also wish to speak to the school if he has concerns, or social services again when those concerns arise. You don't say who has reported her previously, but a case can be built up if others are concerned also. The NSPCC link here , may also help.
WorkingWithKids - 26-Jan-18 @ 10:11 AM
Hi, As a mother, my partner who is not my sons father, has a child to another woman. He is 2 years ago, and his mother smoked so heavily during pregnancy that she went into preterm labour. This child suffers now from asthma, and has continuous illnesses. Since meeting him at aged 2, over the last 5 months, I have noticed many issues. He came to me holding his feet, i took his socks off and noticed that his toenails were that long, they had grown under and dug into his skin - i had to cut the nails to get the skin out, then trim them to a comfortable length. I then noticed his £60 trainers were 2 sizes too small for him, making the situation worse as she does not cut his toe nails. This woman does not like me because of my role as a health care professional and knows i have knowledge. This boy is dressed in the most expensive clothes, yet they do not fit him, he smells of urine, has cradle cap still, his skin is bumpy, raw and itchy which we all know - there are treatments out there to eliminate this, if not improve it. Since having him in my life, i have provided his father on the two days he has him, with shoes that fit, warm clothes, as she only dresses him in tight skinny jeans and a short sleeved tshirt, baring in mind he was premature, meaning he cannot maintain his body temperature. I trim his nails when needed, i had used treatment which has eliminated the cradle cap, used epiderm every time, and it has begun to improve. i reported this to social services and nothing has come of it - i do know she has been reported many times previously and he is currently flagged on the system. I have concerns because she will not accept these shoes as they are second hand, and will not dress him appropriately or maintain his personal hygiene. I am at my wits end with these issues and i feel as though i have a duty of care as my profession, as being a mother and simply because this boy has nobody else to stand up for him.
worried - 25-Jan-18 @ 11:53 AM
Marj - Your Question:
My sons been perm excluded for snap chatting video of another child who had a weapon, my son had no part in the weapon thank god. I’m desperate for help to get the perm exclusion lifted as up to last year he was an A student but his father and I split and my son was hit by this. I did tell school but no support was given, my son became lippy at worse until this snap chat which he deeply regrets, not saying he should not be punished but to ruin his future is unfair, please help

Our Response:
Unfortunately, your only recourse is to appeal the exclusion, please see link here .
WorkingWithKids - 23-Jan-18 @ 11:47 AM
My sons been perm excluded for snap chatting video of another child who had a weapon, my son had no part in the weapon thank god. I’m desperate for help to get the perm exclusion lifted as up to last year he was an A student but his father and I split and my son was hit by this. I did tell school but no support was given, my son became lippy at worse until this snap chat which he deeply regrets, not saying he should not be punished but to ruin his future is unfair, please help
Marj - 22-Jan-18 @ 7:20 AM
Sez - Your Question:
Can someone please tell me if Every Child Matters Policy still exists please. I'm having ongoing issues with my 10yr olds school regarding bullying and twice she has come home and threatens to kill herself , her test results are 0/100% , ive now got key workers involved too. As a single mother im finding this school non coperative and after an hours meeting with the head master yesterday he clearly stated that Every Child Matters policy was abolished years ago. Could someone please clarify thank you sarah

Our Response:
We have updated our article. However, by law, all state (not private) schools must have a behaviour policy in place that includes measures to prevent all forms of bullying among pupils. You can see more via the gov.uk link here . Also, if you feel you need to talk to someone objectively Familty Lives can help, please see link here. We hope you manage to resolve this situation. While ECM may not be being used officially, it still applies in theory.
WorkingWithKids - 1-Dec-17 @ 10:27 AM
Can someone please tell me if Every Child Matters Policy still exists please . I'm having ongoing issues with my 10yr olds school regarding bullying and twice she has come home and threatens to kill herself , her test results are 0/100% , ive now got key workers involved too. As a single mother im finding this school non coperative and after an hours meeting with the head master yesterday he clearly stated that Every Child Matters policy was abolished years ago . Could someone please clarify thank you sarah
Sez - 30-Nov-17 @ 5:17 AM
Our family has been caring for a child (now five and a half) for two and a half years. The local authority is putting her up for adoption and she has stated on numerous occasions that she does not want to leave us. We are unable to adopt her as our circumstances does not permit, but we are able to keep her on a long term fostering basis. Her advocate is doing nothing. Is there any advice please?
Very concerned - 20-Sep-17 @ 7:32 AM
Our foster children of 4 years have just been told their to go back home. And they sobbed they don't want to go the children wantto stay with us. Both children are academic and enjoy school. They've been told they have to change schools. I have accessed a advocate for them. Yet to meet.
JJ - 9-Mar-17 @ 12:37 PM
Please can you tell me the current legislation in the UK that covers parental involvement in schools?
Sue - 7-Feb-17 @ 5:19 PM
The Every Child Matters publication was archived in 2010 (2 government policies ago). Although the summary text above was correct when the item was first published in 2003, the document is only for reference and should not be considered to reflect current government policy or guidance.
TrueFactsFrappy - 6-Feb-17 @ 7:49 AM
i work in a law firm, helping families who needs child maintenace. this website helped me a llot thank you so much :)
Baby - 18-Jan-17 @ 12:50 PM
fsdtggdfyhdryhsgfdet - Your Question:
Thx for making this website I really like it and I learnt a new word child matter

Our Response:
We are very glad it helped you.
WorkingWithKids - 14-Jun-16 @ 12:20 PM
:) thank you for your help. i understand what 'Every Child Matters is now.
butterfly 1 - 13-Jun-16 @ 1:49 PM
thx for making this website I really like it and I learnt a new word child matter
fsdtggdfyhdryhsgfdet - 13-Jun-16 @ 1:49 PM
My 9 year old daughter found out this week who her new teacher and class mates are to be for the forthcoming year.I have no problem with her new teacher, what does concern me is that she has none of her friends in her class.In her latest school report it states 'has a good group of close friends'. Nowhere does it state in the report that these friends are a distraction or even caused any problems in school.I have never received anything from the school advising of any behaviour issues etc with my daughter. Since finding out she is crying herself to sleep at night and is easily upset when thinking of going to school, my daughter has certainly lost her sparkle. I have written to the schools asking for an explanation of their decision and, so far, I have not had the courtesy of a response, not even an acknowledgment of my email!! Can somebody tell me how this enforces the 'Every Child Matters' policy? Thanks
Unhappy - 5-Jul-15 @ 11:39 AM
I am very concerned with the following actions South Cave C of E Primary School have taken.To quote: "We are holding a school disco, as an additional reward, on Fri 3 July, for all Children who have not received more than 3 behaviour sanctions (yellow, blue or red cards). We will be giving out invitations on Wed l July. The disco for KS1 will take place from 6pm to 7pm and the disco for KS2 etc., etc." These children have already been reprimanded, (ages 5 and 6+).Now they are being ridiculed.Is this the way to encourage future good behaviour and trust? Some of these children come from difficult backgrounds and some are foster children. (just so you know my grandson was invited to the disco) I shall be pleased to hear your thoughts and comments on this.
Concerned - 2-Jul-15 @ 12:38 PM
Hi I have seen a local website promoting model experience days for teenagers aged 13-18 years old. Do the people who run this have to be CRB checked and can teenagers under 18 be photographed in this manner? Should the website state that anyone participating in these events have an adult present? I would welcome any advice on this TG
TG - 11-May-12 @ 8:36 PM
I find I cant learn enough about being a foster carer so the more I read the better. I value other carers knowledge and experience.
chris - 29-Mar-11 @ 2:45 PM
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice...
Title:
(never shown)
Firstname:
(never shown)
Surname:
(never shown)
Email:
(never shown)
Nickname:
(shown)
Comment:
Validate:
Enter word:
Topics
Latest Comments