Survey of Children’s Social Services and Care Rates in Wales

We really value your commitment to helping us bridge the gap between research, practice, and policy. This is why we are calling on you. If you work in children’s social care, we need your views and opinions on social care practice in Wales.

The survey will take 15 minutes of your time, but your contribution will be invaluable to helping us to understand stark variations in the numbers of children in care between local authorities. Plus, you will be entered into a prize draw with other members in your local authority to win £250 for a children’s charity of your choice.

Your responses will be anonymous and individual local authorities will not be identified in our final report.

Thank you in anticipation, we can’t wait to hear your thoughts to help us make a better future for children in Wales.

Make Your Mark

Make Your Mark is an opportunity for 11-18 year olds across the UK to have their say and begin their democratic journey by voting on the policies they want to introduce or change.

The issues you vote as the most important will be debated by Members of Youth Parliament. They will campaign to influence the UK Parliament and their local representatives, ensuring that the views of young people are listened to by decision makers.

This is your opportunity to influence decision makers who can make a real difference on the issues that matter to you. Make Your Mark is one of the most important and influential ways young people can take part in a democratic process.

You have until 30th November to cast your vote!

Topics Include:

  • Support our Mental Health
  • Free University
  • Tackle Child Poverty
  • Stop Plastic Pollution
  • Increase Racial Awareness in the Curriculum
  • Take Action on the Climate Emergency
  • Votes at 16
  • Tackle Discrimination and Hate Crime in the UK
  • Include Young People in the Plan for Covid-19 Recovery
  • Protect Human Rights

The Early Childhood Education and Care COVID-19 Impact Study

The research is being carried out by staff at Swansea University, School of Education in conjunction with the national umbrella organisation ‘Children in Wales’.

COVID-19/coronavirus pandemic on Early Childhood Education and Care (ECEC) provision in the UK.

We are looking for input from people who work in the early years sector (with children aged 0-8) — practitioners, childcare workers, setting managers, and teachers — to tell us about their experiences of working during the pandemic.

We wish to better understand the impact of the changes that have been made, as well as practitioner perceptions of these changes; we focus on the impact of coronavirus on early years provision, practitioners and children. The findings from this research will be used to better inform emerging policy and practice across the four nations of the UK, to better understand and support settings and schools in dealing with current and future events of this kind.

Please click on here to undertake:

https://swanseachhs.eu.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_8cVDs03cCGClsiN

The survey will close on the 4th December

National Engagement Group for Carers

The National Engagement Group for Carers works alongside the Ministerial Advisory Group for Carers to help inform Welsh Government’s approach to supporting unpaid carers across Wales.

During the week beginning 19 October 2020 the Engagement Group will be holding a series of events to amplify the voices of unpaid carers and the professionals that work alongside them.

The events will give carers and professionals the opportunity to share how COVID-19 has impacted on them and what steps they think should be taken to make sure that carers receive the recognition they deserve and the support they need.

All events will be held on Zoom and last for 90 minutes.

6pm Monday 19th October – Young carers

SIGN UP

2pm Tuesday 20th October – Older Carers

SIGN UP

10am Wednesday 21st October – Healthcare professionals

SIGN UP

2pm Wednesday 21st October – Carers Services

SIGN UP

10am Thursday 22nd October – Parent Carers

SIGN UP

2pm Thursday 22nd October – Social workers

SIGN UP

This post was originally published by Carers Trust at carers.org

Applications for the ground-breaking Lead Creative Schools Scheme open

Join thousands of like-minded professionals who are committed to helping learners fulfil their creative potential.

Welsh Government and the Arts Council of Wales are delighted to announce that applications are open once again for the pioneering Lead Creative Schools Scheme, as part of the second phase of Creative learning through the arts – an action plan for Wales.

From today, schools can embark upon a memorable journey that will allow you to explore creativity and bring about fundamental changes in how you work. You will join thousands of like-minded professionals who are committed to helping learners fulfil their creative potential and achieve their best in all areas of learning and development.  

Since the beginning of the programme in 2015, 658 schools have participated in the Lead Creative Schools Scheme with over 1,700 teachers having experienced the benefit of collaborating with creative professionals to explore creative approaches to teaching and learning.

What is the Lead Creative Schools Scheme?

The Lead Creative Schools Scheme provides the opportunity to explore creative approaches to teaching and learning with the support of creative agents and practitioners.

Each project is unique and is designed to help address specific challenges identified in the school’s development plan. In addition, it aims to nurture the creativity of learners, raise attainment aligned to Welsh Government’s priorities and support whole school change to prepare for Curriculum for Wales 2022.

Lead Creative Schools offer – what you can expect:

Becoming a Lead Creative School will support your school to:

  • address your school development priorities
  • bring about transformational approaches to teaching and learning
  • improve outcomes for learners and
  • develop your creativity.

Successful Lead Creative Schools will receive funding to explore:

  • how creativity and creative approaches to teaching and learning can transform learner outcomes and support a change in the learning culture in schools
  • what it really means for young people to be creative and how they know when it is happening
  • what teachers and other creative professionals can do to encourage and develop creativity and
  • how the qualities of a high functioning classroom can support creativity across the whole curriculum

Funding:

Schools will apply to join the Scheme for two academic years receiving a grant of £10,000. After their first year, schools will have to demonstrate they have met the requirements of the Scheme and that they have a clear plan for the next phase of their involvement.

  • Grant funding will pay for your project work over each academic year you are in the Scheme. You will be expected to make a school contribution of 25% of the grant total. This may be met by cash from your school budget and/or other grants and can include the cost of your School Coordinator’s time (up to 10 days) working to support your engagement as a Lead Creative School

 Eligibility criteria:

  • available for any state-maintained schools (Foundation phase – KS4)
  • schools who have not yet participated in the Lead Creative Schools Scheme and
  • any partner schools from Year 3 school to school development programmes, partner schools from Developing Creative Leaders programme and Lead Creative Schools ‘cluster’ schools (2015-2020)
  • Schools that participated in the Lead Creative Schools Scheme online, who have not already participated in the Scheme are also welcomed to apply.

The commitment we expect from schools:

  • supply cover costs you incur when the school coordinator and participating teachers are attending the Lead Creative Schools training and networking events. Training will be delivered over 1 day running from 10 – 20 November (excluding Mondays)
  • allow participating teachers time to plan, evaluate and reflect with all partners and to actively support them to experiment and to teach creatively
  • involve teachers and learners as active partners and co-constructors of learning in planning, delivery and evaluation
  • Demonstrate active support for the Scheme from the headteacher and senior leadership team
  • Use the learning from the project to inform the future School Development Plan

How to apply

Schools should complete the Lead Creative Schools Application Form. The deadline for applications is 17.00 on 7 October 2020.

We will aim to notify schools of our decisions by 4 November.

If you have questions about your application to the Lead Creative School Scheme you can contact us at creative.learning@arts.wales but before doing so you are advised to read the Handbook fully.

Competitions

Apprenticeship Awards Cymru

Applications for the 2021 Apprenticeship Awards Cymru are now open until 12 noon, 30 October, 2020.

Apprenticeship Awards Cymru rewards individuals, learning providers, and employers who have excelled in contributing to the development of the Welsh Government’s Employability and Apprenticeship Programmes across Wales. The Apprenticeship Programme is funded by the Welsh Government with support from the European Social Fund.

Jointly organised by the Welsh Government and the National Training Federation for Wales (NTfW), these Awards showcase and celebrate the achievements of those who have exceeded expectations and shown a dynamic approach to training, demonstrated initiative and enterprise, innovation and creativity, and shown an understanding of, and commitment to, the improvement of skills development for the Welsh economy.

The Awards offer individuals and organisations the chance to be recognised and rewarded for their commitment, hard work, achievements and success in the Welsh Government’s Employability and Apprenticeship Programmes.

Nominations for German Teacher Award 2020

If you know a truly outstanding German language teacher at your primary or secondary school – make sure that their dedication and excellence get the recognition they deserve!

Closing date: 10 April 2020

Win a visit to Glan-Llyn for your school or college

Be the first group ever to stay at the new Glan-IIyn Isa’ centre, a prize worth more than £8,000! Open to secondary schools, college and university groups.​

Closing date: 3 April 2020

The young money challenge 2020

The first ever Young Money Challenge has now launched. Download your Challenge Packs – they include everything you and your students need to enter the Young Money Challenge! @youngmoneyedu #YMChallenge2020

Closing date: 27 March 2020

Product development competition to win an iPad

Food Innovation Wales are inviting pupils aged 11-16 to create a new Welsh food and drink product to have the chance to win an iPad.

Consultations

Draft Tertiary Education and Research Bill

Consultations were carried about:

  • the needs of the learner
  • Welsh language/Welsh-medium
  • the needs of the economy and employers
  • Regulatory impact assessment
  • Post Compulsory Education and Training reform

Embedding a whole-school approach to mental health and well-being

Consultations were made about possible improvements to how the framework will support:

  • positive mental health and emotional well-being of all learners and staff
  • the development and embedding of best practice
  • consistency and collaboration between schools and  partners
  • activities such as training and awareness

CARE in the time of COVID for care-experienced young people – University of Oxford

Would you like to share your experiences of COVID-19? If you have experience of being in care in the UK and are over the age of 18, send us your own diary entry of a written piece, of music, or of art: 

  • Written (200 to 600 words
  • Audio or video (3 to 5 minutes)
  • Music, a song, poetry or spoken word
  • Art you have created (please accompany this by a short explanation) 

The #CareConvos team will provide weekly prompts inspired by historical diaries and a selection of diary entries will be published on social media. 

We are also inviting people to complete a short survey about their mental health status and coping strategies. You will not be asked about your care experience. All those who complete the survey and submit a diary entry will receive a £15 voucher. 

To submit a diary entry for this week, tell us about one of the following: 

  • Tell us about your day to day experiences during COVID-19
  • Tell us about your day last Saturday (9th May 2020)
  • How do you feel about the length of lockdown (“Stay at home”)? What adjustments have you made to the way you enjoy your time? 

You can submit multiple entries, but vouchers are available for only two entries per month. 

To take part or find out more: 

Visit our website: www.careinthetimeofcovid.org 
Contact: aoife.ohiggins@magd.ox.ac.uk
Twitter page: @CareandCOVID
Instagram: @careinthetimeofcovid

Impact of COVID-19 on the language development of infants aged 8-18 months, and aged 18-36 months

This is a Cardiff University project in connection with the outbreak of the Coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) and the measures on quarantine and social distancing implemented by the UK health authorities on 23.03.2020. As parents, we are often interested in following the development of our children and finding out how they have learned at various points in the early years of life. Understanding what children know and how they learn is also important for researchers interested in understanding their development. In this research project, we want to investigate how quarantine and social distancing can affect language development in children aged 8-36 months. 

The questionnaire is for parents with children learning English as their main language, and there is going to be a follow-up questionnaire conducted when quarantine measures have ceased.​ Participate in the survey.

Qualifications Wales launches consultation on grading for summer 2020

Qualifications Wales today publishes a consultation document setting out how, in the absence of exams, this year’s GCSE, AS and A level grades will be standardised across the country and how the appeals process will work. The regulator wants all interested parties to examine its proposals and submit their views before the new arrangements are finalised. 

“Extraordinary times call for extraordinary measures. Summer 2020 will be proof of that on so many fronts, including education,” said Chief Executive Philip Blaker.

“Given the decision to close schools and cancel exams as a result of the coronavirus pandemic, establishing new arrangements for this summer is essential to enable learners to receive their grades fairly so that they are able to progress to the next stage of their lives, whether that is further study, training or employment.”

Grades will be based on centres’ judgements of each learner’s attainment, which will then be standardised across centres drawing on a range of other evidence. The consultation is seeking views on two key aspects of arrangements for summer 2020. 

The consultation is seeking views on two key aspects of arrangements for summer 2020:

  • The aims which will underpin the statistical standardisation model that will be used for the award of grades for learners taking the affected qualifications. This will be developed and used by WJEC to ensure that grades submitted by centres across Wales are judged at the same level.
  • The specific appeals process that is needed for the 2020 summer exam series given that papers will not be marked in the usual way.

This consultation covers GCSEs, AS and A levels and the Welsh Baccalaureate Skills Challenge Certificate that are developed in Wales by WJEC and regulated by Qualifications Wales. The consultation is open from Tuesday 28 April and closes at 5pm on Wednesday 13 May 2020. Full details, including how to respond, can be found on the Qualifications Wales website

Children in Wales survey

In our last members update on 31st March, we set out some of the changes we are making in the way we deliver our valued services in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. We are now making adaptations and implementing new and exciting ways in which to deliver our core work over the coming months.

The importance and benefits of working together, staying connected and speaking with one voice are even more important now that ever before. This means listening to what our members have to say; advocating for the best possible outcomes for children and sharing the best possible solutions & resources to support our members and the children, young people and families you work with throughout Wales.  

We are keen to get the children’s sector’s views so that we can achieve these aims together, and be able to respond as effectively as we can. Please could you take a moment to complete our survey to help inform our programme of work. We have intentionally kept if brief as not to take a great deal of your valuable time. 

Co-SPACE COVID-19 study

Are you a parent or carer of a child in school years 0 (reception/foundation) to 11 in the UK? If you are we invite you to take part in a regular online survey being run by the University of Oxford. The survey will take up to 20 mins the first time you do it and about 10 mins thereafter. We will ask you to complete the survey weekly for a month, then fortnightly for a month, and then monthly until children and young people are back in school. Participate in the survey

Monmouthshire education services survey

We want your views on how well Monmouthshire education services supports schools and youth services. Your opinions will help us judge how effective the education services are at ensuring young people receive the education to which they are entitled.

If you’re a parent, carer, learner or work/are involved in education in Monmouthshire we’d like to hear your views.

Staff training needs questionnaire

WJEC is working as part of a consortium, led by AlphaPlus Consultancy Ltd, commissioned by Welsh Government to develop the personalised assessments. As part of this work, WJEC is providing training to schools on administering and using the personalised assessments.

In order to tailor training provision to your staff needs, we encourage all schools to complete the short online questionnaire.

Changes to disabled students’ allowances

Welsh Government want to improve the quality of support available to eligible students. We are consulting on the following changes:

  • amalgamation of allowances
  • availability of a pre-arranged package of support
  • responsibilities for arranging support
  • improving DSA awareness

Structure for Welsh apprenticeship frameworks

Welsh Government are are seeking your views on the structure of apprenticeship frameworks. 

Qualifications Wales’ consultation on the nature of qualifications to be taken at 16 is now live

Education in Wales is embarking on a significant period of change, and at the centre of these changes is an innovative curriculum for 3 to 16-year olds.​

To complement the new curriculum, they want the next generation of 16-year olds to take globally respected qualifications that inspire and prepare them for life, learning and work. We want to be sure that any changes we make lead to long-lasting improvements and stability for the qualifications system.

Written statement – Consultation, summary of response: Draft Welsh in education strategic plans regulations (Wales) 2019 and guidance

The Welsh Government undertook a consultation on the draft Welsh in Education Strategic Plans Regulations (Wales) 2019 and Guidance between 30 May and 13 September 2019. The document summarising the key themes from the responses received to that consultation and the Welsh Government responses has been published today on the Welsh Government website.

Draft keeping learners safe guidance

Welsh Government wants your views on the revision of the 2015 guidance for local authorities and governing bodies on arrangements for safeguarding children.

Ensuring access to the full curriculum

Welsh Government are seeking your views on the impact of the proposal to change parents’ ability to withdraw their children from Religious Education (RE) and Relationships and Sexuality Education (RSE) in the new curriculum.

Professionals and practitioners child & family poverty survery 2019 C

Children in Wales have been carrying out an Annual Child & Family Poverty Survey for the last 4 years, which helps us tounderstand levels and trends of child poverty in Wales. 

Beaufort Research

Draft: Keeping learners safe guidance

Gov.wales want your views on the revision of the 2015 guidance for local authorities and governing bodies on arrangements for safeguarding children. Consultation ends 7 November 2019.

Regulations for licensing Animal Exhibits proposed

Regulations to introduce a licensing scheme for Animal Exhibits such as mobile zoos and petting farms have been introduced for consultation today by the minister for Environment, Energy and Rural Affairs. Consultation ends 21 November 2019.

Education (Amendments relating to the intervals for Inspection of Education and Training) (Wales) Regulations 2020

Gov.wales want your views on proposals to amend the regulations. Consultation ends 25 November 2019.

Ensuring access to the full curriculum

Gov.wales are seeking your views on the impact of the proposal to change parents’ ability to withdraw their children from Religious Education (RE) and Relationships and Sexuality Education (RSE) in the new curriculum. Consultation ends 28 November 2019.

Social media in social work: A research survey

Social media is surrounded by ethical dilemmas and ongoing questions in Social Work practice. As part of my Masters dissertation in Social Work at Cardiff University, I am conducting a short, 5-minute survey. It is an online questionnaire looking at social media use in Social Work and asks questions in relation to how professionals are using social media, examining some of the ethical dilemmas which social media creates.The questionnaire offers the opportunity for participants to highlight how they feel social media helps or hinders their everyday practice. The survey is anonymous and can be completed by anyone working in or training in Social Work or anyone who has worked in Social Work previously. If you are a Social Worker past or present, or currently training to be a Social Worker, I would appreciate your input. Thank you for your support with this research.

Purpose and agency in teaching survey

The research is funded by Cardiff University and is led by Dr Kevin Smith. The study is not sponsored by or affiliated with Welsh Government.

The WRISK survey

Women who are planning a pregnancy, or who are pregnant, get advice and information from many different sources. This can be helpful; but may also cause anxiety – and evidence may not always be well explained. The WRISK project wants to hear about your experiences.

The WRISK survey aims to learn more about women’s experiences of advice and information they received both before and during pregnancy. The survey is open to all women who have been pregnant in the last 5 years, regardless of how their pregnancy/ies may have ended. There is particular interest in hearing from women whose voices are not often heard – such as BAME women, women in receipt of welfare benefits, and younger and older women.

Adverse childhood experiences awareness survey

Public Health Wales wish to gain insight into the views and understanding of adverse childhood experiences (ACEs) amongst staff in public sector roles within Wales.

To do this, they have commissioned Strategic Research and Insight (SRI), an independent research company based in Cardiff, to carry out an online survey. This will gather the views of public sector workers across Wales.

The survey is important because it will help understand, for the first time, the levels of relevant expertise, knowledge and skills available in public service to tackle the outcomes of ACEs in the adult and child population in Wales.

Public Health Wales would like to hear from as many Wales-based public sector workers as possible, irrespective of their role. This could include, for example, people delivering front line services or people who work in operational, management or leadership roles. It may also include people who work in organisations which deliver services funded by the public sector e.g. Third Sector.

If you have any queries, or would like any information to help promote the survey, please contact Angus Campbell of SRI at angus@strategic-research.co.uk.

Kinship carers: State of the nation survey

The State of the Nation survey is an opportunity for all kinship carers to help develop services and fight for improvements in support for kinship families. This year the focus is on the time when you first became a kinship carer, because this is such a critical stage and often shapes the support that you and your family receive. We want to hear directly from you about your experiences and the improvements you would like to see. Complete the survey here.

Funding, Grants & Jobs

Care Leavers paid internship

Care leavers paid internship is one way the Civil Service is showing our commitment to Care Leavers.

Our paid internships are available at two levels: 

  • Administrative Officer (typical salary £17,400 per annum); you will be working in a supporting administrative role with no line management responsibilities, and typically within a team structure.
  • Executive Officer (typical salary £20,000 per annum); you will be involved in problem solving, business planning and policy making within Government. They usually work within a supportive team structure, under the direction of relevant team leaders. They can also hold individual responsibility for pieces of work within a programme or project. Those that apply unsuccessfully for the Executive Officer role may be considered for the Administrative Officer role.

Big Lottery Community fund

National Lottery Awards for All offers funding from £300 to £10,000 to support what matters to people and communities. You can apply if your organisation is a:

  • voluntary or community organisation
  • registered charity
  • constituted group or club
  • not-for-profit company or Community Interest Company
  • social enterprise
  • school
  • statutory body (including town, parish and community council).

National Lottery Awards for All has three funding priorities and you must be able to explain in your application how your project or activity will:​

  • bring people together and build strong relationships in and across communities
  • improve the places and spaces that matter to communities
  • enable more people to fulfil their potential by working to address issues at the earliest possible stage.
  • You can find out more from the Community Fund website.

Prince’s Trust Cymru Development Awards

Aged 16-30? You could be eligible for a payment, of up to £250 to help you into work, education or volunteering.

Development Awards can help fund:

  • Tools or equipment for your job or qualification e.g. hairdressing kit, carpentry tools, chef’s whites, personal protective equipment (PPE)
  • Course and training fees
  • Clothing for interviews or work experience
  • License fees e.g. CSCS card (construction) or SIA license (security)
  • Childcare costs to help single parents access  short term education
  • Transport costs e.g. bus/rail travel to a new job until your first salary payment

For more information: 
Freephone 0800 842 842
Text ‘Call me’ to 07983 385 418
princes-trust.org.uk
info@princes-trust.org.uk