London Borough of Bexley
Head of Service for Children’s Social Care & Safeguarding
‘Making relationships with families and developing understanding together’
Salary up to £86,040 (inclusive of Market Premium & Choices Benefits) and the possibility of relocation allowance up to £8k
Job Reference: ECS0000494
The Council, its staff and partners, were delighted in August 2018 when Ofsted judged the overall effectiveness of Children’s Social Care services to be ‘outstanding’. We were especially pleased that our investment in frontline practitioners and managers was recognized since we have been working hard to create an environment where social workers can do the work they came into the profession to do - to support and help families to stay together where this is in children’s best interests and it is safe enough for this to happen.
Ofsted judged that we provide strong management oversight of practice, that we have a well – embedded practice framework to enable meaningful family focused help, that we offer clear progress in career pathways, a talent management scheme and a nurturing environment to enable social work to flourish. We believe deeply in relationship-based practice and ‘Signs of Safety’ is the vehicle enabling us to do this respectfully and in collaboration with the people we are trying to help.
In Bexley, our priority is for children to grow up in and remain with their families when it is safe for them to be there. Our commitment to 'signs of safety' means that everyone is learning to strengthen families by identifying naturally connected safety networks, developing clear explanations for children so that they understand what is happening and what must happen for them to be safe and to grow up well. If we are looking after children, we take that responsibility seriously and they will not be disadvantaged by coming into our care. We work rigorously towards good reunification where this is in children's best interests.
It is an exciting time for us and you will join a strong leadership team which will offer you an ideal opportunity to influence how we organise and deliver our vision. You will be part of an experienced permanent and supportive senior management team that is passionate about improving outcomes for our children.
Building successful and sustainable services for families is a priority for the Council and its partners. We are making good progress, and we want to sustain the strength of our leadership team so that we are able to accelerate the growth and development of our practitioners. We want to become an advanced practice authority, consistently offering families exceptional engagements and real opportunities to remain safely together in communities.
Within the Council there is a highly developed understanding of the complexity and importance of the work we do. This in turn means that there is wholehearted political and organisational support to deliver the best outcomes for children, young people and families.
You will manage 3 Service Managers who oversee our service delivery within our MASH, 4 Referral and Assessments Teams and 3 Family Support and Child Protection teams. In return we offer a stable workforce with around 90% permanent staff and good morale, the opportunity to make a real difference, excellent learning and development opportunities, including enhanced ‘Signs of Safety’ development.
It’s a chance to build on existing good practice but we’ll also want you to ask questions and to challenge how things are done. The Council has made a significant investment in Children’s Services and that comes with high expectations. As a qualified social worker, you’ll need to bring a distinct focus on high quality professional practice and an emphasis on effective performance management and leadership oversight.
If now is the time for you to join a team that is excited and committed to its next phase of improvement and practice development and you have a serious belief in the difference that high quality social work engagement can make for children, young people, their families and carers then please get in touch. This vacancy has arisen as a result to the promotion of the existing postholder.
For further information please visit bexleysocialcarecareers or contact our advising consultants at Penna: Chris Barrow 0203 849 2624 or Anita Denton 07725 554802.
For an informal discussion regarding the role please contact Fiona Cisneros, Deputy Director for Children’s Social Care on 0203 045 3651.
To apply please click here
Closing date for applications: Friday 4 October 2019
Shortlisting: w/c Monday, 7 October 2019
Anticipated Assessment/Interview: w/c Monday, 14 October 2019