Minister warned over ‘deep instability’ in social work education following £50 million fast-track contract

A group of academics, campaigners and the British Association of Social Workers has called on the government to halt the procurement process for a £50 million contract that would train up to 900 social workers through fast-track routes. The group raised the concerns following the prior information notice for the contract published in March and warned the continued extension of fast-track routes without a long-term evaluation would create instability in mainstream social work education. The letter said that, while a study has been commissioned to understand the impact of Frontline alongside university routes, it has not concluded. However the government was “committing large amounts of money to extend a programme that is unproven in resolving the challenge for employers of retaining and developing experienced social workers”. Read more.