14 March, 2017 # News

Probation Institute Practitioner Conference

Announcing the Probation Institute Practitioner Conference on 13th June at Sheffield Hallam University. Registration details and Programme to follow.  Join now for a reduced rate...

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14 February, 2017 # News

Speech by Liz Truss 13th Feb

You can read the full speech here. The Probation Institute is disappointed by the lack of understanding about the impact on change of size of the prison population. We welcome the committment to improving mental health provision in the CJS. We would have liked to see greater regard for the huge daily efforts of probation and rehabilitation and at least an acknowledgement of the initial findings of the Lammy Review of racial bias...

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6 February, 2017 # News

Probation Services for Armed Forces Veterans under Supervision

Today we are launching the Report on Provision for Armed Forces Veterans under Probation Supervision, at Resource for London,  N7. We expect a high turn out of armed services and criminal justice organisations to help us to plan the next steps in our important project to strengthen and expand appropriate services for ex armed services personnel under supervision. The report was produced for the Probation Institute by CCJS. The project, funded by the Forces in Mind Trust continues throughout 2017/18...

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6 February, 2017 Professional Development

Trailblazer Apprenticeship Level 3

The Employer Development Group for the Level 3 Trailblazer Apprenticeship holds its second formal meeting on 15th February. The project first develops the  Training Standard for the Core Role – Probation Services and Rehabilitation Practitioner. We then develop the Assessment Standard. The core role has been mapped fully against the revised Level 3 Probation Diploma as well as new roles required by CRCs and the voluntary sector.  We will be inviting potential providers of training and assessment to a meeting in March to begin preparing for delivery...

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Probation Institute CEO Blog

August 2016

This month the Probation Institute says good bye to Savas Hadjipavlou, CEO since the Institute opened in 2014. Savas successfully set up the Probation Institute as a membership organisation, owned and directed by our members. We wish him well for the future.

The Board have appointed me to lead and manage the Probation Institute to drive forward the future direction. In taking this role I am working closely with Professor Paul Senior Chair of the Probation Institute. Some of you with long memories may recall that Paul and I shared, with others, an earlier challenge nearly 20 years ago in which we succeeded in retaining probation training in higher education despite pretty fierce opposition. That was a long time ago and much has changed since.

Returning to the Probation landscape after 12 years in a senior management role in Police Training with the National Policing Improvement Agency and the College of Policing I am reminded but still surprised by both the differences and the similarities. The proportionate difference in central funding is massive and still deflects criminal justice priorities away from crime prevention and rehabilitation towards detection, investigation and arrest. In spite of, or perhaps because of this, creative alliances between policing and probation rely heavily on the initiative and energy of individuals and struggle to achieve sustainable funding. I read the EHRC report on eliminating all forms of racial discrimination with real sadness; “As well as being more likely to be a victim of hate crime, people from ethnic minority communities and migrants are much more likely to experience disadvantage in the criminal justice system”.

Our ambition and vision for the Probation Institute today is much wider and more radical. Our ambition for consistent, high quality standards must now include all practitioners and managers in Probation, Rehabilitation and Resettlement; in NPS, CRCS, voluntary organisations, private companies, prisons or those managing offenders in policing roles. We want to be the Professional Body and Regulatory Body for everyone working or volunteering to help individuals to stop offending and lead fulfilling lives in positive relationship to others.

I see the role of the Probation Institute to reach out to practitioners, managers and leaders; to work together to set standards of competence, learning and research, to promote qualifications and to speak up for professional practice. Our ambition must be strong and radical because this occupational group is now very widely dispersed and urgently needs regulating to meet standards.The Probation Institute is ready to become the Regulatory Body for Probation, Rehabilitation and Resettlement.

In proposing this I want to build on our achievements in the first two years – the Code of Ethics, the Professional Development Framework, joint projects with partner organisations and position papers to list just a few. All our activity must be relevant and important to public, private and charitable organisations; we can’t afford to neglect knowledge, skills and values for any groups. Our Professional Development Framework seeks to raise and recognise competence and strengthen performance in all roles. The Trailblazer Apprenticeship which we are leading with CRCs and voluntary organisations sets out a single, funded standard of competence, learning and qualification for a Rehabilitation Practitioner at the equivalent to the PSO grade, in all types of organisation.  I am convinced that an independent Regulatory Body is the only possible mechanism for setting and achieving the essential standards and consistency where responsibilities have become so devolved to plural groups of employers.

A Regulatory Body would be independent of government, it would have representation from higher and further education, practitioners, trade unions, employers, awarding organisations, sector skills councils and representatives of government departments. It would set levels of competence and qualifications for all practitioner and management roles, and maintain the Professional Register. This would leave the trade unions free to represent their members, and to negotiate pay and conditions of service, collaborating with the Regulatory Body but free to act on behalf of their members. There would be strategic interfaces and joint projects with other bodies. The sector as a whole would be stronger because it could demonstrate consistency, clarity and confidence in professional practice.

This project to establish a Regulatory Body needs to move forward in Autumn 2016. As we drive this forward my priorities will also be to continue to increase our membership, to be the professional voice for practice and learning in Probation, Rehabilitation and Resettlement, to work with our partner organisations in joint projects, and ensure that our offer to members is clear, relevant and timely. I will be writing a blog regularly to keep up to date with our activity and look forward to readers’ views.


Helen Schofield

Acting Chief Executive

August 2016