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Supervision and the Social Service Workforce

The work of this interest group is now complete. This group began its work in March 2020 with planning calls and then breaking into three sub-groups to further explore and define supervision. As a result of more than 60 members' contributions, in October 2020 a new Guidance Manual on Strengthening Supervision for the Social Service Workforce was released. The group encourages use of this document and to share feedback for incorporation into future versions or other tools.

This Supervision and the Social Service Workforce Interest Group mandate and objectives were to:

1. Provide a platform to exchange the array of existing tools, resources and knowledge pertaining to supervision of the social service workforce

2. Develop and promote key benchmarks related to the provision of effective supervision

3. Develop recommendations of how to incorporate tools to support effective case management supervision within Primero, a digital inter-agency child protection information management system (CPIMS+)

4. Identify effective models and examples of supervision across different settings and promote case studies of those models, or prepare case studies where they do not already exist

Practice-based evidence and research has shown that structured, supportive and reflective supervision helps to improve worker retention and performance and results in higher quality services and support to children and families. Despite what is known about the importance of supervision, it remains challenging to implement for a range of reasons. Social service workers and managers require better access to capacity building tools and resources, methods of guiding and tracking effective supervision, and positive models of supervision to learn from and use to advocate for increased resources. 


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