Job summary and Responsibilities
At Essex County Council (ECC) we are “Serious about Social Work”.
Having won the Best Social Work Employer of the Year Award and been awarded ‘Outstanding’ by Ofsted, ECC has also been announced as a Partner in Practice by the Department of Education, and the Essex Social Care Academy (ESCA) is the only Local Authority team in the country to be accredited by BASW as a CPD provider.
We have invested in our workforce and created a positive environment for our social workers to make a difference and achieve change for our most vulnerable children and families through direct relationship-based social work practice.
We have supported our staff to have an understanding of systemic theoretical framework and models underpinning our interventions; to have access to the right tools, equipment and resources; and also the right supervision, training and learning opportunities they need to be strong practitioners
Children in Care
Children in Care (CIC) teams work with children and young people up to the age of 18 who are in care– they’re unable to live at home and are either placed with foster carers or live in residential homes. You will work with children and young people to ensure their experiences in care is a good one and that the work undertaken prepares them for their transition into leaving care or return home to family.
The CIC Teams receive cases in proceedings after the first hearing, they visit children and young people in placement, develop permanency plans which include Special Guardianship Order (SGO) and adoption, undertake life-story work to enable a child to understand the reasons for being in care and also support children to return home to birth family. The teams are all committed to high quality work and engagement with all children in care to maximise young people’s potential. Like many other areas across Essex, they believe in working collaboratively with agencies, including Health and Education to ensure that care plans support the outcomes for the child.
As a Senior Practitioner you will provide leadership in the team, providing both support and mentoring to newly qualified or less experienced staff and deputising for the Team Manager when needed. You will oversee the review of some child in need plans particularly prior to closure and will have responsibility to lead in a practice area.
There will be opportunities for your own professional development and for being part of developing our team and service. There is an ethos of openness to the development of new ideas, particularly to reinforce our relationship-based focus, both with our service users and within the staff group.
Knowledge, skills and experience
Along with a diploma in Social Work, CQSW, CSS or equivalent, and Social Work England registration as a registered Social Worker, you will be expected to bring skill and high standards of social work to your own caseload, with a comprehensive working knowledge and experience within the field of practice in Children Services. You will have experience of planning activities and programmes for children, young people and parents, and strong evidence of your knowledge and understanding of child development, relating theory and practice.
You will have experience of court work in relation to Child Care matters and an understanding of the legal process, with knowledge of current legislation pertinent to Child Protection (e.g. CA1989, CJA1991), Guidance and Regulations.
Ideally, you will have experience of Child Protection work including section 47 investigations and assessments since the implementation of the Children’s Act 1989.Considerable, recent experience of communicating with children of all ages and working in partnership with parents and/or carers.
You will be committed to systemic, relationship based social work, providing effective, innovative interventions and with the ability to build good partnerships, both with our external partners and within the organisation.
In turn, we can offer you a highly competitive package that includes access to our desirable pension scheme, life assurance (of three times your salary), generous annual leave – plus the option to buy additional holiday. Optional benefits such as tax-free savings on childcare and discounted health and dental care are also available, and we will encourage you to develop your skills with ongoing training opportunities.
Crucially, we know that there is more to life than work. We are a motivated and enthusiastic team – but we want you to find an exceptional work/life balance. As such, you will be encouraged to make the most of our commitment to flexible working arrangements, including the chance to work from home.
So, if you want a better quality of life – complemented by a high degree of job satisfaction – then we would be delighted to welcome you to our friendly and inclusive team.
Qualification certificates should be brought to interview.
The role requires you to be mobile throughout a wide operational area including travelling around the county of Essex and beyond, transporting service users and their belongings and to be able to do so in an emergency. Driving licence and car or ability to meet the mobility requirements of the role through other means is essential.
As part of employment with Essex County Council should your role require a DBS check you will be required to register with the DBS update service. The DBS update service ensures all registered DBS certificates are kept up to date and allows authorised parties to view the status of your certificate. This is an annual subscription and you will be responsible for ensuring this is maintained. For further information on the DBS update service please visit: https://www.gov.uk/dbs-update-service
Essex County Council is proud to offer an excellent benefits package to all its employees. For more information please use the following link: https://www.workingforessex.com/benefits/
Essex County Council is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and vulnerable adults and expects all employees and volunteers to share this commitment.
We seek the best talent from the widest pool of people as diversity is key to our success.
If you have any queries regarding this role, or require anything further, please contact the Recruitment Team on 03330135888