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5e Training and development sub group

Purpose of the group

The sub group operated as a “Safer Workforce & Training group” from October 2011 onwards, looking to cover wider workforce planning issues within its brief. A review of its Terms of Reference early in 2014 means it is now focusing on fulfilling its support role specifically to the SGSCB. Therefore, its core purpose is to: identify training and development needs and gaps, arrange delivery and/or commissioning of learning solutions and programmes to meet these and review and evaluate the quality, scope and effectiveness of single and inter-agency training. It also exists to oversee the training delivered locally to ensure it reflects local and national needs, with particular reference to findings in Serious Case Reviews, Domestic Homicide Reviews and multi-agency Case Reviews.


  • To enable staff and agencies to access appropriate training in line with national guidance
  • To promote a shared understanding of the tasks, processes, principles, roles and responsibilities and local arrangements for safeguarding children and young people and promoting their welfare
  • To improve communications between professionals, including developing a common understanding of key terms, definitions and thresholds for action
  • To promote effective working relationships based on respect and an understanding of the role and contribution of different disciplines, including an ability to work in multidisciplinary groups or teams
  • To promote sound child focused assessments and decision making
  • To promote learning from Serious Case Reviews and Reviews of Child Deaths
  • To use the available resources in the most effective way


Membership is drawn from relevant managers within South Gloucestershire Council, South Gloucestershire Clinical Commissioning Group, North Bristol Trust, Avon & Wiltshire Partnership, Avon & Somerset Constabulary and agencies from within the Voluntary & Community Services sector.

The membership of the training sub group is an area that requires some further focus to establish that it is representative of all the members of the LSCB.


The training sub group meetings are held on a quarterly basis. At times, the sub group facilitates ‘task and finish’ groups; this is done in agreement with the group to complete specific tasks and this increases the frequency of meetings.

Performance and effectiveness/impact of work undertaken

Data on Inter-Agency Course Attendance

Total course attendance across the 14 LSCB courses, plus a selection of “other” inter-agency programmes: 1,026. Comparisons with the previous two financial years are below:

COURSE TITLE(number of courses delivered, 2014-15) Attendance2014-15 Attendance2013-14 Attendance2012-13
Annual TOTAL 1,026 1,281 822
Inter-Agency Child Protection (10) 240 274 190
Advanced Inter-Agency Child Protection (8) 189 132 148
Child Protection Update (6) 114 132 115
Single Assessment Framework: Awareness (6) 83 145 68
Neglect Training (5) 72 106 n/a
Child Sexual Exploitation (4) 59 72 49
Identify & Respond to Domestic Abuse (5) 54 35 25
“Mind Out” Mental Health Awareness (3) 50 53 n/a
Single Assessment Framework: Update (4) 41 111 34
Parenting Capacity (3) 33 37 36
Working with Difficult & Avoidant Families (2) 31 47 37
Child Sexual Abuse (2) 17 37 21
Forced Marriage/Honour-based Violence (1) 8 26 43
Child Protection & Disability (1) 6 22 20
Other: Rapid Response to Child Death, Joint Investigation/Achieving Best Evidence etc. 29 52 36

E-Learning: five e-learning modules continued to be available, with over 1,600 logins being arranged in 2014-15 for employees, who work in a range of agencies, but mainly Early Years settings and in schools / pre-schools. Rates of completion continue to run at around 60%. Work is ongoing to remind employees who have been given logins to complete the relevant module.

Attendance Rates: across the above courses the overall attendance rate was 83.5%. This means that 16.5% of bookings led either to a late-cancellation or a “no show” on the day of the course.  This “non-attendance” figure is around 5% higher than the norm for LSCB courses in recent years.

The courses with the highest rates of no show/late-cancellation were: Identifying & Responding to Domestic Abuse (27% of bookings) and Child Protection & Disability (25%, though only across one course).

The agencies/sectors with the highest rates of no show/late-cancellation were: Foster Carers & Adopters (average 34% of bookings), South Gloucestershire Council – all employees (26%), and NHS – all agencies (20%).

Inter agency training - Attendance by course


Attendances Breakdown by Agency / Sector:

Of the 1.026 total number of attendees, representation by agency/sector was as follows, mirroring very closely the proportions from 2013-14:

Sector/Agency % of all Delegates (rounded)
Council Employees 35%
School/Pre-School settings 32%
NHS Agencies 12%
Early Years 7%
Independent & Private Sector 5%
Voluntary Sector 4%
Foster Carers & Adopters 3%
Police 1.5%
Others (Town & Parish Councils, Probation, GPs, HE/FE sector) 0.5%

Inter agency training attendance by sector

Customer feedback and evaluation:

The range of inter-agency courses are subject to detailed delegate feedback in order to gain a picture of the quality of the training being delivered.

A summary of the “immediate” feedback given at the end of each course shows that, as in 2013-14, 99% of delegates felt the training itself was either Excellent or Good. In addition, 88% felt they learnt everything or most of the things they needed to (up 1% on the previous year).

Learning audits are undertaken specifically on the 1-day Inter-agency Child Protection and 2-day Advanced Inter-agency Child Protection courses. These “test” delegates’ knowledge about a number of issues before the course starts, and then re-test this immediately the course finishes. In summary, the audits continue to show that for both courses, the training is increasing participants’ knowledge levels, especially around: key legislation, guidance and thresholds, use of TED questions, private fostering and knowing what steps to take if someone is not satisfied with a response to a referral.

New for this year is  a “longitudinal” evaluation which aims to understand the extent to which learning is actually being transferred into work settings. Delegates are emailed a questionnaire approximately three months after their course attendance and asked about their confidence levels and whether they have since made any changes in practice.

Across 2014-15 these delegate responses show:

% delegates who reported that their confidence increased following the training: fully or mostly 94.5%
% delegates who reported that they changed their practice as a result of the training: fully or mostly



These figures mirror very closely those taken through the previous financial year.

Annual Safeguarding Children Board Conference: Balancing Optimism and Risk – Learning the Lessons from the Child C Serious Case Review

In 2014 the training sub group facilitated the LSCB conference. The subject of this conference was South Gloucestershire’s SCR ‘Child C’ and in particular a focus on men in families, injuries to non-mobile babies, e-safety, reflective supervision, young parents, early help, domestic abuse and information sharing. The training sub-group will be responsible for organising annual Safeguarding Board Conferences on an ongoing basis.

Attendees at the LSCB Conference

Areas for improvement and future development

  1. Impact of training on practice. The sub group has recently identified a need to systematically review the learning outcomes and content of all the inter-agency training courses to make sure they are sufficiently linked to local issues and action plans. This is an area that will be developed with our integrated working trainer. Part of their role will be to assess the quality of the training and its relevance to practice. This work will also focus on whether a greater variety of learning delivery methods can be introduced, such as “bite-size” sessions, action learning sets, or more online/e-learning
  2. The training sub group will also undertake work to consider the impact of training on practice and this will be routinely monitored by contacting trainees and their team managers over the course of several months
  3. There will also be a greater focus on auditing and ensuring that results from audits are considered within South Gloucestershire’s training programme
  4. A significant focus is being placed on CSE and the training that South Gloucestershire offers in relation to this to the whole of the work force
  5. Signs of Safety implementation will be an area of focus for the training sub group in the forthcoming year
  6. Ensure that we capture feedback from people who use our services and that these messages are influencing the work that the sub group is undertaking
  7. The training sub group will collate Section 11 Children Act 2004 audits in order to promote a culture of challenge
  8. The Board has been consulted and agreed a new policy of charging for training and being more robust about following this up with regard to people who do not attend arranged training events

Leigh Zywek, Policy and Practice Manager, Chair of the sub group.