PROPOSAL FOR A RESTRUCTURED SCHOOL SOCIAL WORK SERVICE IN A RESTRUCTURED EDUCATIONAL ENVIRONMENT

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1 PROPOSAL FOR A RESTRUCTURED SCHOOL SOCIAL WORK SERVICE IN A RESTRUCTURED EDUCATIONAL ENVIRONMENT I. Background and Problem Analysis The school social work program is supportive of the mission and objectives of the Baltimore city Public Schools. Since 1907 nationally, and 1936 locally, school social workers have collaborated with school personnel and community agencies to advance the purposes of education. When social-environmental factors within the school, home and community impact upon student learning and behavior, the school social worker intervenes to facilitate problem resolution, as well as to minimize the potential for more serious difficulties. Combining skill in dealing with people and knowledge of social, emotional, cultural and economic forces affecting students and schools, school social workers assist the learning process, prevent problem situations, and contribute to efforts to overcome barriers to learning. It is well known that many students enter schools daily from homes (or shelters) where there is little or no securit or structure and where families * are very dysfunct~onal. Other families may be wellfunctioning structurally, but dealing with various stresses -economic uncertainties, illnesses, relationship difficulties, child-care concerns, etc. It is also known that seemingly intact, happy families at all socio-economic levels, may be actually very dysfunctional with children suffering the shame and ravages of ~arental or relative alcoholism, drug use and abuse, ~ncest, neglect, physical or emotional maltreatment, mental illnesses, and other disruptions. Violence and crime also punctuate the lives of many children attending our schools, es~ecially exacerbating the frightening exper~ences encountered by those students living in deprived lower income households. Most children are ill equipped intellectually and emotionally to cope successfully with such unremittingly stressful situations. It is within the schools itself. that their inability to cope often Symptoms of such failures include manifests poor or under-achievement, difficulties concentrating and learning, * Family, as defined here, refers to a household, consisting of at least one adult and children, who function as_a unit and consider themselves

2 connected and mutually responsible for their welfare. school avoidance, peer and difficulties, psychosomatic authority illness, relationship depression, aggression and suicidal gestures and threats, among others. For a variety of reasons, many school systems, particularly those with a large concentration of students at risk, have found 1t increasingly difficult to reach these students and to move them beyond the negative circumstances affecting academic achievement. Communities and educators have been frustrated by what appear to be student, parent, and educator failures to make sustained improvements in achievement levels, attendance rates, drop-out statistics, and other indicators of school progress. The pressures of unrealistic expectations of schools to counteract social problems, coupled with lack of community fiscal and emotional support, have created extreme pressures on educational personnel. Educators are human bein9s also, dealing with their own personal and profess1onal issues. These issues, combined with the ~ressures and frustrations of teaching unrespons1ve students, dealing with dissatisfied parents, politicians and other educational stake-holders, have resulted in various indicators of severe stress and burn-out. These indicators include: a) b) c) rising incidents of allegations of staff abuse and neglect of students, as well as more documented reports of inappropriate discipline repeated reports by itinerant staff of observations of staff out-of-control behaviors - including yelling, name-calling, and verbal and physical abuse of students and numerous requests to school social workers by teachers and other staff for counseling help with personal issues and concerns II. Implications for A Restructured School system There are varied responses possible to the preceding problem analysis. from a social work A recommended perspective, initial response, will be described here. It is important, first, to make the obvious connections between the negative messages children -2-

3 receive at home and in schools, their responses to other people, as well as their feelings about themselves. A strong emotion often engendered by perceived rejection, when one's basic needs for affection, security and acceptance are not met, is anger. This hostility is sometimes turned inward resulting, in its most severe manifestation, in behavior such as self-mutilation, depression and even suicide. Hatred expressed towards others is less subtle, and may be observed in rebelliousness, physical aggressiveness, and various acts of destruction and violence. (There is a relationship between the escalating level of violence in our society and the level of violent assaults inflicted upon the psyches and bodies of the perpetrators in their youth.) While schools cannot control what occurs in the community, there are changes educators can make within the school environment to help counteract the negatives students find elsewhere. In fact. if educators are to be more successful in reaching students in an administratively restructured system. it is imperative that they restructure the human relationships within the school environment. Schools in which inter-personal relationships reflect warmth, caring, respect and concern for students will be schools where learning is more likely to take place, regardless of the management system. If children come from chaotic, non-nurturing homes into a school environment perceived to be disorganized, indifferent and re~ecting, children have a more difficult time believ1ng they can succeed. Motivation comes from caring and encouragement, as well as from wellstructured developmentally appropriate lessons in which daily success is possible. There are classrooms and schools where the relationships desired are the rule, rather than the exception. Students usually want to attend those classes, and parents tend to gravitate towards those teachers. In far too many instances, however, administrator and staff frustrations, discouragement and pressures have taken their toll - and extra efforts will be required to bolster the sagging egos and motivations of these personnel. Each school faculty, with support from resources such as the Professional Development Center, central office personnel and pertinent professionals, would benefit from evaluating its climate, the quality of its relationships with one another, its students and its parents. Each faculty can develop its own support ~roup, to encourage one another and to rejuvenate the 1nternal system in which it functions. Before one can -3-

4 change student reactions and ~arent behaviors, one must first change faculty att1tudes, beliefs and approaches. Students, ~arents and all support persons in a school sett1ng should be involved in a process of inquiry, focusing on perceptions of strengths and weaknesses in the relationships within each school. School social workers can assist ~ effectively in situations in which their work with students is geared more towards supplementing the efforts of educators. rather than compensating for the deficiencies of the classroom environment. The success of school restructurin~ will depend, in large measure upon diligent attent10n to another set of r's. Foremost is restoration of faculty energies, enthusiasm and belief in themselves and their abilities. A common ~oal of enhancing the learning environment, to make 1t more like an extended family, where children feel warmth, concern and commitment, can re-vitalize individuals. The results of a climate survey should not be used to assess blame; they can be a positive stimulus to united action and support of one another in pursuit of agreed upon goals. We have a very creative staff who can accomplish much when a mission and objectives are clearly defined, and the value is demonstrated by the degree of support provided. The desired level of change in school environments will require that educators be reflective. not reactive, in lookin~ inwardly first - at one's own attitudes and relat10nships with students, parents, colleagues, and with others. Such a change effort also will require that educators be responsive - not indifferent, to the concept that students in the 90's must be taught from a new set of assumptions and knowledge. In a world of angry and acting-out individuals, more of the same in schools is inevitable, unless a better model of human interactions is demonstrated to students by the adults to whom they look for direction. It will not be an easy task, but a start must be made - if there is to be hope for a less violence prone society. Finally, educators must be responsible - not projecting onto others blame for what is not being done. Each individual must be accountable for that for which he or she has responsibility. We are all interdependent; we are all vulnerable human beings, and we all have strengths that can bolster one -4-

5 another's weaknesses. If we can assume responsibility, individuall~ and collectively, for a more humane educational env1ronment for our students, we will also ensure our own futures. III. Current status of School Social Work programming and staffing -- The school social work ~rogram is designed to provide limited, short-term soc1al work services to and on behalf of infants, children, and developmental, social-emotional, youth whose behavioral and other characteristics place them Some eligible students may at risk of school not have responded failure. to prior efforts of educational alleviate the concern. and support personnel to Often, problems appear related to stressful or harmful home and environmental conditions. In many instances, the situations to school social workers require coordinated referred interactions with medical, mental health, socioeconomic and other community resources to effect change. sustained collaborative interventions are normally required to influence social and academic growth. While much of the work of the school social worker is problem-oriented, often of a severe and complex nature, preventive social work services also may be provided: --to promote student behaviors supportive of constructive values, goals and decision making --to improve home/school understandings, cooperation and mutual support of the student --to assist in the resolution of family/community conflicts that spill-over into student relationships in the school. Due to BCPS system mandates, as a result of a consent decree to provide educational and related supportive services to the special education population, school social workers have given priority to the needs of that population, as well as elementary and middle school students. A range of social work services, however, have been delivered to and on behalf of eligible ~opulations, within staff constraints. Such services 1nclude, but are not limited to: --Psyco-Social and Other Student/Family Assessments --Individual and Group Counseling --Staff Consultation and Teaming -5-

6 --Crisis Intervention (Individuals and schools) --Parent Consultation, Counseling and Training --Case Management and Collaboration --In-Service Staff Training --Referral, Liaison, and Coordination with Community Resources The social work staff consists of 64 school social workers *, including 61 regular staff (58.2 FTE) and 3 substitutes (FTE 1.2), who are retired school social workers who returned in this capacity. Staff is assigned to special programs and settings and 146 schools, primarily elementary, middle and special education schools. In the nine schools receiving special education services from the 2 day/per week SUbstitutes, general education students are not served. Otherwise, all eligible students may be referred for social work services in schools enrolling general education students. Fourteen school social workers are assigned full-time to schools: 5 are in severely emotionally handicapped (SEH) ~rograms or schools and 2 are in other special educat~on schools; 7 are assigned to Chapter I and Success for All schools. In addition, a school social worker is assigned to the pre-school ARD team, another is a part-time person assigned to consent decree mandated and social work program responsibilities; a third school social worker, assigned to the infant and toddler's program. works with parents and teachers at 4 sites, and performs tasks as ~art of the BCP's role in the interagency, coordinated ~nfant and toddler's program. Contractural services supplement mandated services provided to special education students. These services are provided primarily at the 32 schools without a regularly assigned school social worker. Contractural staff conduct psycho-social assessments of students suspected of/or determined to have a handicapping condition. Services also are contracted for the provision of IEP mandated related services to students requiring social work assistance to benefit from special education. * Projected to be in effect as of 2/24/92-6-

7 IV. Recommended Administrative structure for the School Social Work Services * --- Administrative Head Master Social School Worker Educational V Specialist Educational V Specialist IV IV School Social Workers School Social Workers Currently, the School Social Work Service operates as one of the services in the Office of Pupil Services, under the administrative leadership of a coordinator. The coordinator is a ps chologist by training and experience. One educat10nal specialist, a professional social worker, has performed leadership, managerial, supervisory and other functions, under a coordinator's administrative direction, for 14 years. Program development and standards setting, staff recruitment, hiring and training, community involvements and interagency collaboration, in addition to staff evaluation tasks are among the "other" functions performed by the specialist. Her knowledge of the field of social work and contacts with communit professional social workers, as well as univers1ty professionals in the field, have been invaluable in developing and maintaining a professional service. * School social workers are hired as educational staff (teacher-level), as are school psychologists, speech and language therapists, and others whose administrative leadership is central office based - while they are assigned as itinerant staff to schools. A few years ago, the status of school social workers was changed in the coding used for budgeting purposes, ass1gning them a new status as central office personnel. School psychologists, who were under the same Office of Pupil Services administration, were left under the original code, as were the speech and language technicians. School social workers as a discipline thus became more vulnerable to lay-offs and termination, as "central office" staff, rather than "educational staff." It is recommended strongly that this injustice be corrected and the same budgetary code status be -7-

8 assigned to school social workers as their comparable professional disciplines. There have been positives in the leadership provided by the coordinators assigned administrative responsibility for the service since the Baltimore city Public Schools eliminated the position of supervisor of the school social work service in its 1973 reorganization. The ~ositives may have been over-shadowed, however, by the 1ncalculable loss in staff self-esteem/morale over the years - as well as in pro~ram impetus and development. The values of the profess10n, practice standards and professional development, including u~ward mobility of the staff suffered. Ultimately, serv1ce delivery to students, parents and staff were affected. The chart above reflects a minimal level of administrative support deemed necessary to develop a school social work service delivery system capable of providing quality services to all eli~ible students and sustaining a staff of 64 persons - wh1ch needs to grow further. The level of secretarial and clerical support provided Services, this has service and others in the Office been appalling in its meagerness, of Pupil and has never been examined seriously by the top administrators. Additional help simply has been denied. Professional record-keeping and organizational standards of an Office of School Social Work Services will require close and immediate attention to this aspect of unit functioning in a restructured school system. V. Recommended Administrative Staff Credentials and Program Responsibilities * A. The administrative head of the school social work service will --possess minimally a Master's degree in social work with experience in supervision and management of staff in agencies serving children, youth or families, or equivalent experience. (Prefer experience in school social work and/or knowledge and related experience in education.) --report directly to the operational cabinet member res~onsible for the functioning of this and sim1larly situated units (i.e., psychological services, court and attendance services, guidance services, etc.) * Details provided for illustrative purposes only - not intended as job descriptions -8-

9 --assume responsibility for the overall administrative, planning, management, supervisory and monitoring functions attendant to a systemwide comprehensive program of school social work services --organize and implement all pro9ram components of school social work service del~very within the constraints of human and fiscal resources, to meet the mission and objectives of the Baltimore City Public Schools --provide consultation and work collaboratively with other offices and divisions within the system as well as community agencies to provide coordinated social work and other resource services to students and parents B. Two educational specialists will --possess Masters' degrees in clinical social work, with experience with children, youth and or families. (Experience as school social workers preferred, with supervisory and/or management experiences, or equivalent experiences ~n education or related fields.) --under the direction and supervision of the administrative head, perform designated tasks to assist in the formulation and implementation of a comprehensive, coordinated program of school social work services for students and families --design and implement a coordinated program of school social work services based upon system priorities and needs assessments: a) collaborate with school administrators, designated educational staff and school social workers to develop programs and services to meet school and system needs and objectives b) share administrative and pro9rammatic responsibilities for the soc~al work role in specialized programs such as the homelessness ~roject, pre-school programs, severely emot~onally handicapped programs, crisis support teams, response to violence and trauma intervention program, and contractural services -9-

10 --~rovide guidelines, policies and procedures to ~mplement a quality program of school social work staff training and development supervision, monitoring and evaluation --design and im~lement, in conjunction with the appropriate d~vision, a research and evaluation model to determine the effectiveness of the various school social work methodologies, to identify staff development needs and more effective intervention strategies --assist their supervisors with the planning and implementation of special services such as parent counseling and support groups in designated schools or sections of the city --work collaboratively with the staff in the Professional Development Center to develop and provide assistance in the conduct of in-service, system-wide training for educators, paraprofessionals and support staff in identified need areas such as child abuse and neglect, inter-personal communication skills, and discipline and management skills --represent the system on communit interdisciplinary teams and comm~ttees dealing with areas such as social services, mental health, health services, child advocacy, and related child welfare and education issues C. The master school social worker will --possess a Master's degree in clinical social work and experience as a school social worker --under the direction of the administrative head provide assistance to the administrators in the execution of various components of the school social work program --assume primary responsibility for the initial orientation and training program for newly-hired school social workers --provide special support and assistance to social workers determined to require additional assistance, as identified by the supervising educational specialist --assume staff responsibility for school social work committees such as March Social Work Month, staff development, the Creative Aids Resource -10-

11 Exchange grant funded project, the resource manual development group, and for educational support grou~s for staff working in SEH programs, as well as f~eld instructors --recruit school social workers to provide field instruction (internships) for 2nd year graduate social work students and to serve as the BCPS system liaison to regional schools of social work The structure pro~osed, an administrative head with social work train~ng and experience, 2 school social work specialists to provide supervisory, programmatic and administrative support, and a senior ~rofessional to assist and provide special~zed support, is minimal and below the professional standards expected of an organization of this size. The service has survived the last 14 years despite the debilitating lack of administrative staff and support. It is imperative that we acknowledge the emergency condition of our student population and that we address special needs more adequately. School social work values and skills can be an invaluable adjunct to educators' efforts to reclaim our youth. To do so will require acknowledging and supporting the need for a more viable re-structured service. Attached to this proposal is a document prepared by the National Council of State Consultants for School Social Work services, published in 1981, recommending staffing ratios according to several variables. It can be used as a guide in calculating a desired level of staffing for school social work programs. A total staff of 120 social workers is projected to provide the level of service minimally required to cover all schools and special programs. VI. In Defense of Central Office Authority for the School Social Work Program and staff Some educators believe that the assignment of school social workers to schools, giving principals evaluative responsibility, will enhance service responsiveness and consistency. Because of staff insufficiencies, social workers traditionally have been assigned to 3 or 4 schools, effectively diluting service delivery at individual schools. If adequate numbers of staff are retained, the ability of staff to respond more consistently to student needs will increase. -11-

12 Service responsiveness to schools' needs also is dependent on factors unrelated to evaluative responsibility. Social workers would like to respond to student needs identified by school administrators. However, BCPS system objectives have made adherence to mandates related to special education a priority. Man principals have objected to the amount of time soc~al workers must devote to the needs of special education students when they perceive other students' needs and issues to be a greater priority in their schools. The issue of school workers has serious administrative control of social implications for service delivery system-wide. Experiences from four general perspectives point out the dangers of a change from the present practice of central office evaluation res~onsibility (with input from school adm~nistrators.) a) The Predicament of Guidance Counselors These personnel traditionally have been evaluated by school administrators. As a consequence, it has been extremely difficult for central office personnel to institute and maintain a system-wide program of guidance services, consistent with Maryland State Department of Education guidelines and mandates. Tremendous efforts have been devoted to pursuing collaborative relationships with administrators. In too many instances, principal mandated tasks have continued to usurp the broader system and state mandates The potential for similar programmatic and management problems is great with such g shift of a system-wide counseling and support program such as the school social work program to local school control b) The Crisis support Team Experience Closely related to the preceding section is the experience of the central office administrators who collaborate when the crisis intervention team is called to res~ond to a school crisis. Psychologists and soc~al workers who have indicated an interest in serving can be called to serve on these teams when needed, as long as service does not interrupt a more ~ressing obligation. These staff persons d~scuss with their principals the fact that they have been required to serve in an emergency situation; -12-

13 and their judgment has been respected by their principals. Guidance personnel, however, must request permission from their principals to be released, and at the secondary level primarily, administrators often refuse to release them. This has occurred even in secondary schools that have benefitted from and praised the work of these volunteers. It has created such a problem in efforts to respond to schools' calls for crisis intervention that plans to address this dilemma administratively system-wide have been considered. It is apparent that the ability to respond in s c~s timely manner to crises in schools would be seriously jeopardized should school social workers also be assigned to the authority of school administrators. c) social Workers presently Assigned to School Payrolls While a few principals have exhibited admirable professionalism in their expectations of the social worker assigned, others are very controlling and protective of the workers' time. Releasing them to attend social workers' professional development activities and committee meetings has been problematic in some instances. It is recognized that a valid conflict exists when staff meetings are scheduled concurrently - so that negotiations are required. In a few instances, school administrators have perceived the "needs" of their schools to be paramount to the professional needs and obligations of the social workers, and have prevented or delayed their departure by sending parents in to see them or otherwise creating "needs." Such a priority should not have to be made in "needs." In addition, staff have been assigned to perform tasks such as cafeteria or dismissal dut, SUbstituting for a period or longer, ass1sting with the office telephone and other such responsibilities, because of lack of sufficient staff. In one recent situation, the control issue was so great that matters of space, privacy and telephone access, which could have been resolved, were not handled as the administrator could not tolerate the worker's openness regarding these matters. -13-

14 d) Impact on Professional Integrity and Effectiveness The final and most important concern relates to other expectations and demands made on social workers assigned to school pa rol!s that create impediments to building trust~ng~student, staff and parental relationships. Due to subtle and not so subtle pressures, inappropriate demands made byq some school administrators have ~laced social workers in the role of disciplinar~ans and assistant principals. The therapeutic, objective role that is the effective role of the helping profession is compromised when this occurs. students do not respond to the relationship, parents are not as open, and teachers are suspicious, and less open if they believe that the social worker is aligned with the administration. Human nature is such that training in appropriate roles, etc. will not be successful in overcoming the socialization process by which administrators are expected to "run their schools." In addition, in the sensitive matter of child abuse and neglect, school social workers in all settin9s have encountered considerable hostil~ty on occasions, when reporting laws have been honored and administrators and/or staff disagreed with the decision to report. Some staff have been ostracized, as a result - and accusations of disloyalty and not being "a team player" have been made. It is imperative if children are to be protected. and guality, objective school social work services are to be delivered, that school administrators not be assigned the ultimate resvonsibility for school social workers. The pol~tical pressures to do this are great but the practice wisdom of helping professionals should take precedence in order that children may be adequately served. Effective program management, development and responsiveness to changing needs require a strong centralized administration and collaboration with educators, as well as with constituents and all aspects of the community. In summary, there is a certain seductiveness about the school culture that can be detrimental to the role and effectiveness of the helping/consultant professional. It draws one into it. The unaware professional can easily lose perspective, clarity and objectivity - in -14-

15 an effort to win approval and acceptance from the school administrator and colleagues. While it is important to be "a part of the staff" in one sense, it is also vital for legitimacy to be "a little apart from" the school staff. It is extremely difficult to offer professional observations and comments that can be interpreted as critical to "a friend" or to object to a decision made by a powerful authority figure who controls one's evaluation. The proper balance of professional detachment and yet relatedness to the views of students, ~arents, and school staff, can be most effectivelr ma1ntained when the professional discipline reta1ns the ultimate authority over the professional service deliverr system. Concurrently, the service can be more read1ly responsive to over-all system needs and ob~ectives and redeployment can be more easily accompl1shedi with due regard for the maintenance of stability and consistency in assignments. Joan Y. Harris 2/27/92-15-

16 '., \.', ' "~on;l'l';' 'I The N lion~/1 couocu of Slate Consul/ants for School Soctot Work, SerViC~~I~SCvnlPlised of consultants and coo:dinators for school s~?,al work services in state departments of education throughout the Urlltod Slates. rhe Council meets annually and members communi.cate regularly rogarding issues thai affect education and schoo!,social ~ork. tn«foj/owing two papers aro a synthosis of, tile Councii s exoononce and expertise in two areas in which Council memlsers troauerutv receive questions.. c S I W k The National Council of State Consultants fc?rvct/ool oc.a, Of Services intends for these papers to initiate a nat~of}aj exchange o.f Ideas in the educalidllal commullily. We hope that this snlerchange will bdlh strengthen and broaden,tt~o fie/~ of school SOCIal wor~. The Co.uncll./s also interestod in obtammg direct feedback regarding the matenaf presented and the posilions teken in tho two papers. We urge you. to share your commonts and reactions with us. Please do so ~Y contactmg your stet«school Social W~rk Consultant or Vaughn Morrison, PreSident. Nalional Council ot State Consultants tor SChDDI soctet Work. Services Illinois Sla!e Board of Educetior: 100 North Fsrsl Street Springfield, Illinois I. Introduction II. STAFFING NEEDS FOR PROVIDtNG $CHOOL SOCIAL WORK SERVICES TO PUPILS by The Nntlonal Councll 01 State Consullants lor School Soclsl Work Services The National Council of Stale Consultants for School Social Work Services developed the following papbr 10 assist in determjni~g staffing levels for the provision of elfecti.vo levels of ~chool so~lal work services, As with any area of staffing, an ongoing question arises as to the number of service providers necessary to guarantee quality services to pupils. Simple formulas, by thcmseiy~s.' are not a SOllnd basis for allocation of staff. Program goals, specific populations to be ~erved, urban or rural selling, and federal impact issues are just a few of the factors which must b~ considered in a ne~ds assessment when determining what constitutes necessary staffing patterns. Oollnllion Social work services basically are those services relaled to a person's social. emotional and life adjustments ionsociety, ~?llooi social work services involve direct seryices to pupils and families by." competent, professional stall and include the following; /81/ $ !,k' t1ii&;::)$,f~~.zj;.;-~~..~:'b:~;.;.~,!:~~"~~~'i~"'''''\:. ~LrnM:u...;:~-JW>~~-J.li~~, ':"~"""i..j'_...ii.i.;"';'~~~ I! SCHOOL SOCIAL WORK JOURNAL i: A. Maintaining. as a primary focus, the right of all children 10 a ~~ free and appropriate education and to supportive services if needed. ii., r. I, "i\ ':.! 'r, II II., i i l j,, III: Job B. Counseling (group and individual) or casework with the pupil and family aimed at enhancing the pupil's educational experience, C. Identifying those factors in a child's living situation (home, school, and community) which impinge upon his/her experience in the educational setting, D. Mobilizing family, school, and community resources to enable the child to receive maximum benefit from his/hereducalional program. E. Preparing social developmental assessments, including cultural and adaptive characteristics which systematically appraise the degree to which alfective, rteveloprnental, environmenial. heallh and interpersonal relations factors affect a pupil's ability to learn. funcllon The scncot social worker's role requires expertise in the following areas: A: Problem Solving and Program Development - 1) developing, planning, and implementing (wilh other school stafl) educatienal programs for children with exceptional needs; 2) developing alternative programs for drop-outs, truants, dolinquents, gilted; 3) providing the school with essential information about farnily functioning. 8. Family Contacts - 1) Interviewing the family 10 assess problems altecting the child's eoucational adjustment; 2) wurking wilh parent groups to tacilitale their support in their children's school adjuslment; 3) alleviating family stress II) enable the child to functior:l more effectively in school and community.. C. School-Community Liaison - 1) linking school and community services; 2) helping school districts receive adequate support from social and mental health agencies; 3) advocating for new and improved community/school services to children by inyolvement in community planning bodies; 4) developing interagency agreements 10 p:"oyide comprehensive service~, D. GICUp Dynamics - 1) deyeloping school staff in-service training programs; 2) forming groups wilh children; 3) helping teachers in classroom mandgemcnt skills, E. On-gl)ing Individual Interventions -1) assisting the child in understanding and accepting selt; 2) helping the child develop appropriate social interaclion skillo; 3) helping the syslem respond effectively to each child's needs. IV. Determining Itafflng levels Despite declining enrollmont, children today are Increasingly victims 01 many socia! forces that negatively affoct their role as, ';.,.1,.,1 ;' ~.. rp;,1-

17 VOL. VI NO.1 rall»31 SCHOOL SOCIAL WORK JOURNAL students. The family is in a state of change and until it becomes stabilized, in whatever form, children's unmet physical and emotional needs will continue to interfere... ith their ability to learn anu adjust in school. In delermining the level of staffing for the provision of school social work services, numerous variables must be considered. Examples follow. A. Community characteristics population (size, socia-economic strata) resources (public or private, level of services available) lack of resources rural/u roan/suburban mobility of population (degree of transiency) unemployment rate incidence of single parent families B. Educational system characteristics delinquency rate availability and diversity of pupil services size of special education population extent of student pregnancy incidence of drop-outs program emphasis level of non-attendance federal program limitations, federal impact issues (bussing, integration, tlnances) size racial cornpositlon multi-lingual needs demngraphic diversity fiscal status C. Significant student popu.atior. problems end character.st.cs significant disruption in families student turnover one-parent families handicapping conditions... abuse and neglect substance abuse cases foreign-born families bilingual needs deviant social, emotional, and behavioral patterns D, Job requirements participating in pupil service team activities preparing evaluative reports/dictation of reports travel to homes, meetings at schools providing direct and Indirect services to children c.n~ families consultation wil:l louchers/adminl.nrators coordinating community and distrlct rcsoljl'c63 planning for and providing in service to stat! availability of adequate space and resources availability of adequate clerical services Staffing levels may vary from district to district and even from building to building within a school district. Schoo.! districts may want to consider review of stalf patterns and levels on a yearly basis in order to provide fair and equitable services to all children, The variety and levels of effecti ve school social work interventions are determined by the number and characteristics of thu populations served. Consequently, the following chart demonstrates possibie activities in relation to suggested ratios and specific populations served. level of Tr.lnlng (R.c:ommend.d) MSW MSW MSW PROFILE OF SCHOOL SOCIAL WORK SERVICES School Sodsl School WorkerlSludenl Populllllon(,) Rallo Served 1/2000 Total school population with no special ccncennattcn Tolal school population with poverty concentration Total school population with special eoucattcn concentration Total school population with special ecucaucn and poverty concentrations Total school population with special education, poverty. and EHecllve level' Service (Recommended) of 1. Crisis Inter vennon 2. Social Developmental Assessment 1. Crisis Intervention 2. Social Developmental Assessment 3. Teacher Consultation co 4. Outside Agency Relerral r 1. Social Developmental Assessment 2. Teacher Consultation 3. Crisis tntervenuon 4. Outside Agency Referral 5. Hcme-Schoot-Ccmmurnty Liaison 6. Stall tnservtce 7. School Social Work Program Planning and Evatuancn 1. Social Developmental Assessment ~ 2. Teacher Consultation 3. Crisis Intervention 4. Outside Agency Referral 5. Educational System Assessment and Program Development 6. Home-Schaal-Community liaison 7. Stall tnservrce a. School Social Work Program Planning and Evaluation 1. Social Developmental Assessment 2. Teacher Consultation 3, Crisis Intervontion 47 1/6

18 !S007 REV. 01/73

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