Cardiff Council Update: 02 August 2022

Here is our latest update, covering: Willows High becomes first Cardiff secondary schools to receive prestigious UNICEF UK award; inspection commends Cardiff Youth Justice Service; and grants now available to students interested in a career in social work.


Willows High becomes first of Cardiff's secondary schools to receive prestigious UNICEF UK Award

Willows High School has been awarded the Silver Rights Respecting School Award (RRSA) by the UK Committee for UNICEF, for its commitment to promoting and realising children's rights and encouraging adults, children and young people to respect the rights of others in school.

The award recognises those schools that make excellent progress towards embedding the principles of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child into its ethos, curriculum and at the heart of a school's planning, policies and practice. A Rights Respecting School is a community where children's rights are learned, taught, practised, respected, protected and promoted.

In its report, UNICEF UK noted that Willows High School pupils had a very good understanding of rights and were able to list a selection of articles and link them to life experiences, understanding that rights were not only universal and unconditional, but indivisible, inalienable and inherent.

More highlights from the report include:

  • Staff and pupils reported that relationships across the school are positive and founded on dignity and a mutual respect and that a positive culture is reinforced with regards to kindness, aspirations and resilience. These are taught through assemblies, daily routines and a deliberate effort by staff and pupils to model positive examples to the Willows community.
  • The school places children's social and emotional wellbeing high on its agenda and pupils discussed the positive impact that Wellbeing Officers in the school have. Pupils are free to talk about their mental health and if they are struggling with anything.
  • Pupils felt confident that they had a voice in school, and that their views are taken seriously. They discussed how the Pupil Leadership group has been created.
  • Parents are kept informed via the school newsletter and social media and a Family and Community Engagement officer assists the school and the community develop strong relationships.


Read more here:


Inspection commends Cardiff Youth Justice Service

A new official report into standards at Cardiff's Youth Justice Service (YJS) has identified significant improvements in many areas.

Among the improvements noted in the report are:

  • A large reduction in those coming into the justice system as the YJS finds better ways to prevent risk and providing challenge and support
  • A reduction in reoffending by children
  • A reduction in the use of prison sentences as the judiciary now has confidence in the local services' ability to oversee community orders


The report, by Her Majesty's Inspectorate of Probation (HMIP), was published today and comes after a three-week review of the YJS, which works with children aged 10-18 in Cardiff to help prevention of offending, reducing offending by those children in the system and make sure custody is only used when necessary.

Read more here:


£10m in grants now available to students interested in career in social work

Cardiff Council has endorsed a £3.5m package of support designed to give social work students a financial boost during and after their studies.

The Welsh Government's enhanced Social Work Bursary - a 50% increase on the current bursary - will be available for both undergraduate and postgraduate students in Wales and is worth almost £10m over the next three years.

From September, eligible graduates studying for the social work degree will be able to access up to £3,750 a year over the three-year course, in addition to funding already available through Student Finance Wales.

Postgraduates will be able to access £12,715 per year of their two-year course, reducing the loan that students need to repay after their studies.

In a joint statement Cabinet members Cllr Ash Lister and Cllr Norma Mackie, who job share the Social Services portfolio, said: "Social workers are a key part of the work that we do at the council, supporting people to take charge of their own lives and making a real difference to our communities right across the city.

"The pandemic has added pressures to what is already a demanding profession, and the enhanced bursaries will provide much-needed financial support for social work students.

We welcome the additional funding and would encourage anyone considering a career in Social Work to look into the training opportunities available."

For more details on how to access the funding, visit: