Keeping Devon’s children safe – June 2014 update

Laptops, Adoption, Lean review, Staff directory, College of Social Work access, Children’s way we work updates and much more.

Back copies of staff bulletins:

Dear colleague

Following our last Ofsted Delivery Improvement Group (DIG) meeting, we discussed that as corporate parents of the children in care in Devon, all of us should be concerned about the education of our children in care – their GCSE results have worsened, and the gap between their attainment and that of their peers widened.

The Department for Education is reviewing our progress in improving child protection services in Devon on 24 June. Representatives of the department will be speaking to staff and children and families directly and using survey data and information from case audits. Find out more

The DIG also identified the emotional well being and mental health of our children in Devon to be a key priority.

The Children’s Safeguarding and Improvement Board (CIB) didn’t meet this month, therefore there is no update included.

Highlighted in this issue:

  1. Laptops
  2. Lean Review update
  3. Placement addresses being added to adoption records
  4. Foster to adopt
  5. Your staff directory entry
  6. How to register on The College of Social Work website


Children’s social work laptops

Coming soon… dedicated laptops for childcare social work services

Our frontline Business Managers will let you know when the laptops will be arriving at your office for you to collect and keep.  On-site support will be available as well as ‘plain English’ guidance notes. Find out more


Lean Review implementation update

The Lean Review implementation project continues to work alongside the Way We Work Group and other projects to implement practical improvements to working tools and processes supporting children’s social work.

Improvements to working processes and telephony have been successfully implemented at the MASH this month, following several months of work by a team including MASH, CSC, the project team and ICT. Read more

Recording adoption placement details on CareFirst

Change to process as approved at Children’s Way We Work Group May 2014

From 2 June 2014, pre-adoptive placement details should be added to the child’s CareFirst  record, the ‘Contact Adoption Team’ address  should no longer be used. Find out what to do on the CareFirst record

Foster to adopt

‘Foster to adopt’ is a new type of placement for looked after children. These placements can be used where the local authority’s permanency plan has decided that adoption is ‘probably’ the best plan for the child. Children can be placed with approved adopters who when matched to the child are then approved as temporary foster carers whilst the care proceedings continue. Check the guidance and find out more

Keeping your contact details accurate

  • How much time do you spend in a week trying to track people down?
  • How much time do you think other people spend trying to track you down?

Help your colleagues. Help yourself… just follow these search hints and tips


How to register on The College of Social Work website – for social workers

Devon has a full subscription to The College of Social Work (TCSW) and is committed to this investment to strengthen social work practice. And we have high expectations of our workforce to deliver the best possible service to children and families living in Devon.

As a social worker or a student you will be able to access the college for information to support your professional development at any time. The e-leaflet  provides more information about what TCSW offers.

If you have already registered as a corporate member , you do not need to take any action – your corporate membership rolls forward automatically.

New registrants should register using the Quick Signup Form and Devon’s voucher code:


To note: Choose your own password, and select Devon County Council as a College Member. Once you complete the form, you will be sent a confirmation email.

This requires a great deal less information than the usual online sign up available to independent members who subscribe via the website. Please do it today and make the most of your professional development!

HR update – Manager Briefing: performance and workforce development

This is the second planned monthly update on performance, workforce development and recruitment activity to share with social work teams. This month the focus is on performance and workforce development.

Read more about the career progression scheme and a revised approach to appraisals.