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Case study: Department for Education Teaching Partnerships

Client: Department for Education

Date: April – June 2015

Challenge faced by the client:

Training social workers is a key issues for the future of local public services. Teaching Partnerships (TPs) - established by the DfE - are consortia involving the local authorities, universities and colleges, as well as voluntary sector organisations, and are focused on testing and refining innovative approaches to delivering training for student and qualified social workers. The DfE required support to get TPs up-and-running.

Our support:

Mutual Ventures - working with Deloitte LLP - provided support to the Department’s 'Teaching Partnership' early adopter programme. We provided support to eight shortlisted Teaching Partnership consortia to help them prepare a bid to DfE for funding and then provided detailed feedback on each to assist the department with funding decisions.

The Greater Manchester Teaching Partnership was one of the successful bidders. The initial bid was for £450k of funding but the partnership, if successfully established, would control a much larger budget. Our coach provided the following support:

  • Budget planning – support to build a financial model which identified all costs associated with the implementation and early running of the partnership and profiling when these costs would be incurred. Our coach also worked with the team to encourage, identify and quantify contributions (financial and in-kind) which the partnership organisations could make.

  • Implementation planning – this involved a detailed breakdown of the actions needed to set-up and partnership including: establishing formal governance; getting the learning centre (which was to be at the heart of the partnership) up and running; recruiting the required staff; and putting performance monitoring processes in place.

  • Governance and partnership agreement – there were a wide range of organisations involved in the partnership so support was provided to agree roles and responsibilities, particularly around funding and responsibilities in each development area. Our coach also helped develop a memorandum of understanding between the partnership organisations.

  • Bid Drafting – our support focused on ensuring the ideas of the partnership were presented in as clear and transparent a way as possible and within the guidelines set out by DfE.

Paul Harper, DfE Teaching Partnerships Lead, provided the following feedback on our support: “The feedback we have received from partnerships has been full of praise for the ways in which coaches have engaged with all the Teaching Partnerships. The support offered has been referred to by one TP as exceptional and all the partnerships felt that their submissions were stronger as a result of the support and constructive challenge provided by their coaches….the initial workshop provided great opportunity for partnerships to understand better the aims of the project…It was very heartening to be part of that and to see the different partnerships working together on their ideas.” Paul Harper, Team Leader, Social Work Reform Unit, DfE

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