Skills for Care

The Assessed and Supported Year in Employment (ASYE) programme is a 12 month employment-based programme of support and assessment for newly qualified social workers (NQSWs) working with children and families during their first year of employment.

How should I support the NQSW through the ASYE?

The Department for Education (DfE) requires that you provide your NQSW with the following support, which is included in the Standards for Employers of Social Workers:

  • regular supervision
  • a training and development plan
  • opportunities and protected time to meet their training and development needs
  • regular reviews of progress leading to a final assessment.  

You can use the record of support and progressive assessment template to record this information. This template can also be used to record any issues or concerns.

If any concerns are raised about the capability of the NQSW, the ASYE assessor should speak with the ASYE co-ordinator and human resources (HR). Any capability issues raised during the ASYE will need to be managed separately through performance management procedures.

In this case the DfE may ask to see these records.


What are the assessment requirements?

As of November 2014, your child and family social workers should be assessed against the requirements of the knowledge and skills for child and family social work.

The Government response to the consultation on the statement of knowledge and skills for child and family social work makes it clear that the professional capability framework (PCF) is an overarching standards framework.

The Knowledge and Skills Statement is specific to child and family social work. 


Which method should we use to collect evidence?

DfE doesn't have a preferred method for gathering ASYE evidence for child and family social workers.


Who will assess the NQSW?

The ASYE assessor must be a registered social worker, and they should have the necessary experience for the role. The assessor will support, assess and record the progress of the NQSW over the year.


How will the final decision be made?

As the employer you will make the pass/fail decision at the end of the ASYE. You must consider whether your NQSW has met the requirements of the Knowledge and Skills Statement, taking into account the recommendation of the assessor.

The assessor’s recommendation should be:

  • accurate - consistent with the expectations of the Knowledge and Skills Statement (and the PCF ASYE capabilities if used) 
  • valid - based on evidence that reflects the breadth of the NQSW’s work throughout the year and their progression 
  • robust - based on evidence that is checked and consistent and leads to a defensible judgement 
  • sufficient - based on a sufficiently broad and varied range of different types of evidence.  

Our quality assurance guidance on the internal and external moderation process for the ASYE for adult services will help you to check the quality of the assessment decision.


Further information for social workers of child and family services

This policy document Putting children first – Delivering our vision for excellent children’s social care outlines how the Government will deliver fundamental reform across children’s social care services in England.

“Our vision is for a social work profession that has fully confident and highly capable social workers, who have been properly trained in the right way with the right knowledge and skills. They must have the opportunity to work in supportive environments that facilitate critical thinking and enable them to make the best decisions for children and families.” Putting children first – July 2016 Department for Education (DfE).

There are three levels of professional practice;

  1. Approved Child and Family Practitioner – this applies to lead professionals working with named children under the local authority’s statutory framework (commonly referred to as ‘case responsibility’).
  2. Practice supervision – this applies to those responsible for educating, developing and supervising social workers.
  3. Practice leadership – this applies to those responsible for social work services for children.  The development of practice leadership will start in 2016.

Together with employers the Government has undertaken an extensive period of activity to establish the most effective way to assess social workers. This aim of the assessment and accreditation is to increase public confidence in social workers working with children most at risk.

The assessment and accreditation system [need link - current link not working] will provide that mechanism, so that employers and the public can be assured that social workers meet the expectations of the Knowledge and Skills Statement (child and Family) 2014. 

Moving into supervisory roles is equally important and it’s essential that social workers are supported in this transition to ensure they are properly able to supervise and support others under their responsibility.

That’s why DfE will establish a new programme for the development of those making the transition from frontline practice into practice supervision, similar to the ASYE for frontline practitioners. 

Practice supervisors will be assessed against the Knowledge and Skills Statement for Practice Supervisors.