Practical learning: achieving excellence in the human services

January 23-25 2008 Edinburgh International Conference Centre

Key Capabilities in Child Care and Protection

Keywords: Social Work Education, Child Care and Protection, collaborating within and across agencies

Authors: Mrs Margaret Bruce (University of Dundee); Ms Helen Whincup (University of Dundee)

Not all qualified social workers will practice in the field of child care and protection but irrespective of their chosen area of practice, the concept that they all have a responsibility for protecting children runs through policy developments across the UK. An audit in 2005 evaluating the curricular content of Scottish social work qualifying programmes for the Scottish Institute for Excellence in Social Work Education (SIESWE) showed that child care and protection was covered within all Scottish universities, at all academic levels, but coverage varied in depth and approach. Staff from Dundee University Centre for Child Care and Protection have worked with SIESWE to establish a consistent approach to child care and protection within the new qualifying courses. Following extensive consultation with stakeholders an agreed set of Key Capabilities in Child Care and Protection have been developed. These will ensure that all social workers at the point of qualifying, can demonstrate their knowledge, skills and understanding in relation to child care and protection. These are aligned with, and complement existing standards and frameworks.

Key Capabilities in Child Care and Protection (Scottish Executive, 2006) are now a requirement in all Scottish qualifying social work programmes and work is ongoing to track and enhance their implementation. Although developed in Scotland, Key Capabilties could be integrated in courses across the UK and beyond.

In this paper we will present Key Capabilities and discuss some of the emerging education and practice issues such as:

This project has engaged with a number of challenging issues about the social work role with regard to children and vulnerable groups on a wider level. Educational and practice issues have emerged which will be of interest to practitioners, educators and policy makers. These include the roles and responsibilities of all social workers towards children, and the extent to which the incorporation of understanding about child care and protection can enhance work with adult service users.

Date: Wednesday 23 January 2008, 4.00-4.30

Venue: Ochil One

Return to list of abstracts

Organised by the Institute for Research and Innovation in Social Services in association with PEPE (Practical Experiences in Professional Education).