The Academy will offer those looking to get into social work a way into the profession whilst also giving further training to existing social workers.
Oldham Council Cabinet Member for Children and Young People, Eddie Moores, said: “Social workers are so important in Oldham. The work that they do protecting vulnerable children is vital. In our town, we highly value the people who do these jobs and that’s why we’ve launched this project because we want to be more than just an employer. We want people to choose Oldham and see for themselves how rewarding it is to work in a challenging role when you’re well supported by our fantastic social work teams.
“We know there’s a shortage of social workers nationally and that’s something we have to address. In order to keep Oldham’s vulnerable children safe we’re making this a major focus for us and this academy reflects that.”
Managing Director of Children’s and Young People services, Gerard Jones, said: “We’re committed to building a resilient workforce that wants to train and then stay in Oldham. We know for that to happen it means reducing caseloads in line with benchmarking best practice, reducing reliance on agency roles, enhancing teamworking approaches and ensuring the wellbeing of those who work here. So, we’re committing to making that happen as best we can.
“We also can’t ignore the fact that we’re currently in a cost of living crisis. We can’t expect people to do these difficult jobs without being properly compensated. That’s why as part of this academy it means social workers in Oldham get attractive pay and reward offers.
“If you’re thinking about a career in social work or just looking to continue your career in it then my message to you is come to Oldham and see what we have to offer.”
The academy is part of a major focus on children and young people in Oldham. As well as training social workers it will be aiming to streamline recruitment processes, encourage career progression, allow flexibility for sideways moves and encourage overall professional development.