NQSWs in Scotland fall short on training

Many newly qualified social workers in Scotland are failing to meet training requirements.

Many newly qualified social workers in Scotland are failing to meet training requirements.

A report by the Scottish Social Services Council found 31% of NQSWs had not completed the required number of training days, and 37% of individual development records failed to demonstrate any reflective practice.

The British Association of Social Workers said the shortfall was due to a lack of support from supervisors and managers.

“I am concerned about the support being given to some NQSWs and the time and help they are getting in developing healthy working practices; specifically time for reflective and analytical time with a supervisor or mentor,” said Ruth Stark, professional officer for BASW in Scotland.

NQSWs in Scotland must complete 24 days or 144 hours of post-registration training and learning within a year of qualifying in order to renew their registration. At least five days or 30 hours of this must involve working with vulnerable groups.

But the SSSC found only 69% of NQSWs had completed the full 24 days, and some of those who had had failed to spend five of those on safeguarding.

The regulator analysed a sample of 106 records of achievement, a document detailing all learning activities submitted by NQSWs between April and November 2009.

It found many NQSWs simply described learning and supervision activities rather than analysing them and demonstrating how they had helped reflection or professional development.

The report also found a quarter of managers admitted knowing “very little” about PRTL requirements.

“It might be reasonable to expect that managers of qualified social workers would have had at least a working knowledge about its purpose,” it stated.

Stark said this showed the lack of support affected social workers at every level.

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