Impact Assessment Model

The model has been developed to ensure that learning is not a box ticking activity, but a process, which requires the learner to identify and evidence impact of learning on their practice. The development of the approach applies and promotes the following principles, in acknowledgement that:

  • Learning is transfer of knowledge, is evidenced by practice and is competency-based
  • Learning is enhanced by the provision of ready-to-use tools and techniques to support and improve practice
  • The effectiveness of learning and development cannot be measured by attendance on training co
  • urses alone, requiring also a process to measure the impact and application of knowledge in professional practice
  • Post-learning assessment and support is provided through reflective group supervision to review learning and progress, check understanding, provide additional help, support the application of techniques to practice and ultimately, to collect practical evidence of practitioners’ competencies and the impact of their learning on their practice
  • All practitioners who work in Health and Social Care are required to meet the Continuing Professional Development (CPD) Standards provided by  HCPC, as part of the professional registration and renewal process
  • The delivery of the programme promotes and evidences CPD to meet the requirements of the HCPC and also embeds competency-based practice into the culture of service providers


To ensure that all practitioners working in Children’s Services* are able to apply a range of communication and engagement tools to capture the voice of the child in care-related decisions. Also to ensure that this process is clearly evidenced and recorded in all case-work documentation and reports.

*The term Children’s Services is used to describe Core and Wider Children’s Workforce who work directly with young children in the Health or Social Care profession.

Learning Outcomes

At the end of the workshop, practitioners will be able to apply the following learning outcomes to their direct practice with young children:

  • Understand children’s rights to be listened to
  • Understand the values and ethics of listening in a social work setting
  • Identify Why, What, How, When and Where listening occurs in social work practice
  • Apply practical, evidence-based tools and techniques to establish rapport, build relationships, and increase communication and engagement with young children
  • Utilise methods of evidencing and recording listening activities with young children

Service Outcomes

The Listening to Young Children proposal embeds the key principles from the ‘Competency Impact Assessment Model’ developed to support the evidencing of social worker expertise in all areas of practice.  The model provides a competency-based approach to assessing social worker expertise, to inform the workforce development planning process. The model provides leaders, managers and practitioners with a framework to support service improvement and culture change.

Delivery Model

The delivery of the service improvement model to all children’s social care practitioners will include:

  • A competency-based pre- and post-learning self-assessment, to identify learning requirements and measure the impact of learning on practice
  • A workshop to increase the skills, knowledge and confidence of practitioners in building rapport and listening to young children as part of the assessment, care planning and review process.
  • Practical, evidence-based toolkits providing practitioners with ready-to-use communication and engagement tools and techniques to support direct work with young children.
  • Reflective group supervision sessions to support the application of learning to their practice, promote reflective practice, provide additional support, identify areas of  learning still outstanding and where required, provide professional challenge.
  • Provision of a quality assurance tool to monitor, audit and scrutinise practice.
  • Completion and presentation of an Impact Assessment and Evaluation report to identify the impact of learning on practice and make recommendations on areas for further development, to inform the workforce planning process.

Method Reasoning

The proposed approach of the Listening to Children Framework Evaluation and Impact Assessment Model is based on the reasoning that:

  • Communication is essential to gaining understanding and commitment to the programme
  • The programme begins with a presentation to senior managers to gain their understanding and agreement to the aims and outcomes from the programme.
  • Service Managers will lead the change in culture that is required to enhance and promote the voice of the child in care related decisions.
  • Managers will be provided with a Listening to Children service improvement framework to monitor, audit and scrutinise practice, in order to achieve these changes.
  • Managers will be provided with the aims and objectives of the Listening Framework to generate ownership, confirm buy-in and engagement through promoting awareness of:
    • the support, training and supervision on offer
    • the range of practical toolkits that will improve practice
    • the programme’s basis in practical application, requiring learning to be evidenced in practice

Supporting Resources

To improve outcomes from the training, the workshop is supported by a range of tools and techniques, designed to provide practitioners with ready-to-use tools to support, improve and enrich listening practice.

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Hartlepool Borough Council commissioned Lisa approximately 18 months ago to deliver the Listening to Children Framework to Newly Qualified Social Workers. Due to the success of the approach, we have gone on to commission Lisa to deliver the approach to more experienced Social Worker and Early Help Support Workers. Our experience and outcomes from working with Lisa have been really positive. Her ability to adapt to the needs of our organisation and fit with the strategic, policy and practice direction have meant that improvements have been made to listening to children at many levels.

The impact of the approach is being seen directly on practice, with practitioners evidencing the ability to listen to children and to record this in case management systems. Lisa has created the ‘See Me. Hear Me. Know Me’ ™Tools, which have been provided to Social Work Teams. The response and feedback from practitioners has been great, with social workers finding them useful in improving their listening practice in direct work with children. The outcomes from the training and the Tools have led Hartlepool to purchase the Tools for all Social Work Teams in Children’s Services.

Lisa brings vision and energy to her work and has recently started working on a Foster Carer Pilot, delivering new training to Foster Carers to improve the level of child’s voice in CLA Reviews. The results of the pilot are excellent, with the programme being very well received by Foster Carers. We are introducing plans to roll out the Programme to all Foster Carers in Hartlepool in 2018. Our experience of working with Lisa has been really positive. We are really pleased with the work we have developed with Lisa and look forward to continued working with her.

– Sarah Ward, Principal Social Worker and Leigh Keeble, Development Manager