The practice educator will need to:
• Be available for pre-practice learning consultation with the prospective student to clarify whether the practice setting is a viable option*
• Prepare the team, office, practice setting and service users for the student arrival*
• Provide an induction programme* and be available to meet with the student and learning adviser to draw up the practice learning agreement and for review meetings
• Ensure the student is provided with details of the agency’s Health and Safety policy procedures*
• Allocate time for supervision sessions - at least 1.5 hours weekly
• Provide appropriate work and learning opportunities*
• Allocate time for direct day-to-day supervision as appropriate (including delegation to colleagues)*
• Impart such skills and knowledge as are necessary for the student to undertake social work tasks within the practice learning setting and to give time to teaching preparation as needed
• Directly observe the student in practice as required during the practice learning period
• Enable the student to understand legislation underpinning practice
• Facilitate knowledge and application of theory/methods to practice
• Inform the learning adviser of any changes in the agency which may affect the practice experience*
• Assess the student’s competence to practice
• Prepare and submit on time the completed Practice Learning, mid-point and final reports. The Practice Educator should ensure joint responsibility with the student for the content and completion of the report. The Practice Educator must ensure that reports are completed with the full knowledge of the student
• Give the student regular and clear feedback on progress
• Alert both the student and learning adviser to any areas which give cause for concern, and in particular, contact the learning adviser immediately if there are concerns which may mean that the student will not pass the practice learning period
• Contact the learning adviser immediately if the Practice Educator considers it necessary to withdraw the student from the placement (NB in the absence of the learning adviser the Practice Curriculum Manager can be contacted)
• Attend the PAC and Examination Board if invited
• In the event of a fail recommendation, to make a clear recommendation as to the student’s right to a further practice learning opportunity. Practice Educators are required to attend the Examination Board where a FAIL recommendation is made.
Practice educator professional standards
Practice Educators must now be working towards meeting the Practice Educators Professional Standards.
As of October 2013 Practice Educators for 70 day placements must be Stage 1 qualified and Stage 2 qualified for 100 day placements. As of October 2015 all Practice Educators must also be qualified Social Workers.
Long arm practice educator
All of the roles and responsibilities of the Practice Educator apply to the Long arm Practice Educator. In addition, the long arm Practice Educator should:
• Liaise with the on-site supervisor
• Arrange 3 way supervisor with the supervisor and student
• Work within the remit of the agency concerned
• Ensure effective communication with the employing agency.