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Community Care survey on social work training and career...

Rachael Wardell, Chair of the ADCS Workforce Development Policy Committee, said:

“In a job as challenging and complex as social work, professionals will always need training and support to develop the skills needed to make positive and enduring changes in children and families’ lives. Local authorities are doing lots of things to help create the conditions for great social work to flourish like ensuring social workers get the support they need, have manageable workloads, and receive regular, reflective supervision where they can raise issues about their work, including their professional development and training needs. There is good practice by local authorities in this space and this is evidenced in Ofsted inspection reports, but without clear routes to progression and opportunities for their development, social workers may feel like they have to leave their current job or the profession as a whole, and this is absolutely not what we would want. Without enough, high quality social workers who are valued and well supported in their role we as directors of children’s services cannot do our job which is to ensure all children in our local area thrive.

“We need to listen to our staff about what would make a difference to them and most directors are conscious of what they’d like to do more of in relation to the workforce challenges we face. However, the current financial context for local authorities is tough, since 2010 our funding has been halved but need for our help and support has not. A lack of resources in the system and rising need for statutory services is likely to be affecting the amount local authorities can spend on anything other than statutory services, despite us knowing that in the long term investing in the workforce is the right thing to do. We hope government heed the messages from the survey too.”


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