Employed social workers and training

1. How many children’s social workers are employed within the County Council (agency & permanent)

– 212 contracted Social Workers and there are 77 Agency social workers

2. Do you provide training for children’s social workers to understand how to deal with online/non-contact child sexual exploitation and abuse

Yes

a. If so, how is this training delivered? (Online, face to face, etc)

Face to face training has been delivered via an online platform (zoom) this year due to Covid-19

b. If so, is this in-house or outsourced?

Outsourced

c. What are the costs of delivering the training per person or per course if delivered to groups (please specify size of group if relevant)

A disclosure of this costing detail would cause difficulties for the council when negotiating any future training for council employees.  Whilst we acknowledge the need for transparency, it is not in the public interest to prejudice the commercial arrangements or the training of council employees.  This information is therefore exempt from disclosure pursuant to s.43 of the Freedom of Information Act 2000.

d. Is it mandatory for children’s social workers? If not, is it mandatory to children’s social workers, working in a specific area i.e. child protection?

The Group 3 Core Safeguarding and Child Protection course includes all aspects of child abuse. Newly qualified social workers joining DCC must do The Group 3 course. Keeping Children Safe in a Digital World course is not mandatory although recommended for newly qualified social workers as part of their induction programme.

e. How many children’s social workers have undertaken this training, if it is provided?

Group 3 Core – 34 social workers
Keeping Children Safe in a Digital World (face to face training) – Sep 2018 to December 2020
13 social workers
TOTAL = 47

3. Do you provide training for children’s social workers to understand how to deal with physical/contact child sexual exploitation and abuse?

Yes

a. If so, how is this training delivered? (Online, face to face, etc)

Face to face training has been delivered via an online platform (zoom) this year due to Covid-19

b. If so, is this in-house or outsourced?

Outsourced

c. What are the costs of delivering the training per person or per course if delivered to groups (please specify size of group if relevant)

A disclosure of this costing detail would cause difficulties for the council when negotiating any future training for council employees.  Whilst we acknowledge the need for transparency, it is not in the public interest to prejudice the commercial arrangements or the training of council employees.  This information is therefore exempt from disclosure pursuant to s.43 of the Freedom of Information Act 2000.

d. Is it mandatory for children’s social workers? If not, is it mandatory to children’s social workers, working in a specific area i.e. child protection?

The Group 3 Core Safeguarding and Child Protection course includes all aspects of child abuse, including physical and sexual. Newly qualified social workers joining DCC must do this course. Specific Sexual Abuse/Sexual Exploitation Training course is not mandatory although recommended for newly qualified social workers as part of their induction programme.

e. How many children’s social workers have undertaken this training, if it is provided?

Group 3 Core – 34 social workers
Specific Sexual Abuse/Sexual Exploitation Training – 35 social workers
TOTAL = 69

4. What mandatory training is provided to children’s social workers and how frequently (if at all) do social workers need to repeat this?

This is currently under development

 

5. On a year by year basis, over the last 5 years, how many cases have you dealt with where child sexual exploitation and/or abuse was a factor?

  Number of children who had a factor of Child Sexual Exploitation identified throughout the assessment process (as defined by CIN Census)
2015-16 287
2016-17 234
2017-18 205
2018-19 231
2019-20* 75

*As requested by DfE, DCC only included Single Assessments in 2020 return, previous years have also included re-assessments on open cases as it was not possible to separate those in previous social care case management system but is in current system
If you include all assessments there were 115 in 2019-20

6. On a year by year basis, over the last 5 years, how many cases have you dealt with where online child sexual exploitation and/or abuse was a factor?

Devon County Council does not hold a central record of this information.   To therefore extract this information would require a review of case files would be required by the service. (1,032 cases in total over the last 5 years – if each case takes 2 mins to review this would total 34.4 hours).  This is in excess of the appropriate time limit of 18 hours and therefore, pursuant to s.12 of the Freedom of Information Act we are not obliged to provide this information.