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Experienced practitioners

Pathway 1: practice supervisors

Practice supervisors, senior or consultant social workers, assistant team managers, advanced practitioners, practice educators
3 months
Time commitment
30 hours (the equivalent of 4 days)

Free except for travel for in-person modules

Delivered by


Who it’s for

Pathway 1 is for senior social workers in local authorities who supervise the day-to-day work of child and family practitioners.

What you’ll learn

Completing Pathway 1 will help you:

  • lead supervision sessions effectively
  • create a safe and inclusive team culture
  • support the mental health and wellbeing of practitioners
  • effectively manage risk and lead multi-agency relationships
  • reduce bureaucracy so practitioners can spend more time with children and families
  • draw on research to develop the quality of practice

What you’ll get

When you finish Pathway 1 you’ll get:

  • a certificate which can contribute towards your continuous professional development (CPD) hours
  • ongoing access to the practice supervisor network to support your development

It also prepares you for accessing Pathway 2 for middle managers.

How it’s delivered


Pathway 1:

  • lasts for 3 months
  • takes about 30 hours to complete
  • runs 3 times a year starting in November, February and May

In-person learning

There are 2 days on site at the University of Warwick.

Sessions are run by social work leaders and leadership development experts and include:

  • keynote talks
  • discussion time
  • practical workshops
  • time to build relationships with peers

Online learning


  • live interactive workshops run by sector experts
  • one-to-one coaching with a dedicated development coach
  • self-directed study sessions with a mix of reading, videos and reflection

You'll do about 14 hours of online learning. Each session lasts 1.5 to 3 hours.


Pathway 1 is funded by the Department for Education.

Accommodation and meals for the on-site days are included, but your employer will need to cover travel costs.

Next steps

Speak to your line manager to get support for you doing Pathway 1.

Find out more about Pathway 1 including how to apply on the Frontline website.