Breakfast with the National Skills Academy for Social Care at NCVO

Richard Banks of CPEA Ltd and SCA

About 15 participants – care home training staff, owners and a few consultants plus Charlotte Tuck a communication person from DH enjoyed an educated breakfast at NCVO this week. All the (non-edible) materials for the session can be found at

This was one of two NSA member events (another is scheduled in Sheffield on 30th October) to:

  • Update on the social care climate
  • Report on the survey of Registered Managers – ‘Everyday Excellence’
  • Inform about the ‘Careship’ programme on leadership and registered managers with different descriptions aimed at different roles with in sector
  • Report on research for NSA on care sector reputation – ‘Who cares’
  • Advise on integration thinking with Skills for Care

Sir Stuart Etherington (CEO NCVO) provided a welcome to building and a summary of the environment for the charitable sector. After what might, in hindsight, be regarded an a era of growth the charitable sector he said it was now suffering from reduced giving related to recession and cuts in contracting as public sector reduce costs. Ideas of government about the ‘Big Society’ appear to have gone but he thought they did encompass hopes for increase in social investment, localism and public sector reform. The response of the charitable sector has been more mergers and a focus on core or particular successful areas of work. Sir Stuart acknowledged that the charitable sector were often pressed into contracting for poorly considered care services whereas good social enterprises had access to start up funds to support more radical redesign of services. He expressed a belief that the definitions between charities, social enterprise and public interest were getting blurred in people’s minds if not in legal status. He remarked on the success in changing government proposals that would have damaged tax on contributions.

Debbie Sorkin reminded us of demographic demand and that mismatch with public funding quoted David Behan ‘austerity is the new real’ and Clive Bowman ‘social care is being brutalised’
She thanked SCA for support on pointing out the need to focus on registered managers and introduced the report. NSA response is to support registered managers to overcome defensive practice (illustrated by a story about therapeutic use of pets being banned from a home after a dog tripping incident which caused no harm) and develop links into networks. Marcia Asare will be in charge of registered manager activity for NSA.

Discussion was about poor inspection practice on nutrition, lack of leadership from government but mostly focused on the positive ideas of networks for managers. Some interest was vocalized on ideas about registered managers as local resources (information on issues of ageing for example) but main focus was on dealing with isolation of managers and providing a source for sharing and gaining thoughts on good practice.

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Haydn Davies Jones – Short Obituary

After a career in the Navy in which he was seconded to the Royal Navy Detention Quarters as Education Officer, Haydn was appointed as Commander (Deputy Head) and then Captain (Head) of Wellesley Nautical Training School, an approved school which trained boys for a career at sea. He held these posts from 1953 to 1961, and was then appointed as Lecturer in the School of Educationat Newcastle University. He was promoted to Senior Lecturer and then Dean of the School, working at the University from 1961 to 1989 when he retired. He was head of a post-qualifying course for residential child care staff, which led to the University\’s Diploma in Advanced Educational Studies and the Central Training Council in Child Care\’s Senior Certificate in the Residential Child Care of Young People. This course was, together with its Bristol counterpart, highly influential in introducing new ideas and well over three hundred heads of schools and homes and other senior staff will have been on the course during his tenure. Haydn himself, following a sabbatical in continental Europe, was an early – and keen – advocate of social pedagogy long before it was piloted in the United Kingdom. Haydn died on 4 August 2012 and a memorial service will be held in Ponteland on 6 October 2012.

David Lane, Editor of Children Webmag

A full obituary is available here:

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