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Statutory placement expectation in new social work course standards proposed for England

Social Work England is consulting on the Qualifying and Educational Standards

Published by Professional Social Work magazine – 22 February 2019

Social work courses will be expected to offer students at least one statutory placement under proposals tabled by new regulator Social Work England.

The proposed Qualifying Education and Training Standards, which would come into force in 2020 if approved, also place an expectation that courses will involve people with lived experience and social work employers in the design and monitoring of their curriculums.

Under the proposals, every course will be expected to have a ‘lead social worker’ in place who is suitably qualified and is on the social work register. The lead will hold overall professional responsibility for the course. Practice educators will be expected to undertake regulator training and have relevant knowledge, skills and experience.

Social Work England, which is due to take over regulation of the profession from the HCPC, is consulting on the proposals alongside a new set of professional standards for social workers and a set of rules underpinning fitness to practise processes. 

BASW chief executive Ruth Allen told PSW: “It’s very positive to see proposals for a much stronger and clearer role for people with lived experience in social work education. The proposals on placements and greater roles for employers need to be carefully looked at and views sought from a range of perspectives.

“The proposals call for practice educators to undertake regular training. BASW has been working with a range of partners to update the framework for the Practice Educator Professional Standards and we look forward to working with Social Work England on this vital area of social work education.”

The consultation is open until 1 May 2019. Full details can be viewed here.

This article is published by Professional Social work magazine which provides a platform for a range of perspectives across the social work sector. It does not necessarily reflect the views of the British Association of Social Workers.