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Professor Aidan

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1 Professor Aidan Worsley @aidanworsley


3  Great social work practitioners/educators – with a breadth of experience  Great values -awareness of social justice and social work values  Great teams - supportive environments and strong supervision  Great partnerships – effective, responsive  Very significant policy/ economic challenges – but amidst all this clamour SW endures…


5  Closed upon recruitment of Chief Social Workers  Produced important documents around CPD, Partnerships, SW Education, Admissions  Set in motion The College of Social Work  ASYE (Assessed and Supported Year in Employment) with TCSW – builds upon NQSW, some ‘requirements’ placed upon employers around supervision, workload relief etc.



8  President of ADCS  Hackney model  ‘crap social workers’  Teaching background  LA senior management / Hackney/ London voice dominant


10  The Professional Capabilities Framework  Underlined generic curriculum  Tougher Admissions requirements/ processes  Additional curriculum guidance  Assessed Readiness for Direct Practice  New placement structure and holistic assessment  Plus compliance with QAA, HCPC (SETS/SOPS) and internal validation  Began September 2013 – UG students are literally on their first placement


12  Compression and the DfE  Step Up to Social Work  Frontline (Summer 14)  Lamb and the DH  Baroness Tyler Review  Mental Health ‘Frontline’ called Think Ahead WHY?




16  “I have been told not to accommodate children as this will cost too much and we do not have the placements for them. I have also been told not to take cases to child protection as there are no social workers to take the case.”  “Ofsted observed the number of child protection cases was very high so the [local authority] reduced the number of child protection plans.”  “I had a child who was repeatedly neglected with other professionals raising concerns. However, child protection thresholds were not met and the child was deemed a child in need.”





21  Evidence suggests supply of social workers will not equal demand until 2022  But, LAs preferring to employ temps to NQSWs  13 LAs carrying 50+ vacancies, 4 carrying 100+ and 2 carrying 200+ ◦ Wokingham/ City of London/ Cheshire West/ Luton all in top 10  Older workers leaving  70% say caseloads unmanageable  Emphasis on qualifying training incongruent with data



24  Curriculum guidance confused and inadequate  Need to ‘increase’ calibre of entrants and lower numbers  Extend Step-Up and Frontline programmes (he notes retention as key indicator)  Specialisation of qualifying training – final years focus on C&F  Workbased non-graduate qualification for social care  Detach from HCPC  Toughen Endorsement…

25 …there is nothing here about the quality of teaching (which, regrettably, is not observed), the entry calibre of students, the robustness of examination or other assessment systems, or the extent to which new graduates are ready for employment. And it is impossible to believe that the quality of placement provision can be assessed on a day visit to the university

26  Crushingly anecdotal  Selective evidence undermines impact  Plain wrong in some areas  But much food for thought  Very well promoted  Supported by Gove- but perhaps not Morgan/ the DfE?  HCPC – enshrined in legislation  But the main problem…



29  See the social worker as a practitioner, a professional and as a social scientist  Fewer, better, PG students – 300+ (3 Bs)  Better placements, better relationships – more cash  Retain genericism (‘social work lite’ routes critiqued)  More research skills for practitioners, more IPL  Merge HCPC/ TCSW regulatory function – keep both  ASYE becomes Licence to Practice/ Revalidation  Phase out UG bursaries

30  Evidential approach, less combative  Received hardly any press coverage  Losing a key demographic – mature UG student  CPD in focus  Money in focus- but unrealistic  Wary of ‘quick fix’ of fast track routes


32  PEPS (PE Professional Standards) ◦ Vital importance of the PVI sector  Innovation, Capacity, Reflecting workforce  Placement funding - £20 a day ◦ The dangers of driving down PE fees  Bursaries – PG direction, £18m savings already ◦ Placement staff vital, partnership & SWET networking, conflict...  So many avenues for division

33  CPD ◦ Removal of PQ framework but no replacement ◦ Many alternatives developed - filling vacuum ◦ Practice Educators – parallels with AMHPs ◦ Why should it not all sit in an academic framework?  Knowledge & Skills Statements x 2 ◦ Sets out what Children's and Adults social workers need to know ◦ Tested (by whom?) for ‘approved status’ at end of ASYE ◦ Separate one for Adults (LR)  4 x DOs, 2 written pieces, several work products, TCSW role

34  Complex and emerging picture – offering signposts – more change to come  DfE and DH playing punch bag with social work and SW education? Can they find a compromise? Institutionalising divisions  No chance to implement and evaluate change ◦ Change ideological rather than evidence based

35  Social work as a profession needs to take back control of these scenarios- engage in these debates  Desperate need for a renewed emphasis and funding for CPD – but is it nil sum?  Need to strive for the production of excellent social workers together – in partnership  Educating the profession  Remembering why we are doing this! - that we are still providing a strong service that protects children, their families and adults

36 @aidanworsley

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