Almost fifteen thousand social workers have renewed their registration in the first two weeks of the process, but almost three-quarters are still to meet the requirement to upload one piece of CPD to keep their registration.
Social Work England said 14.8% of registrants – 14,770 – had renewed since the process opened on 1 September. There has also been a notable increase in the proportion who have uploaded CPD, from 21.7% on 25 August to 27.1%, but that leaves a substantial majority who have not, 12 weeks out from the renewal deadline.
How CPD rate has crept up
15 July: 17.7% of registrants
4 August: 19.4%
25 August: 21.7%
11 September: 27.1%
The regulator said it was happy with the figures but urged practitioners to upload their CPD as soon as possible – which requires the prior activation of an online account with Social Work England – and also encouraged people to renew well before the 30 November deadline.
“We’re really pleased that 14,770 social workers have applied to renew their registration with us in the first ten days,” said Sarah Blackmore, the regulator’s executive director of strategy, policy and engagement.
‘CPD is a requirement’
“The renewals deadline is 30 November but we are asking people to renew as soon as possible, as this allows extra time to sort out any issues.”
She said anyone who renewed before 25 September could pay the £90 fee by director in two equal instalments, in October and April. Those who renew after that point will have to pay in full by card, unless they already have a direct debit with Social Work England.
On CPD, Blackmore said: “It is essential that you upload some continuing professional development (CPD) before 30 November to meet the professional standards. Over 27% of social workers (27,015) have now uploaded almost 80,000 pieces of CPD, which again is very positive. I would urge the remainder of social workers to upload CPD as soon as they can…Social workers need to be very clear that although they can upload their CPD after their renewal application, their application will not be successful if valid CPD is not uploaded by 30 November. CPD is a requirement of registration.”
She pointed to a video and guidance that Social Work England has provided to support practitioners through the process of uploading CPD. The regulator is also sharing its guidance through employers and other organisations and running online training sessions for practitioners, with places currently available on sessions on 4 and 13 November. It has also published guidance on the renewal process.
How CC Inform can help you meet CPD requirements
Covid, Black Lives Matters and CPD
Meanwhile, Social Work England has commissioned research into CPD recording during the first year of registration renewal, focusing on:
- the experiences, including attitudes, perceptions and barriers, of social workers carrying out and recording CPD;
- the focus and type of CPD that social workers are recording and its relationship to Social Work England’s professional standards;
- what lessons Social Work England can learn from its first validation check of CPD, which will cover 2.5% of registrants, and any themes that can be identified across the profession’s learning;
- the extent to which, and how, social workers reflect on national and global events and social movements in their learning, eg Covid-19 and Black Lives Matter;
- how Social Work England should develop and improve its approach to CPD, based on specialist research into how and what social workers learn.
Blackmore said Social Work England would use the approach to improve its approach to CPD in 2021, under the new annual system of registration renewal.
“As an organisation we are committed to learning about social work and to gathering data and intelligence about the profession and people’s experiences,” she added. “We know that this has been a particularly tough year for many social workers and we appreciate all the CPD and valuable comments that we’ve already received.”