The Social Emotional Evaluation or Child Assessment, is a tool or method used to evaluate children. It was originally developed to assist social workers in the evaluation of children but may be utilised by all helping professions working with children.
Assessing children is important as they do not always have the ability to express themselves. The Child Assessment (CA) is a child friendly method inspired by the system’s theory. The systems theory explains that the child is part of a system and that the systems present in the child’s life has a reciprocal effect on the child.
The aim of the CA is to evaluate the child’s experience of the different system’s in his/her life and to get a general picture of the child’s social and emotional functioning. The evaluation will focus on the following aspects:
- Family relationships including the child’s experience of the marital relationship
- School and peer relationships
- Any other relationships important to the child/ influencing the child
- Screening for trauma including abuse
- General evaluation of perceptual and motor functioning
The evaluation is usually conducted in a history free manner; this implies that the therapist does not have any background information on the child in order to do an objective evaluation. Objectivity during an evaluation ensures a sound and professional outcome.
The evaluation consists of:
- Two/three hour sessions with child
- One-hour session with the parents to retrieve collateral information
- One-hour feedback session to parents
- Retrieving collateral information from other important sources with the parents’ consent
Prior to the evaluation the parents/caregivers will be asked to complete a questionnaire concerning the child, please complete it and bring it along to the first session. Once the evaluation is concluded the therapist will give feedback to the parents. During this session recommendations will be given for example the necessity of therapy etc.
Please take note of the following:
I am under an ethical and legal obligation (Children’s Act & Sexual Offence Act) to report any disclosures and/or reasonable belief that a child is being abused to authorities.
- A socio-emotional evaluation does NOT constitute a care and contact investigation.
- No reports are provided to parents as standard practice after an evaluation.
- Reports are only provided to lawyers, welfare organization and/or other professionals.
- Reports need to be requested in writing by the requesting party (lawyer, social worker), clearly stating the purpose of the report. Reports are excluded in the tariff. Tariff of reports can be requested.