Our children's social work teams
We're looking for enthusiastic professionals to join our teams across Kent. Find out more about our teams.
- is based in Ashford
- is made up of senior practitioners and experienced social workers and front door officers who work alongside the Police, health and probation colleagues
- screens referrals to Children's Social Work Services and Early Help and Preventative Services
- decides if the threshold criteria are met for an assessment or Section 47 to be undertaken, or whether an assessment by early help services or other services is more appropriate
- signposts to a range of other services to meet identified needs
- holds initial strategy discussions where necessary
- passes cases to the locally based social work and early help district teams.
- carry out children and family assessments, which may lead to a Child in Need plan, a 'step down' to early help services or no further action
- carry out Section 47 assessments on new referrals, and any resulting initial Child Protection Conferences
- initiate care proceedings where necessary.
Ongoing work to progress a Child in Need or Child Protection plan until outcomes are completed now remains with the original social worker who undertook the assessment. This is to ensure continuity for children and their families and avoid delays.
- begins to work with the child at the time of the first court hearing or the first review if the child is subject to a Section 20 arrangement and if it isn't planned that the child will return to their parents soon. The transfer process is planned in advance as much as possible to ensure compliance with court timescales.
- has a significant amount of court work
- progresses plans to adoption if appropriate
- is responsible for children and young people until the age of 18, when a separate care leaver service offers after-care support and advice
- works with unaccompanied asylum seeking children who are in the council's care.
We have a Disabled Children's Team in each area, plus a countywide Sensory Team. This team:
- has a team manager, senior practitioners and social workers, plus occupational therapists
- is responsible for the whole range of work with disabled children from the initial referral until the age of 25
- works with children who have a Child in Need Plan, a Child Protection Plan, or are going through care proceedings or adoption
- assesses and co-ordinates long-term support packages.
The Adolescent Team is designed to be an outstanding service.
- Working with a clear and transparent plan
- Achieving sustainable change
- Reducing the risk levels as quickly as is safely possible
- Committing to a weekly Case Progression discussion
- Extra visibility of the highest risk cases
- Support and input from peers, managers and expert practitioners
- A clear direction and transparent plan for all cases
- Focusing on reducing the need for young people to enter care
The work is high paced, focused and designed to effect change in short timescales with a team of practitioners who work closely together to enable sustainable change
Our Corporate Parenting Services are overseen by the Assistant Director for Corporate Parenting and are made up of 4 key services:
- Virtual School Kent
- Care Leavers 18+ Service.
The services work closely with our children’s early help and social work teams, health, education, youth offending and key partners including the Young Lives Foundation (YLF). Wherever possible, children and young people attend panel meetings to meet their corporate parents. The voice of our children and young people is represented at all panels by our Virtual School Kent apprentices and participation workers.
We've asked all teams in Kent County Council to think about how they can support our children in care, and make pledges of support to help them learn, develop and grow.
The Kent Fostering Service consists of 7 fostering support teams and 4 specialist teams who focus on:
- assessment and recruitment
- disabled children
- the sense of belonging service.
It is managed by the Head of Fostering, who has direct management responsibility for the centralised teams and joint responsibility for the staff within the support teams.
The service uses early care planning to make sure our children are in placements that offer them permanency through to staying put as they become adults. Children and young people should be supported to achieve a sense of belonging within their foster family.
The purpose of our Adoption Service is to provide a comprehensive service to meet the needs of our children and young people who have been or may become adopted, birth families and adoptive parents.
This includes services for those children and young people in our care with an adoption plan, and in relation to the non-agency adoption service. To achieve it aims our Adoption Service will make sure the needs and wishes, welfare and safety of the child are at the centre of the adoption process.