Developing social work training
17 October 2013
Cardiff is one of four Welsh universities to work with the Care Council to develop one of the UK's most comprehensive training initiatives for qualified social workers.
The Care Council will spend £1.8m over the next six years on raising the professionalism of social work practice in Wales to a new level. The initiative will be made up of three new training and development programmes for experienced, senior and consultant social workers.
The Care Council has commissioned an alliance of four universities in Wales to deliver the programmes. Cardiff University's School of Social Sciences will take the lead, with the rest of the group made up of the universities of Swansea, Bangor and Glyndwr.
Professor Malcolm Williams, Director of the School of Social Sciences said: "Cardiff School of Social Sciences has a long tradition of providing both qualifying and post-qualifying social work education and training and is very pleased to use this experience and expertise in the service of the continuing professional development of social workers throughout Wales.
"In leading on the development and delivery of these programmes, in alliance with Bangor, Glyndwr and Swansea universities, Cardiff University demonstrates its commitment both to supporting the work of the Welsh Government and the Care Council for Wales and to improving social work practice in Wales."
The training and development programmes will be important in supporting a new career structure for social workers in Wales and equipping them to provide excellent frontline practice.
Under the banner of the Care Council's Continuing Professional Education and Learning (CPEL) framework, the new training and development programmes will help social workers deliver the Welsh Government's vision for citizen-centred services and greater professionalism of the workforce. Programmes for newly-qualified social workers in Wales have already been launched.
The new programmes will involve on-line study, face-to-face teaching and local study groups.
Rhian Huws Williams, Care Council Chief Executive, said: "This is a major development in the training and development of all social workers in Wales. It is something we've been working on with partners for the past two years. These programmes will support social workers in developing excellent practice, whatever their role, and enhancing their professionalism. They will also help prepare them deliver the Welsh Government vision for citizen-centred services.
"Critically, the new programmes ensure all social workers in Wales have access to a consistent standard of learning, relevant to their role. They will provide practitioners with the training they need as they progress to different levels in their careers.
"We plan to start the programmes for experienced practitioners and senior social workers in 2014, with the consultant social worker programme following in 2015. From there on, the programmes will be delivered annually, with at least 100 places a year being available. Social workers, employers and people using services have been, and will continue to be, involved in further developments. All the programmes will also be rigorously evaluated to ensure they remain fit for purpose, making a positive difference and delivering the expected outcomes," she added.