Ed Balls: Children’s directors to receive one-to-one coaching

Directors of children’s services will be sent on three-day residential courses and receive one-on-one coaching sessions as part of a national leadership development programme.

Children’s secretary Ed Balls said he hoped the 12-month programme, due to be launched this autumn, would foster the “dynamic leadership” required within the sector.

Peer support

An initial intake of 24 DCSs will be given executive coaching, a service often utilised by managing directors of large companies, and peer support from leaders in other local authorities.

Balls said he expected every DCS across the country would eventually undertake the training, which will also be open to senior managers hoping to earn promotion to the role.

The scheme, which is being led by the National College for School Leadership, is intended to match the success in achieving strong leadership in schools over the last ten years, according to the children’s secretary.

Prospective directors “require experience in several areas”

Balls added that he wanted all future children’s directors to “gain experience in areas outside their own specialism before they are appointed”.

The programme was announced last month alongside the creation of a Social Work Taskforce, which will examine the long-term future of the profession.

The Association of Directors of Children’s Services, along with the Children’s Workforce Development Council, will also help devise the training.

ADCS president Maggie Atkinson said it would address the “unique” challenges of the role.

Related articles

Narrowing the Gap report calls for more leadership support in children’s services

External information

Association of Directors of Children’s Services

Children’s Workforce Development Council

National College for School Leadership

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