Working with children
As of February 2023, our Children’s Services have been judged ‘outstanding’ by Ofsted inspectors for the second time in a row. They found that the service had a ‘clearstrategic direction, strong partnerships and good political and corporate support’ allowing it to make a significant difference to children’s lives. Inspectors found that theservice has a well-trained workforce that is improving the lives of children and families and that frontline workers feel safe and supported because of the quality ofmanagement oversight and decision-making.
Our practice is relationship-based, using the Signs of Safety framework.
Our approach to children’s social care:
Children should stay with their families whenever it’s in their best interest and safe where it’s not, we must act quickly through the courts to help children find a safespace success depends on positive, respectful relationships with families and with each other working with families is unpredictable, so we have to create a supportive environment for our teams the most effective practice is based on ‘showing your working out’ – so that even when things don’t go to plan, the thinking behind decisions is clear and defensible.
Signs of Safety
At Bexley we use the ‘Signs of Safety’ model, which has been adopted as our practice framework and is in line with our ‘Bexley Values’. As with all practice frameworks, we also work within the framework of the Children Act (1989). The model is used across all of our services within Children’s Social Care and is being developed with our partner agencies. The Signs of Safety framework is a way of working that puts children and families at the centre of practice with our underpinning ethos statement being ‘Nothing about us, without us’.
The Signs of Safety approach emphasises the need to foster open, honest and respectful relationships with families in a compassionate and respectful way. Wefacilitate ‘Family Network Meetings’ to support families with finding their own strengths within their networks that support the safety and wellbeing of their children. The Signs of Safety incorporates a system whereby we obtain feedback from families to inform us about our practice and help us look at how we can continuously make improvements to our service.
Please refer to the Job Description attached for more information.
We will offer you in return a package that includes a competitive salary, an excellent pension scheme and generous annual leave plus bank holidays. For more information on the benefits package on offer please refer to the Candidate Information document attached.
We reserve the right to close adverts earlier than the closing date.
Assistant Team Managers (ATMs) play a vital role in supporting our Bexley vision by ensuring that our social workers are supported and that high quality practice isdelivered to children and families. ATMs are expected to show strong and compassionate leadership and create a secure team environment of open discussion/challenge whilst allowing Signs of Safety practice model to flourish.Reporting to a Team Manager, ATMs at Bexley will support a Team Manager leading a team of 5-7 social workers. ATMs are not case holding, but are expected to be versatile and dedicated in the support they will provide to case holding colleagues. ATMs need to evidence robust supervisory skills as they are required to supervise 2-3 social workers.
This is vital in our Looked after children and permanence service to fulfil our role as corporate parent. For the full list of essential and desirable criteria for this role then please refer to the Person Specification within the Job Description attached
You are a qualified social worker and registered with Social Work England. You will have significant experience of working within a Service focused on looked afterchildren, having supervised staff and managed the timely completion of statutory processes. Court work experience is essential for this role as you will be supporting social work colleagues through proceedings. You inspire people, supporting and leading colleagues to achieve positive outcomes for our children and their families. You have experience and an understanding of working within a diverse, urban community; and share our ambition and energy in embracing new ways of working. You are a positive individual with a mature approach and are conscious of the importance ofprofessional development for yourself and your team. You are always open to helping others.
Appointment to this post will be subject to the outcome of an Enhanced Disclosure obtained through the Disclosure and Barring Service (DBS)
This authority is committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people and vulnerable adults and expects all staff and volunteers to share this commitment.
This post is considered by the authority to be a customer-facing position; as such it falls within scope of the Code of Practice on English language requirement for public sector workers. The council therefore has a statutory duty under Part 7 of the Immigration Act 2016 to ensure that post holders have a command of spoken English sufficient for the effective performance of the job requirements. The appropriate standards are set out in the JD/Person Specification. These will be applied during the recruitment/selection and probationary stages.
Bexley is well connected, there are good transport links to central London, the Kent countryside and the Coast! It is the best of both worlds. Our residents and workers can benefit from the new high-speed Elizabeth Line which goes from Abbey Wood, here in Bexley and all the way to Reading, Southeast England.
We are a diverse and growing borough. By 2030 our population will be over 260,000 and almost 300,000 by 2050. Almost 25% of our population is Black and Asian Multi-Ethnic. Bexley is one of London’s greenest boroughs and has recently been awarded Public Sector Campaign of the year by Sustainable City’s prestigious annual awards.
We believe that everyone in Bexley Children’s Social Care should have the opportunity to grow and develop, in every role and at every stage of their career and offer a wide variety of social work roles, both for qualified and unqualified practitioners. Bexley Children’s Social Care offers the opportunity to develop skills and knowledge in different areas of Children’s Services: we offer a comprehensive range of professional development opportunities and are committed to ensuring that Bexley is a welcoming and enjoyable place to work.
The children and families we work with, are always kept at the centre of our practice. We believe:
children should stay with their families whenever it’s in their best interests and safe to do so
where it’s not, we must act quickly through the courts to help children find a safe space
success depends on positive, respectful relationships with families and with each other
working with families is unpredictable, so we have to create a supportive environment for our teams
the most effective practice is based on ‘showing your working out’ – so that even when things don’t go to plan, the thinking behind decisions is clear and defensible
Working in social care in Bexley is endlessly rewarding. As well as helping some of the most vulnerable people in our borough, we invest in looking after you and your career.
We offer excellent benefits, from competitive salaries and generous leave to flexible working and a wealth of health and wellness programmes.
flexible working - including opportunities for hybrid working, job sharing, compressed hours, and career breaks
a comprehensive range of training and professional development opportunities including access to research, group and e-learning, coaching and group supervision for colleagues in all roles and at every stage of their career
clear career progression pathways, within a nurturing environment, which allows social work to flourish. From opportunities to undertake social work qualification; our dedicated ASYE Academy; to our Leadership Academy offering bespoke development for our aspiring and existing leaders. There are also opportunities for practitioners to be involved in university research & academic delivery with our partner universities and students.
family leave - includes maternity, paternity, adoption and parental leave
mental health and physical wellbeing - including access to our Employee Assistance Programme, help to quit smoking, access to private healthcare, free eye tests and discounted leisure offers
financial wellbeing - excellent pension scheme, charitable giving options
generous annual leave - 25 to 33 days, with the option to purchase extra leave plus an extra bank holiday at Christmas
competitive pay - performance assessments with the opportunity for salary increments and transparent salary scales
transport offers - cycle to work scheme, carpooling, subsidised parking and interest-free season ticket loans
recognition - Thank you messaging to celebrate staff success and sharing of compliments received
professional and personal development - training and workshops to help you thrive and a discount on most Learning and Enterprise College Bexley courses
staff support networks - our networks support and encourage networking between staff with various events throughout the year
employee volunteering - get out of the office and help a local project blossom
MyChoice benefit scheme - your pick of perks from vouchers to car leasing
local authority discount scheme - attraction and theme park discounts and local offers in partnership with KAARP .
We work together in a modern, well-equipped, energising environment that supports team working and collaboration across the service and with partners
© London Social Work for Children 2024