A programme that recruits and develops children’s social workers has today (Thursday) been backed by government to be rolled out nationally, meaning 1,000 new professionals will be available to support some of the most disadvantaged children and families in Britain by 2020.
Secretary of State for Education, Nicky Morgan MP, used a keynote speech to announce that the government will fund the expansion of Frontline’s innovative social work programme from its existing base in the South East and Greater Manchester, to the whole country. The independent charity, which has cross-party support, will now start the 2016 recruitment process for 300 top graduates and career changers to transform the lives of vulnerable children and families.
The national roll out of Frontline is an endorsement of the charity’s success in bringing high potential individuals into this vital profession. The charity plans to expand into new regions every year, beginning with its launch into the North East this September. Local Authorities already working with Frontline have enthusiastically backed the quality of professionals the programme develops.
Today’s announcement will enable the organisation to meet the demand for new partnerships with local authorities across the country to ensure that those children who most need outstanding social workers receive the support they need.
Nicky Morgan MP, Secretary of State for Education:
“Schemes like Teach First have helped transform teaching into one of the most prestigious and high status professions in the country, and we must now do the same for social work. Frontline mirrors that approach by attracting the brightest and the best graduates into social work – giving them fast-track, top quality training in children’s social work. It’s no surprise then that there are more than 10 applicants for every place.”
Lucy Powell MP, Shadow Education Secretary:
“I’m pleased to support Frontline in its efforts to recruit and develop more outstanding social workers into the profession. Social work is a tough but rewarding job which can have a transformative effect of the lives of children and families. We need more great social workers making a difference in our communities and this announcement is an opportunity for the organisation to expand their reach across the country working in partnership with local authorities.”
Josh MacAlister, Frontline’s Chief Executive:
“Today’s announcement is a great opportunity for the charity to go national in developing even more outstanding social workers to stand alongside those children and families who need them the most. This endorsement is a reflection of the quality of the work undertaken by our participants who are already changing lives for the most vulnerable children and families in Britain.”
Lord Adonis, Frontline’s Chair:
“Social workers are crucial to improving the life chances of vulnerable children, and it is vital that we continue to address the national challenge in getting more top talent into the profession. I am delighted at today’s announcement, and confident that the national roll out of Frontline will make a real difference to the lives of children and families throughout the country.”
Watch Chief Executive, Josh MacAlister, discussing Frontline’s plans to go national on BBC Breakfast.
Watch Chief Executive, Josh MacAlister, speaking on BBC Two’s Daily Politics.
Watch newly qualified social worker and Frontline participant Raphael interviewed on BBC Two’s Victoria Derbyshire programme as part of a feature on Frontline’s plans to go national by 2020.