Social worker accreditation system plans revealed

Children and Families Minister Robert Goodwill has announced that five local authorities will be involved in the initial roll out of the National Assessment and Accreditation System (NAAS) for social workers.

The NAAS will raise the professional status of child and family social workers, ensuring they have the knowledge and skills they need to practice effectively, and forms part of the government’s reforms to children’s social work to ensure every child receives expert support and protection.

With Phase One of the project involving five local authorities, Bury, Leeds, Manchester, Oldham and Wigan, Phase Two will involve up to 20 authorities, and will promote a stronger focus on learning and development within the children’s social work sector profession.

Goodwill said: “Vulnerable children and families deserve the highest-quality care and support and that’s why we are driving forward reforms in children’s social work. The National Assessment and Accreditation System is a key part of this work to strengthen the skills and professional status of child and family social workers so they can provide this vital support to children who need it. We welcome the constructive feedback we have received and will work closely with the sector and local councils to support them as they start to introduce the new system in 2018.”

Steve Walker, Leeds City Council director for Children’s Services, said: “The National Assessment and Accreditation System has brought a welcome focus on the arrangements that local authorities have in place to set the conditions in which best practice can flourish. Leeds’ involvement in the accreditation system will provide us with an opportunity to review and strengthen our career development opportunities for social workers and enable us to recruit and retain great social workers, which is what children and young people need and deserve.”

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