Information for Newly Qualified Social Workers (NQSWs)

The Academy offers social workers who are newly qualified a positive and strong induction into statutory children’s social work, promoting the development in the quality, consistency and effectiveness of social work practice to ensure that children’s outcomes are positive.

We want NQSWs to become confident in the work they deliver through a combination of the high levels of challenge and a highly supportive network around them to enable them to do their job well!

NQSWs will feel valued and part of Coventry Children’s Services, with 6 months based within the Academy while spending time with host teams, shadowing practice and developing a good understanding of the practice realities in Coventry.

The learning environment of the Academy will afford NQSWs high levels of supervision, particularly at the early stages, and an individual development plan during their Assessed and Supported Year in Employment (ASYE).

Newly Qualified Social Workers will also be able to connect with the West Midlands Teaching Partnership, Research in Practice, and receive coaching, mentoring and support through the Social Work Academy Team in order to assist them in their transition from student to professional practice. 

On our ASYE programme there are 24 academy places available with two entry points during the year. NQSWs will be supported over their ASYE with dedicated time in the Academy with the experienced team, joint working with other social workers and outreach from the Academy Team when NQSWs transition into their teams.

The year will be exciting and challenging, with a new and revolutionary approach to learning and development. The Academy will enable NQSWs to mature from students into safe, skilful and knowledgeable social work practitioners, who will feel confident in both their practice and decision making. NQSWs are encouraged to continue their development beyond the Academy and both role model and share best practice across the wider workforce.

We have a great offer for our NQSWs

  • We will assure high levels of supervision at early stages, promoting critical reflective practice which supports judgement and decision making and promotes emotional resilience.
  • We will ensure that NQSW feel part of Coventry Children’s Services, and are able to build an empowering supportive network around them to deliver “good” social work.
  • We will provide 6 months of core social work learning and professional development from social workers, Practice Educators and University partners.
  • These 6 months will provide NQSWs reflective time to explore the work they shadow in their host teams to consider the process and interventions involved, relevant research, theories and models whilst critically reflecting upon the impact of their interventions for the children and families.
  • Support and training in Signs of Safety methodologies with families, so that this practice naturally informs assessments and interventions with children and families.
  • Offer NQSW opportunities to shadow and jointly work with children living in complex situations including children who are Looked After Children, subject to child protection plans and child in need plans, in order to prepare NQSWs for more independent practice as their experience grows.
  • Enable practitioners to keep up to date with research and developments through our links with the West Midlands Teaching Partnership.
  • Outreach support from the Academy for months 7-12 when NQSWs are settling into their team.
  • We will ensure social workers feel confident in their decision making, and that their decision making for children is not in isolation and is informed through research, theories and practice experience and wisdom with the children’s best interests in mind.

Learning and development for NQSWs

The curriculum ensures:

  • A comprehensive understanding and embedding of Children’s Services core standards to facilitate best practice
  • Observations of practice and valuable feedback
  • Discussions and feedback on submitted written work
  • Group supervisions and learning from each other and experienced practitioners
  • Shadowing experienced social workers and practitioners
  • Reflecting on what you could have done differently
  • Nationally recognised external speakers
  • Individual mentoring

Workshops on key topics including:

  • The journey of the child
  • Undertaking and writing analytical assessments
  • Resilience, Emotional intelligence and Stress Management
  • Direct work with children - The Voice of the Child
  • Signs of Safety
  • Performance, statutory indicators and quality assurance
  • Domestic Abuse and working with males
  • Working with children who have been sexually exploited

Social Work Academy

Address: PO Box 15
Council House
Earl Street

Telephone: 024 7697 5504