DSCO Handbook

Implementing the role of the Designated Social Care Officer (DSCO) for SEND

Since 2014 and the implementation of the Children and Families Act the Council for Disabled Children (CDC) has been exploring the role of Social Care across the SEND system as part of our role as Strategic Reform Partner to the Department for Education (DfE).

After a series of regional Action Learning Sets held in 2017/18 the development of the role of the DSCO was identified as one of three themes to be developed in more detail through national Accelerated Working Groups (AWGs).

CDC have been exploring the ways that local areas have been developing their approaches to ensuring high quality social care input and engagement with the Education, Health and Care needs assessment and planning process, and the wider SEND framework and we have been working to map and develop the DSCO role through the existing online forum and through the development of a national community of practice.

Due to a range of regional and national virtual development sessions, at the time of writing we have 160 members in the community of practice.

This handbook covers:

  • What is a DSCO?
  • Development of the DSCO role
  • Developing a theory of change
  • Job description and person specification