I am currently training as a supervisor with the Centre for Supervision Training and Development Bath and offer my services on a low cost basis as a supervisor in training. If you have questions about this, please get in touch below.
I see a supervision contract as a fluid agreement between myself and my supervisees and offer the information below as an example of the information I include when agreeing contracts with my supervisees. I am open to changing anything initially agreed if it is mutually beneficial to do so.
Medium of therapy (e.g. online, telephone, in person) will be agreed during initial discussion along with payment for sessions. I ask that payment for sessions be made in advance through bank transfer and details are given to supervisees when an initial session is booked. Time and date of sessions are agreed when initial contact is made and subsequent sessions can be at a regular day and time thereafter or booked at the end of the previous session. I ask for notice of at least one week for cancellations and expect payment if sessions are cancelled within the week. There is no charge for sessions if I am away and no charge if we have discussed my supervisee’s absence. If a supervisee misses multiple sessions, I will raise this as a concern due to the importance of supervision and the requirement of supervision for registration (e.g. BACP, 2018; UKCP, 2018).
Content of Sessions
It is helpful to know how my supervisees wish to use their sessions. What clients will be brought, are they from a specific practice (e.g. private, from a a service) and whether the supervisee would like to bring non-client material is all helpful to know. Of primary importance is that my supervisees feel safe and secure to bring whatever content they want to sessions and do not feel judged in what they say. I think it is important for supervision to be a place where supervisees can be comfortable to bring whatever is on their mind, including issues where they feel they have made a mistake or are feeling shame. I do not see supervision as a place where I give my supervisees the "right" answers, but as a place where they find their own.
I see supervision not only as exploration of the supervisee’s client work, but also their working life in general and how their work might be affected by events outside of the consulting room. Particular attention needs to be paid to the supervisee’s wellbeing and it may be appropriate to suggest the supervisee begin personal therapy, or discuss a particular issue in their current therapeutic sessions, though I would never dismiss or shut down a supervisee’s exploration of their personal difficulties. Although not therapy, the supervisee and supervisor cannot help but bring themselves into the supervisory relationship and the supervisee is bound to be affected by events outside of the therapy space.
I keep strict confidentiality within sessions (excepting my own supervisor) and would only break confidentiality in extreme circumstances: if there is a danger to life; if there is a breach of client safety where immediate action is required (in line with BACP, 2018); or if I am required to do so by a UK court of law. My home office is private and quiet and I use an earpiece to hear and speak to my supervisees; it would also be appropriate for in person sessions for the same reasons. I have a white noise machine which helps to ensure that I am not overheard, though my house is typically empty when I conduct sessions.
I prefer to work in a collaborative way with my supervisees, not as an expert, but as another perspective on the dilemmas my supervisors face with my own experience and understandings. It is helpful to know what type of relationship my supervisees are looking for in sessions and what support I can provide to benefit their development. How can I help you learn?
The supervisee or the agency you work with have ultimate clinical responsibility for your clients wellbeing, but I myself as an extra safeguard. I would expect you as the supervisee to complete any referrals to specialist services if deemed appropriate. I understand that some training organizations require trainees’ supervisors to hold clinical responsibility for client work so I would only take on a trainee if there was absolute clarity as to where responsibility lies and what safeguards are in place to protect myself and my supervisees. Training organizations may require supervisees to provide a training report which I would complete with the agreement of my supervisee.