Latest news

Autumn 2019

This months news:

The benefits of Social Work Academies:

Community Care have reported on the recent work of Dame Lorna Boreland-Kelly in her review of the success of Social Work Academies in Local Authority Social Work. We are proud to have been one of the first of these in the UK, with the grounding work completed and sustained by Nigel Stopard, Head of DCC’s Children’s Social Care Academy. Read all about it here:

From blanket approach to tailored learning: how academies have changed social work training

Update on the transfer of regulation to Social Work England;

On Monday 2 December 2019, Social Work England will take over from the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) as the new regulator.

In preparation for the announcement, significant progress has been made to ensure a smooth and safe transition for social workers. Social Work England will become the new regulator later this year subject to this successful development continuing.

You do not need to anything as the transfer will be automatic for everyone on the Register.

Until 2 December 2019, the HCPC will continue to be your regulator. If you wish to raise a concern or check any details on your registration and fitness to practise status, please contact us as you normally would.

If you have any questions about the transfer, please refer to the  Frequently Asked Questions.

For more information on Social Work England, please explore their website. They have a Social Workers hub also here


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

Step-up to Social Work:

We have been involved in the selection of students for the Step-Up to Social Work Scheme for the second time and have 6 students in this cohort (6). The program commences in early January and is a Post Graduate Diploma route into Social Work.

Step-up Program


The Open University Bursary Scheme:

Lots of activity this summer with placements and courses ending;

  • Our 3rd year Ba OU students have completed their program and are now waiting for their results at the end of October. Then they will be preparing for their ASYE program in December.
  • The 2nd year Ba students returned in recent weeks from their first placements in Adults services and we said goodbye to the 2nd years from adults who were placed across children’s services.
  • Our first year Ba students will be preparing for their first placement in February 2020.
  • The PG Dip in Social Work students from cohort #1 have completed and start their ASYE program in now.
  • Cohort #2 of the PG Dip have completed their first placements and are preparing for their next placements due to start in November.
  • We have 5 new students on the bursary program starting their programs. 2 Ba students will start the course in November and 3 PG Dip candidates will start in January

ASYE Faculty

ohort 21 are submitting their ASYE portfolio’s this month, September), Cohort 22 are fast approaching their final reviews and cohort 23 includes our own OU graduates and are approaching their 9 month reviews.

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

Cohort 25 is starting next week at the time of writing this (September) and cohort 26 in early December. For the induction program please look at the ASYE faculty pages on the website. (Dates, program guide and venues)

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 start in November so Herbi and Penn delivered the 2 day course again on the 18th & 20th September. These staff are now raring to go with their students in the coming academic year.

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 Two. With their mentors from the Academy they are reflecting on their experience of the program and of working as a Practice Educator for the first time.

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;

30 Oct at Estuary House Newton Abbot.


Parking is quite challenging so can people arrive by 12pm please.

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.

Plymouth University celebrating Black History Month;

Plymouth University have extended an invitation to DCC staff, (Herbi and Penn are going along to sample the food):

‘We are delighted to be hosting a wide-range of events this year in partnerships with the Students Union and various local community groups.

The full programme of events is available through our dedicated Black History month website, but here are some highlights:

  •  International Fashion Show – Saturday 12th October, 4pm-7pm. An opportunity to celebrate with our diverse local community as they model national dress from around the world
  • OurTable, Thursday 24th October, 6pm-8pm. A brand-new community dining event to meet new people and taste cuisine from around the world.
  • Celebrating Black Minds in Mental Health, Friday 4th October, 10am-4pm. Featuring a series of talks on the contributions and experiences of black persons, from activists and academics to psychologists and writers, on our current understanding of mental health.

 All of the above events are FREE of charge and open to staff, students and the general public; it would be great to see you there!’


University of Plymouth

Equality, Diversity & Inclusion Team


Childrens Social Work in the Media