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"For many parents the pain of separation or divorce makes it impossible for them to put aside their differences and think about what’s best for their children. What these programmes do is make parents more aware of the upset they may be causing their children, often without realising it. The programmes provide practical ways of making post-separation parenting joint, and constructively shared."


About SPIP

What is SPIP?

  • spipThe Separated Parent Information Programme (SPIP) is a course focused on the needs of children in families that are going through or have been through separation or divorce. This is not a course about day to day ‘parenting skills’. It is about recognising the damage that conflict over separation issues can do to children.

Who can attend the SPIP course?

  • Couples including LBGT couples and their new partners or grandparents ordered by the courts at their First Directions Hearing (FDHR)
  • All parents, new partners and grandparents involved in separation who cannot agree child issues who wish to learn more about the dangers of parental conflict and its impact on family life.
  • Parties attend separately.

What does the course cover?

  • The effect on children of parental conflict in separation
  • The emotional and parenting process in separation
  • Focuses on improved communication between parties
  • Supporting the children in the middle
  • Learning to take responsibility for yourself not for others
  • Dispute resolution e.g. Mediation and next steps
  • Parents will be provided with helpful information, web site addresses, contact details and information about mediation and next steps

For further information about SPIP and additional resources please see Cafcass leaflets and resources for both adults and young people


  • Family disputes that are resolved through mediation are cheaper, quicker and according to academic research, less acrimonious than those that are settled through the courts."

    National Audit Office 2/3/07

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