North East Children’s Social Work Conference – Workshop Summaries and Materials

On 4th October, the first Children’s Social Work Conference for the region took place at Sunderland’s Stadium of Light. The event was coordinated by North East ADCS and the twelve Local Authorities in the region with each one delivering a workshop on various engaging topics during the day.

Below is a brief description for each of the workshops along with a copy of the PowerPoint materials used during the session. Please feel free to have a read and download the materials to share with colleagues. And don’t forget to keep checking back to the NESWA website for access to other materials and events happening in the North East and beyond!


Workshop A1 – Principles of Restorative Practice – Middlesbrough Council

A practice workshop focusing on the principles of restorative practice and the impact of this on children and families. This practical based workshop will give attendees guidance and examples for using Restorative Practice Circles within all aspects of the child’s journey with a focus on the Social Discipline Window.

A1 Restorative Practice

Workshop A2 – Practitioner Responses to Sexual Exploitation – Newcastle Council and North Tyneside Council

This workshop will focus on practitioner responses to child sexual exploitation in Newcastle and North Tyneside, the tools which are used by the CSE Hub and how to engage with children and young people thought to be at risk from CSE. It will be an interactive session with the use of case studies and group work.

A2 Practitioners response to CSE

Workshop A3 – Solution Focussed Intervention in Teen to Parent Violence – South Tyneside Council

A practice workshop focusing on a real case study where solution focussed interventions were applied to address issues of Teen to Parent Violence as part of a response to a family crisis situation. The session will explore the use of solution focussed interventions in this situation, why it was successful and how it is applied in practice.

A3 Teen to parent violence

Workshop B1 – The Journey to Permanence via Adoption – Northumberland County Council

Hear from Northumberland County Council about how they support children through their journey to permanence via adoption with the ethos of the team being to advocate and ensure the voice of the child is present. This workshop will walk through a case study and give practical examples of using the model creatively along with the opportunity for discussion.

B1 The Journey to Permanence via Adoption

Workshop B2 – Leading from the Middle: Stories of Supervision, Social Work and Social Change – Gateshead Council

First line managers will deliver a ‘TED talk’ session based broadly around the idea of social work, and hence its supervision and leadership, as a force for social change.  The talk will aim to stimulate first line leaders across the region to experiment with what could happen if they were to lead, genuinely, from a context of social work knowledge and values.

B2 Leading from the middle

Workshop B3 – From Sceptic to Convert: Putting Signs of Safety into Practice – North Tyneside

This ‘warts and all’ presentation will give the sceptic, the moderately persuaded and the hard core Signs of Safety devotee time to reflect on the model and what it takes to genuinely embed it in practice. The session will share practical examples of the challenges in taking practitioners, managers, IROs, partners and others on the journey and in particular the cultural change required by Signs of Safety to work in partnership to keep children safe.

B3 Signs of Safety

Workshop C1 – Supporting Solutions: an edge of care case study – Durham County Council

This session will focus on a real life case study. We will follow the story of a young person and his family from referral at point of crisis to the Supporting Solutions Service which was designed to prevent children and young people aged 11 – 17years from moving into the care of the Local Authority. We will look at the support provided, and as a result, how the young person was able to remain living at home with his family.

C1 edge of care presentation – social work conference

Workshop C2 – Managing Domestic Abuse within FGC – Stockton Borough Council

A practice workshop with a focus on how domestic abuse is managed within the Stockton Family Group Conference service using case studies with the opportunity to share and discuss.

C2 Domestic Abuse in FGC

Workshop D1 Working with homeless 16 & 17 year olds – Together for Children, Sunderland

The practice workshop will give an overview of Together For Children’s integrated model of working with homeless 16 and 17 year olds, which has recently been identified as good practice by the Homelessness Advice and Support Team. It will also identify areas that Together for Children would seek to strengthen and develop. The session will give participants the opportunity for discussion as well as providing examples of protocols and guidance for staff.

D1 Homeless 16 and 17 year olds

Workshop D2 – ‘Invisible Children’: Working with partners to keep EHE young people safe – Darlington Council

How do you know that Elective Home Educated children in your area are safe? In this research seminar case studies will be used to illustrate the multi-agency approach taken in Darlington to reduce the vulnerability of children who are ‘invisible’ because they are not educated in school.

D2 Darlington EHE Presentation

Workshop D3 – Working with Unaccompanied Asylum Seeking Children – Redcar & Cleveland Council

This workshop will follow the journey of one or more of our UASCs. It will set out their individual circumstances and the challenges they faced along with what went well and what we learned. It will also touch on what the plan is going forward and how will they be supported as well as the important role the foster carer/social worker/personal adviser and others played in building up resilience and promoting independence and integration into the community. The session will include a young person and foster carer and have opportunity for Q&A with them.

D3 UASC Presentation

Workshop E1 – Relationship Based Approaches to Assessment – South Tyneside Council

The session will look at considering the notion of relationship based social work alongside the assessment process being a mechanism of intervention. Developing insight and understanding of why resistance may feature within the assessment process or broader social care intervention will enable attendees to think about their engagement strategies as well as some of the parental needs/issues which may impact upon parenting capacity, which is likely to influence/shape the development of relationships between social workers and parents/carers.

E1 Relationship Based Approaches to Assessment- Social Worker Conference presentation final copy

Workshop E2 – Attachment in Practice – Durham County Council

The session will provide a lively overview of attachment theory and then share a flavour of how we put this theory into practice to help promote recovery from childhood trauma/adversity. It will include hands-on tools, games and exercises that we share in therapeutic parenting sessions and use in our training courses for professionals, carers, connected people and birth parents.

E2 Attachments in practice presentation

Workshop E3 – Six Questions to Improve the Quality of Assessments – Hartlepool Borough Council

Introduces the 6 key questions to consider when assessing neglect to provide a more holistic and informed analysis of a range of key issues, building on the knowledge of best professional practice and feedback from serious case reviews. Giving an overview of Hartlepool’s Neglect Statement of Intent and how it materialised along with showcasing a video of a real case.

E3 Six questions to improve assessments

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