FOSTER CARER SUPERVISION AND TRAINING
Vineyard Fostering Agency is committed to ensuring staff and carers receive regular and effective supervision. Supervision supports the development of a positive culture in the Agency and provides a focus for continuous improvement and consistent practice which help to improve outcomes for vulnerable children, young people and their families.
The Agency will ensure:
- Each member of staff and each carer has an induction.
- All staff and foster carers receive regular supervision and informal support as required.
Supervision is a formal process in which the workload and performance of each individual is evaluated and reviewed so that support can be provided as required and training and development needs identified.
All staff and carers will receive regular formal supervision, normally by their Line Manager or Supervising Social Worker to enable them to:
- Be clear about their role, responsibilities and accountabilities.
- Understand and achieve their individual aims and objectives and those of the Agency.
- Be supported in maximising their potential.
- Be clear about communication methods which allow for constructive two-way feedback.
Formal supervision does not replace the informal supervision that takes place on a more regular basis as required.
Supervision is a private but not a confidential process. This means that the records are the property of the Agency, not the individual. Where there is an explicit issue that needs to remain confidential this must be agreed between supervisor and supervisee.
Supervision is not a forum for dealing with disciplinary matters, although concerns about work, personal competence or conduct will be raised in supervision. Where it is anticipated that a more formal process is needed, the matter should be dealt with outside supervision and via the appropriate procedures.
Any areas of disagreement between the supervisor and supervisee will be recorded on the supervision records. Areas of disagreement that cannot be resolved may be referred to the Fostering Manager.
It is recognised that, in addition to individual supervision sessions, there are other ways in which staff and foster carers discuss and seek advice. This could be through peer mentoring or in a group setting. These are valuable and helpful ways in which staff and foster carers can broaden their knowledge and expertise, however they must never be a substitute for formal individual supervision sessions.
The child’s allocated social worker should be contacted for specific advice or support in relation to the child and their Care and Placement Plans.
Frequency of supervision meetings will be agreed between the foster carer and the Supervising Social Worker and should take place as appears necessary in the interests of the children placed with them and in accordance with the agency’s policies and procedures.
Informal supervision will take place as required.
Foster carers will also be provided with information about what support will be available from the Agency outside office hours, including the relevant contact details.
There would be an unannounced visit at least once a year. The main purpose of the unannounced visit will be to look at the home environment that a child is living in.
Supervising Social Worker
In addition to the child’s or young person’s Social Worker, a Supervising Social Worker is allocated to support and supervise every foster carer with the placements they provide.
All children and young people in placement with Vineyard Fostering are visited regularly as part of the role of the Supervising Social Worker. In undertaking this, due consideration is given to the role and involvement of the local authority social worker, so that there is clarity between the roles and responsibilities of each agency and social worker. The Supervising Social Worker will ensure that the best interests of the child and/or young person are being safeguarded, promoted, and identify further services that are appropriate to promote the physical, mental, and emotional welfare of the child or young person.