SCIE opinion - 1 March 2011

Any comments on this opinion? Please email media@scie.org.uk

Photograph of Patricia Kearney

Focus on social work

Patricia Kearney, Head of Family & Children Services

The first of three on social work for March 2011

Each month, SCIE is highlighting one particular aspect of social care. March has a focus on social work. My past career has been in both adults and children's services and I know how easy it can be to forget that families use both types of services. So social workers, wherever they're based, often work with adults as well as children and young people.  Why not look at our Social Care TV film about social workers in Hull who are embracing personalisation?

The Social Work Reform Board has been keen to promote this understanding, developing a Professional Capabilities Framework as an 'overarching' structure for social workers in all settings and at all stages of their career.  The skills we learn in direct social work practice, and the values and knowledge we apply there, are ones we should be able to draw on for the rest of our professional lives. The Board also has strong links with Professor Eileen Munro and her team. They are leading a review of front-line child protection.  Our contribution to this debate is the SCIE model on case reviews in child protection.

Last December, at a conference, SCIE staff were approached by three newly-qualified social workers. They used our resources when they were students, they've joined The College of Social Work and they're keen to develop their careers with training and other forms of development. So there's plenty of enthusiasm out there. We want to support all social workers, managers, commissioners and anyone who works alongside social workers. It's a challenging and interesting career, where analytical skills are needed along with good engagement with people. This helps deal with tough situations that don't have easy answers.

Watch out for announcements this month about social work on our site, twitter, plus our facebook page and elsewhere. We've almost got 300 twitter followers, by the way. And 220 like what we're doing on facebook.

Social workers page

Go to our social workers page for: