Reflective supervision ‘impacting positively’ on social work in ‘good’ council

'Regular' supervision and 'good access' to managers found in London borough


Social workers in Camden are benefitting from reflective supervision that impacts positively on their work with children and families, a focused visit by Ofsted inspectors found.

The council, rated ‘good’ in a full inspection last year, was praised for giving staff access “to a wide range of induction and training opportunities”, and social workers reported being “supported and encouraged” to develop.

Ofsted also said staff receive “regular, reflective supervision and good access to managers, including senior managers”.

“Inspectors saw examples of reflective supervision impacting positively on the work that social workers are undertaking with children and their families,” the report said.

“Social workers particularly value the monthly reflective practice sessions, which enhance their understanding of how they can improve outcomes for children.”

‘Timely and thorough’ investigations

Inspectors found that child protection investigations were timely and thorough, and children and families experiencing domestic abuse had access to a broad range of intervention and support services.

“Thresholds are appropriate and well embedded in practice. Child protection concerns are quickly identified. When appropriate, they progress to timely strategy discussions. These decisions are mostly well-recorded and the planned interventions to safeguard children are clear,” inspectors said.

Leadership was praised for a continued commitment to sustaining the quality of services following the previous inspection, and leaders “know the service well”, Ofsted said.

It warned that, in a small minority of cases, the quality of referrals from partner agencies were not clear, and some supervision recorded did not provide clarity on future actions required.

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One Response to Reflective supervision ‘impacting positively’ on social work in ‘good’ council

  1. Ruth Cartwright June 20, 2018 at 6:26 pm #

    Reflective supervision is absolutely essential to support a social worker and ensure continued good practice. The chance to consider your activities and work with someone who has experience and wisdom an also to look at the impact the work is having upon you is important. It is so sad to see that it has fallen by the wayside in many places with supervision instead focusing on giving the social worker direction about managing cases. There are also issues about supervisors and managers from professions other than social work and how equipped they are to offer the right sort of supervision and support – many are, but some are not. When I was managing a social work team my view was that supervision, including time for reflection and development, was the most important part of my job.