Frontline ‘fast-track’ social work training scheme set to get HCPC approval

The fast-track social work training programme Frontline looks set to get ok from HCPC following second assessment

Picture credit: Monkey Business Images/Rex Features

Frontline’s fast-track training programme for children’s social workers looks set to be approved by the Health and Care Professions Council (HCPC) following a second assessment of its plans.

The training programme, which seeks to train graduates to be social workers, was set a number of conditions by the HCPC when it was first assessed back in March this year but is now set to get formal approval in early July.

A spokeswoman for the HCPC said: “Following a further visit to the Frontline social work programme, HCPC visitors are satisfied that the programme has met the conditions set and now meets our standards of education and training.

“The visitors will recommend the programme for approval by the Education and Training Committee at its next meeting on Wednesday 2 July, who will make the final approval decision.”

A Frontline spokesman said: “We look forward to the final decision from the Education and Training Committee, which will be taken at its next meeting.”

Frontline intends to take in its first cohort of would-be social workers at its five-week summer institute at the end of July.

After this, the students will enter a one-year work placement at the end of which they will qualify before spending another year practising as a newly qualified social worker.

The training scheme failed to get approval in March after the HCPC assessors concluded that while Frontline had met 26 of the HCPC standards conditions should be set on the remaining 31 standards.

Problem areas at the time included concerns about whether Frontline would equip social workers with the skills for adult social work.

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2 Responses to Frontline ‘fast-track’ social work training scheme set to get HCPC approval

  1. Alex June 11, 2014 at 4:12 pm #

    The issue I have here is that the incumbent Government has an obsession with leadership. There is an ideological belief that the ‘winners’ in life are the leaders, and they are therefore trying to attract individuals with leadership ambitions. Individual ambition is far from the paramount quality required to be a good social worker.

    Furthermore, valuing diversity (essential in our profession) recognises that individuals lacking power, the skills to gain it and individuals lacking the wish to have power, have skills and abilities that ‘natural leaders’ would lack. In my experience, invariably these are skills that are invaluable in social work, such as empathy. Emotional intelligence.

    Being primarily motivated by a wish to lead others translates, if it is the primary motivation, to a wish, in all likelihood, to have control/power over others. This is at odds with the values of social work. If a social worker’s primary motivation is to HELP people, and they have high levels of empathy and emotional intelligence, they are very much on the road to being a good social work leader. If their primary motivation is to LEAD people, they will very likely lack the empathic values of social work (can you embrace anti-oppressive practice if you are driven by the desire to lead, and by extension dominate/control others) and therefore, arguably, would not make the best social work leader.

  2. Jim Greer June 12, 2014 at 1:04 pm #

    To add to what Alex has said; The emphasis on recruiting graduates from Russell group Universities also raises serious issues about diversity of people entering the profession. Of course some people from ethnic minorities and poorer social class groups do graduate from these Universities but they are likely to be less well represented than they would be from a more diverse graduate group.
    At my University of Teesside we have excellent graduates from a range of social cultural backgrounds and we want them all to become social workers who do a good job for their service users. However, like Alex above I am concerned about the over-emphasis on leadership in what I have seen of Frontline publicity. We need to create good social workers- not create an elite.
    I think these ideological issues need to be addressed alongside the need for Frontline to meet the HCPC requirements.