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Through investing in our teams and our enhanced preventative services, providing an extensive learning and development offer, ensuring effective and reflective supervision and implementing our new social care case work system, we believe we are creating a working environment where you can help us deliver the improved life choices and life chances for our most vulnerable children and young people.

Merton’s Practice Model

Practice model diagram

Social Work Academy Merton

The Social Work Academy Merton (SWAM) focuses upon the learning and development of social workers and other staff in Merton Children's Social Care. Our academic partner is Kingston University.

The academy focuses upon local and national social work issues as they affect our entire workforce and its' portal can be accessed by all our staff.  Additionally parts of our academy will eventually be accessible to individuals and organisations outside of the London Borough of Merton with these parts specifically focusing on national developments as they affect the social work workforce.

The Dean of the Academy is our Principal Social Worker and Assistant Director Paul Angeli, and the Head of the academy is Paul Lawrence, Workforce and Practice Development Manager. Our academy is governed by our Social Work Board, which includes members from different grades within our workforce, our academic partner and representatives from the voluntary sector. The academy also has close links with our HR Business Partner.


SWAM has twelve faculties which embrace everything we deliver for our workforce; our aspirations for our workforce; and the operation of the Academy:

  • Faculty 1 - Social Work Students
  • Faculty 2 - Newly Qualified Social Workers (NQSW) and Assessed and Supported Year in Employment (ASYE)
  • Faculty 3 - Continuing Professional Development (CPD)
  • Faculty 4 - Learning, Development and Training
  • Faculty 5 - Workforce Development
  • Faculty 6 - Leadership Management
  • Faculty 7 - Jobs/Recruitment
  • Faculty 8 - Evidence-Informed Practice, Knowledge and Skills
  • Faculty 9 - Quality Assurance
  • Faculty 10 - Policy, Practice and Information
  • Faculty 11 - Structure, Finance and Communications
  • Faculty 12 - Partnerships