College of Social Work defends early membership figures

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The College of Social Work has failed to meet its aspiration of signing up 6,000 fee-paying members by April.

Just over 1,000 social workers have formally signed up to the College since its free membership trial ended on 1 April. This is out of a pool of roughly 9,600 prospective and trial members, who had registered their interest by 31 March.

The College told Community Care in January that it hoped to sign up 6,000 people by April. A spokeswoman today said this had never been an official target.

She said the current figure of 1,018 put the College on track to reach its target of 12,000 paying members by this time next year.

The College aims to sign up 31,000 social workers – a third of all those registered in England – by March 2015. The fees are £60 for employed practitioners and £90 for independent social workers.

Last month, a poll of 313 visitors to Community Care found 16.6% had already joined the College as fee-paying members, 26.5% were planning to join and 56.9% had no intention of signing up. 

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