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North East Region Update September 2016

Update from the North East region for the ADCS Council of Reference

The North East continues to undergo a significant period of change at both director and assistant director level.

The changes can be seen below:

  • Rachael Shimmin has left her role as DCS/DASS at Durham to become Chief Executive in Buckinghamshire. Durham has split back the departments into separate children and adult directorates. Margaret Whellans, former DCS in Gateshead, is the interim DCS pending a permanent appointment
  • Redcar & Cleveland Council has also split back directorates. Barbara Shaw is now DCS only
  • Richenda Broad will retire from Middlesbrough Council at the end of September. Eleni Ioannides has been appointed as the interim DCS pending a permanent appointment.
  • Jane Humphreys will retire from Stockton Council at the end of the year. Current Assistant Director, Martin Gray, will become DCS as of 1 January 2017.

Teaching partnership

The first meeting of the North East social work teaching partnership has taken place. The partnership is a collaboration between the 12 North East LAs and five Higher Education Institutions (HEIs). The initial key areas of focus are on placements and admissions.


The region welcomed Andrew Christie, Chair of the Adoption Leadership Board, in his capacity as the region’s sponsor. The key focus of the visit was on adoption support.

Workforce development

A new regional workforce development committee has been established, chaired by Suzanne Joyner, Darlington. The key focus of the group will be on assessment and accreditation, agency social worker rates, apprenticeships and staff recruitment and retention.

Step up to Social Work

The North East will again apply for Step up to Social Work after a positive first cohort in the region.

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