Are you a Newly Qualified Social Worker due to complete your Assessed and Supported Year in Employment? - Surrey Children's Services Academy

Assessed and Supported Year in Employment programme (ASYE)

Surrey children's services continues to operate a successful ASYE scheme as recognised by our recent Quality Assurance visit from Skills for Care in Autumn 2023, who found "there is a robust and well thought through ASYE programme which has ownership from the pinnacle of the organisation to those on whom it impacts, the assessors, NQSWs, children and families." "Your ASYE programme achievements should be celebrated".

The ASYE programme for NQSWs is designed to help you make the transition from a qualifying educational course to the world of professional social work in your first year of employment. The expectation is that the knowledge and skills gained through your course will be consolidated in the first year of practice, and that specialist knowledge and skills will be developed in relation to the employment setting and people with whom you work.

Support for Newly Qualified Social Workers (NQSWs)

Our goal is to provide you with a supported and protected year in which you can 'find your feet' in the social work setting with all its complexities and challenges. We will support you by providing protected workloads, increased supervision and bespoke learning and development opportunities.

Our Academy ASWs will play a vital role in supporting, training and assessing NQSWs to successfully complete their ASYE. The Academy run regular learning events, and work together with you and your team manager to support and monitor your development, as evidenced through your ASYE portfolio. Separating out the Assessor role from that of Team Managers means that you will have an increased support network during the programme.

Assessment during your ASYE

The emphasis is based on direct evidence of your work and progression. The key documents required over the year will be based around your work completed, direct observations of practice, feedback from families and professionals, supplemented by critical reflection pieces you as a NQSW. The assessment framework is set out nationally and makes use of the post qualifying standards for social work (Knowledge and Skills Statements for child and families) and Professional Capabilities Framework (PCF) for NQSW level. You will have review meetings at 3, 6, 9 and 12 months with the ASYE Assessor writing the reports. At the end of the programme, a final recommendation is made (to pass or not) and the portfolio moderated by an internal panel who make the final decision. Passing from NQSW into Qualified Social Worker is another step on your journey, and we will support you into Post Qualifying Year 2 (PQ2). See the PQ2 section for more information.

Our offer for the ASYE programme

We are passionate about the support and guidance we give that enables you to successfully complete your ASYE. We listen to feedback from stakeholders and so are continually developing our programme therefore the offer may vary slightly from year to year, however, please see the 2023 to 2024 offer below to give you an idea of what your ASYE with us might look like:

  • ASYE Academy Induction programme and Team Induction.
  • Allocated Advanced Social Worker who will be the ASYE Assessor, in addition to the Team Manager.
  • Monthly ASYE Learning Events with activities focused on the Post Qualifying Standards Knowledge and Skills Statements (KSS).
  • Two days a month Protected Development Time (one day to attend the learning event and another to complete portfolio evidence and independent study).
  • Action Learning Sets.
  • Graduated Supervision offer, with increased support in first six months and monthly one to one or group reflective supervision with the ASYE Assessor (in addition to line manager supervision).
  • Advice and Guidance from Surrey's Quality Practice and Performance Service (Practice Standards team).
  • Protected staged workload, increasing in volume and complexity over the year.
  • Access to Community Care inform (CCinform), Research in Practice (RIP) and Care Knowledge learning platforms.
  • Access to Surrey Safeguarding Children's Partnership training programme.
  • NQSWs will have access to a secure SharePoint hub which simplifies the electronic storage of the ASYE portfolio, allowing collaborative working with your ASYE Assessor and Team Manager. The hub also has a variety of up-to-date resources from learning events, useful links, and supporting information to aid learning and development within the organisation.

Feedback on Surrey Children's Services ASYE programme

In September 2023, Skills for Care's completed a quality assurance review of our ASYE programme. We are proud to share the positive feedback they gave below:

The NQSW experience is central to the ASYE:

NQSWs are active participants, throughout the life of the programme, rather than passive recipients. From the moment of onboarding, the wellbeing of NQSWs is prioritised as they are made aware of the support structures available to them.

The NQSWs reported positive aspects of the programme which included support from their Assessors and teams, protected time for learning, reflective space, training with other organisations, the ability to be autonomous in their learning and practice and provision of access to Community Care Inform, Care Knowledge and Research In Practice.

The ASYE coordinator actively acts on feedback to change and refresh the offer.

Equality, Diversity and Inclusion is progressing and becoming richer, with thought as to how it connects to the organisation as a whole.

ASYE celebration event

We enjoy celebrating the achievements of our NQSWs who have passed their ASYE programme through an annual event. Coming together to recognise the hard work and achievements from the first year in practice is important and we want our staff to feel valued as they enter their Post Qualifying year 2 (PQ2). Read about our September 2023 celebration event.

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