Children's Services monthly bulletin

Children's Services
John Gregg


Spring has officially sprung and I'm sure that many of you, like me, will be enjoying the lighter, longer days. 

The work we do in Children's Services does not stop for sunshine however - and every single day your work changes the lives of children and young people in Coventry.

Our Ofsted inspection is now complete, and we await the official judgement after the General Election, but you can read the feedback received in the presentation slides in the newsletter below.

In the meantime, thank you for everything that you do - it does not go unnoticed by myself and the Senior Leadership Team. 

John Gregg, Director of Children's Services

Improving our practice

It's important we all take responsibility for improving our practice. Here are must-reads for everyone this month:

Looking after yourself in practice 

A series of workshops aimed at frontline Children’s Services practitioners and social workers will provide the opportunity for staff to explore and understand what personal resilience is and how this can be developed. 

These interactive workshops will be led by Lee Pardy-McLaughlin, Principal Child and Family Social Worker. If you would like to book onto one of the sessions, please use the link to the booking form below. 

  • 5 May 9am – 12noon Dame Ellen Terry Suite
  • 12 May 9am – 12noon Dame Ellen Terry Suite
  • 12 May 1pm – 4pm Dame Ellen Terry Suite

Click here to book your place on a session.


Let's be crazy about young people - Route 21

Following Route 21's Development Day in February, focusing on adolescent risk and development, teams are invited to log on to RIP and get a free download of the following material: 

  • That Difficult Age: Developing a more effective response to risks in adolescence: Evidence Scope (2015)
  • Risk-taking adolescents and child protection: Strategic Briefing (2014)

Transforming Children’s Services – staff engagement

See the slides from the recent staff engagement sessions on plans for the redesign of Children’s Services and the proposed structure,


Have your say on changes

Following Cabinet’s approval of the Connecting Communities proposals, we will soon start formal consultation with staff on plans to redesign Children’s Services and transform the way we work, 

The redesign follows the recent Ofsted inspection and will help us to continue our improvement and make sure we are providing the right services for the children and young people of our city. 

As part of the work, we have been looking at how we and our partners can support children and young people to better life outcomes and we now have proposals on different ways of working that will help us to achieve that vision.

The proposals have been developed around the life journey of our children and young people and what we think they and their families need from our services.

But before that work takes place we want to hear what you think about the proposed structure and its impact on children and their families.

The survey is part of a programme of staff engagement initiatives that are making sure you have a say in any changes and your experience is used to help shape our future service.

Your views are very important, so please take five minutes to complete the survey before 27 April

Practitioner Learning Event: The Duty to Prevent Radicalisation

Are you working with radicalisation or extremism cases?

What learning can we share from a wide range of practitioners?

Read more about the learning event, which will be held in Birmingham on Wednesday 3 May. 

Life story work training

Find out more about the importance of Life Story work, the practice issues involved and get useful resources and ideas.

  • 25 April, 9.30am to 12.30pm
  • 13 June, 9.30am to 12.30pm
  • 12 Sept, 9.30am to 12.30pm
  • 7 Nov, 9.30am to 12.30pm

Book a place online or email

News and updates

Ofsted presentation 

The presentation slides following the Ofsted inspection are now available to view on Beacon. 

They include feedback from the inspection team and cover areas of strength in the service alongside aspects that we still need to improve. 

The inspection report will now be published after the General Election.

View the slides. 


Have you had your appraisal?

Everyone needs to have their appraisal by 30 June. Make sure you book one with your manager, if it's not in your calendar already.

Find out more on Beacon

Work Based Supervisor training

Are you interested in being a work based supervisor for a social work student, working with a practice educator to provide a student placement? Come and join us for a two day training course in June.

Find out what’s involved in being a work based supervisor

Develop your knowledge and skills

  • Dates:  19-20 June,  9:30am – 4pm each day
  • Venue: Coventry University

Run by Eleanor Parker (Coventry University) and Jim McGeoghegan (Warwick University)

Please seek your line manager's approval before booking a place on the course by e-mailing Eleanor on to request a place.

Phoenix Awards

Children's Services' success at Phoenix Awards

Children's Services staff and teams saw a number of successes at the organisation's first ever Phoenix Awards, which celebrated some of the people in Coventry City Council that go above and beyond.


The winners from Children's Services were:

  • Partnership work of the year – Rebekah Eaves
  • Special Achievement – Jackie Mallett
  • Lifechanger- Broad Park House
  • Innovation – Rachel Brown.

Read more about the celebration and find out the other winners. 

Social Worker of the Year

The Social Worker of the Year Awards 2017 are now open for entries for individual social workers and social work teams from across England.

The awards will be open for entries until 21 July.

This is an excellent opportunity for Coventry's Social Workers, teams and managers to showcase the difference they make to children, young people and their families. Find out more at

If you know a team or social worker that you believe should be nominated on behalf of Children’s Services, please let Principal Social Worker, Lee Pardy-McLaughlin know your suggestion to put forward to the Senior Leadership Team; please e-mail Lee at

Have your say

Public Health supports children and young people aged 8-18 years to stay safe and healthy by avoiding /reducing drug and alcohol use, adopting safe sexual behaviours and being in healthy relationships where they are treated with respect and not forced to do things they don’t want to do.

The service is being redesigned, and the team needs your input to shape how it will be delivered. 

Read more about the services currently provided for young people and have your say on how they are delivered. 

West Midlands Social Work Teaching Partnership

We have been offered two places on the Coaching and Mentoring and Practice Education on the Birmingham Post Qualifying Leadership Programme. Places will be funded by the Teaching Partnership. Find out more about what's involved and how to apply on Beacon

These modules are available to experienced social workers where it has been identified through their appraisal and supervision that they want to undertake practice education training and development. Please confirm your application with your manager prior to completing the application form and return to Lee Pardy-McLaughlin as soon as possible.

Aspiring to Social Work

A new course has been developed for people working in Children's Services who are interested in becoming social workers.

The Open University is working with Lee Pardy-McLaughlin and Jan Goode to deliver the Aspiring to Social Work programme. 

Course tutor Gill Walker has spent some time shadowing some of our teams and wrote a short blog about her time in Coundon.

Putting yourself in our shoes

Young people's perspectives on professional support after sexual violence

Thursday 27 April, 12.30pm to 2.30pm, University of Birmingham

This workshop is part of the new Social Work Teaching Partnership we have with Birmingham University. Please discuss and agree your attendance with your line manager before booking a free place. 

Find out more about this workshop.

One stop advice and support for carers

A new Carers' homepage is now available on Beacon, bringing a range of information, advice and practice guidance into one place.

It includes guidance about supporting adult carers, parent carers and young carers and explains the Council's statutory duties in supporting carers.

This is to help raise awareness about carers and ensure more consistency in the way they are supported, which is one of the improvements identified in Coventry's multi agency Carers' Strategy.

It also includes information for employees who are carers to ensure they know their rights at work and have easy access to the Council's family friendly policies that can help carers balance their caring responsibilities with paid employment.

If you want to keep up to date with what's going on for Carers in Coventry sign up to the Coventry Carers Bulletin

Transformation Programme updates

Work is progressing on each of the projects in our work to transform Children's Services and put children and their outcomes at the heart of what we do. 

Visit our update page to find out what's been happening this month. 

If you have questions or comments e-mail

    In case you missed it...

    Get in touch

    Email with your updates, comments or suggestions.

    April 2017

    *New updates*

    Children's Services Learning and Development Portfolio

    The Children’s Services Training Portfolio is available on Beacon so that the service can view the training offer and how to book onto the sessions available.

    Access the portfolio

    Children’s Portfolio 2016 – 17

    Foster Care Portfolio

    Useful links
    British Association of Social Workers
    Research in Practice
    Community Care
    Family Law Week
    Health and Care Professions Council