Learning and Development
We are committed to Somerset being a Learning Organisation with evidenced based practice at the heart of our work with children and families.
We provide a range of high quality professional development opportunities for all our staff mapped to the Professional Capabilities Framework and the Knowledge and Skills Statements. We offer a progressive career pathway depending on whether you wish to step-up to a management role or to be a leader of advanced practice and take on more complex cases. Our Social Work Academy brings together all the training opportunities available to help our staff make the next steps in their career.
- The best quality training, support, mentoring and supervision to help Newly Qualified Social Workers (NQSWs) successfully complete their ASYE and build confidence in the transition from learning to practice
- Mentoring for social workers in the second year of practice
- A focus on quality regular reflective supervision for all staff
- Weekly area based CPD sessions led by our Consultant Social Workers
- Training for experienced staff to become accredited practice educators and supervisors of others
We are also proud to support a range of routes to qualification as a social worker from Apprenticeships to fast track programmes.
We support the Integrated Degree Apprenticeship route to qualification. This is a three year degree programme which is studied whilst also working as an apprentice for an employer. It is a practice-based route into social work and Apprentices receive a wage while studying for their degree. The programme incorporates academic and workplace learning and assessment and on successful completion participants will be eligible to apply to Social Work England for formal registration as a Social Worker.
Step Up to Social Work
Somerset County Council is proud to be part of the Step Up to Social Work programme, an intensive 14 month, full time programme for trainee Social Workers.
Trainees will work for SCC gaining hands on experience as well as academic learning, finishing the course with a postgraduate diploma in Social Work. Applicants may even be entitled to a bursary for the duration of the course, to find out more about this please visit: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/step-up-to-social-work-information-for-applicants
Students on the Step Up to social Programme will have to complete a minimum of 170 days placement within the teams to gain valuable experience in the field, other topics included in this course are
- Social work ethics and practice
- Child development
- Assessment of risk
- Legal framework
To apply or find out more please see the above link.
Somerset also offer opportunities to qualify through the National fast track programme Frontline where participants follow a practice-based route to qualification, working closely alongside a Consultant Social Worker who is dedicated to supporting a unit of four participants until they qualify. Participants also attend a five-week Summer Institute to prepare them before they start in the unit. Participants complete a post graduate diploma in their first year and study towards a master’s degree in their second year. For further information on the Frontline programme and how to apply please visit The Frontline
Effective support is essential in enabling the transition into practicing social work. Our managers recognise the impact of effective NQSW support (including protected time away for training and development) on both the quality of practice and the ability to retain staff who have the potential to become great social workers. That’s why Somerset has a fantastic ASYE year programme in place.
The programme will offer you:
- a protected case load of up to 50% in the first 6 months to allow you to access training and development opportunities
- a structured training programme tailored to NQSWs. Time out of work will be given to attend this training.
- workplace learning opportunities within your team including shadowing more experienced staff
- fortnightly supervision for the first 6 months of practice
- a learning and development plan
- observations and assessments
- Child Protection training.
For more information please read our ASYE information pack
To apply for this role please visit our ‘ready to join’ tab on the top for all current vacancies
Progression and Further Training
Social Workers will have the opportunity to apply for post-qualifying academic training, sponsored by the Council. Being surrounded by some fantastic Universities, we are able to work with them to provide opportunities for masters level post-graduate qualifications. As a practitioner there are opportunities to develop skills and knowledge to help you work as managers or advanced practitioners whilst you progress in your career.
Contact our Children & Families L & D Team
Telephone (01823) 357977