Child protection reform - service delivery, multi-agency arrangements and the future of the social work profession

Location: London
Organiser: Westminster Education Forum

Timed to follow the publication of a National Audit Office (NAO) report into the delivery of child protection services, expected in Autumn 2016, this seminar will bring together key stakeholders from across the education and health sectors, as well as local government, to consider latest policy priorities for the safeguarding of children.

Following the publication of the Wood Report in March 2016, which reviewed the role and functions of Local Safeguarding Children Boards (LSCBs), delegates at this timely seminar will discuss the implementation of the key recommendations of the report, recently accepted by Government, such as requiring each area to publish a plan detailing how multi-agency arrangements will be improved, as well as the abolition of Serious Case Reviews and introduction of a national learning framework for inquiries.

They will also consider measures to prevent, investigate and help the victims of child sexual abuse, in light of a series of reports on the topic due to be released by the Children’s Commissioner in 2016.

Further sessions will examine steps to reform children’s social work, following the introduction of a new regulatory body for social workers to replace the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC). Delegates will also assess the outcomes of an Education Select Committee inquiry into children’s social work, which is examining key issues concerning recruitment, retention and training within the profession, as well as reflect on the impact to date of attempts to increase graduate recruitment such as Frontline, in light of government plans to significantly increase funding for new routes into social work.

We are delighted that Ashley McDougall, Director, Local Government, Health and Education, National Audit Office has agreed to deliver a keynote address at this seminar.

At this early stage Samantha Baron, Head of Social Work, Manchester Metropolitan University; Melissa Caslake, Director of Family Services, Westminster City Council; Josh MacAlister, Chief Executive, Frontline; Graham Ritchie, Principal Policy Advisor, Office of the Children's Commissioner and Judith Russ, Head of Children’s Safeguarding, Derby City Council have also agreed to speak. 

Baroness Tyler of Enfield, Chair, Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service (Cafcass) has kindly agreed to chair at this conference. is an online service designed to support and encourage parents and carers of children aged 5-19, with a collection of videos addressing day-to-day questions and concerns spanning wellbeing, behaviour and learning.