Latest news

June 2019

This months news:

Development funding available. See our sharepoint page (DCC only).

Academy staff are frequently asked if any funding is available for team or individual access to buy resources or access learning opportunities to meet needs identified by teams or in supervision and appraisal. This year we have set aside a proportion of the learning and development budget to enable staff and teams to bid for resources to support local learning. Up to £1000 per month will be available for team bids and up to £300 for individual bids. Teams and individuals may not bid for more than the maximum monthly amount within each financial year to ensure that the resource is spread evenly across services. Application forms can be found on the share-point page, link above 

Faculty of Succession

Lots of people take career breaks for a variety of reasons. The good thing about a social work degree is that it is generic and provides with lots of transferable skills. At times people take on non-social work roles within Children’s services and may not be aware that they can apply to re-register. When returning to social work after a break you need to check you meet the criteria to determine that you’re eligible to be employed again. Those criteria are:

1. Are you currently HCPC registered?

2. Have you registered your interest for a Return to Work programme?

3. Have you practiced in a statutory setting for over a year or more?

4. Do you have the right to work in the UK?

See our Re-Registration pages for more information here

Re-Registration pages- Children’s Academy

The Student Faculty

Information on the Social Work Ba & PG Dip OU bursary scheme:

We have closed for applications to the program for this year and are currently preparing for the Assessment centres to select the 5 candidates who will be offered a bursary to study to become registered Social Workers.

If you have missed out this year and fancy applying next year, take a look at the OU website to consider the program and what it offers in terms of learning and experience. Make sure that this is a regular discussion with your manager in supervision as part of your continuing professional development and ensure that you have the entry requirements. We advertise the program in April of each year.

OU Social Work Training

Step Up to Social Work

Devon County Council’s Children’s Academy has supported six places in the most recent cohort, and these students have now completed their training successfully.  They are now holders of a Post-Graduate Diploma in Social Work and are have started their ASYE program.  We are very proud of this group who have survived exams, deadlines, essays and gruelling assessment whilst excelling in their 14 month course.  They have had varied placement experiences including Permanence and Transition, Initial Response, Fostering and Disabled Children’s teams. They had a celebration day at Exeter Racecourse on the 7th March and we in the Academy say WELL DONE.

The next Cohort for Step-Up is open for applications has closed. This Post Graduate Diploma course is run and funded by the Department for Education. It is a very intense, full-time course that provides students with a Social Work Qualification on completion. We are part of the South West group covering 10 Local Authorities that supports up to 60 students. Devon will have 6 students and offer them 2 placements each through their course.

Step-up Program



ASYE Faculty

Cohort 21 and 22 are approaching their 9 month reviews and are all taking on some very rich learning. The latest group, cohort 23 includes our own OU graduates and are fast approaching their 6 month reviews.

Cohort 24 have just started in May and includes our recently completed Step-up students.

Professional Development Faculty

Social Work Practice Education Pathway;

The Introduction to Practice Learning (IPL) is aimed at Social Workers interested in supporting students as a Placement Supervisor. The next group of students won’t start until November 2019 so we will be running this 2 day course again at the end of the summer. The IPL workshops form the first level of the new Practice Education Pathway.  If you are interested please discuss with your manager and then apply with their support here;

For further details of supporting students follow this link Practice Education Pathway.

Practice Educator program; Our 11 experienced Social Workers who started the Graduate Certificate in Practice Education (GCPE) have now completed their training and submitted essays. They are waiting on the result of Module one. Some have already started working with their student and others are about to do so. Good Luck to you all.

Children’s Social Work BAME group;

BAME GROUP within the Social work Academy is in its early stages of development. Meetings take place every 3 months in different locations across the county to enable and encourage maximum involvement.

The Aims and Objectives of the group;
• To create a safe and supportive environment by means of having a confidential group supervision time to share their experiences.
• Advocacy for any BAME issues in particular with DCC.
• A reflective group to look at issues BAME SU’s/SW’s might face.
• To invite speakers/parties of interest to the group which are approached by all members to attend.
• To meet every three months with venue decided by the group.

Next meeting;

12 August 2019 11:00-15:00

 Exeter, County Hall – Room Coaver Sargent

 Darryl Freeman will be joining us for the session

Further information please contact Penn on

Also please see the South West Peninsula BAME Social Worker forum:

Are you a BAME social worker?

There is an on-going opportunity to discuss and share experiences for those social workers who identify as being from a Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic Group (BAME).  This can include the opportunity to explore challenges and common issues which can be faced by BAME social workers.  This is a regional Black, Asian & Minority Ethnic networking group for local authority social workers across the South West including Plymouth, Torbay, Cornwall and Devon.

Next meeting- Friday 14th June 2019 1000-1430 in Plymouth; Ballard House, Room 1C, West Hoe Road, Plymouth PL1 3BJ.

Please confirm your attendance by emailing

There is very limited free parking spaces, so please be prepared to pay to park. This will then later be refunded by your LA. 

Tea and coffee will be provided.

Childrens Social Work in the Media

There is lots of activity on Twitter this month including Social Work England who is working to launch in 2019 as the new regulator of the social work profession in England. The organisation will operate at an arm’s length from government in order to be adaptable to changing demands. Its principle roles will be:

• Developing and maintaining a regulation framework for social workers
• Setting professional and educational standards
• Promoting public confidence in the social work profession

Hemingway Design have been appointed to develop a visual identity to communicate the mission of Social Work England and convey its personality as an organisation. They have created a questionnaire to gather insight that will be used to inform the values and narrative behind the design.

Help shape the future of an organisation that will represent all social workers across the country. HERE:

Social Work England

BASW are calling for the experiences of Social Workers who work with children with Special Educational Needs; particularly your views and insight in this area of Social Work.

You can find out more here;

BASW SEND Research