National School Social Work Week is March 2-8.
Christina Houck, Assistant Director, Mental Health and Partnerships, meets with the District 287’s Social Workers to create and share common best practices across District 287, ensuring that services are consistent.
“We are so proud of our School Social Workers!” Houck said this week. (read more)
Houck went on to explain why Social Workers are important to District 287 programs.
“School social work is a specialized area of practice within the broad field of the social work profession. School social workers bring unique knowledge and skills to the school system and the student services team. In particular, School Social Workers are trained in mental health concerns, behavioral concerns, positive behavioral support, academic and classroom support, consultation with teachers, parents and administrators as well as with individual and group counseling techniques," Houck told a group of adminstrators this week.
"School social workers are instrumental in furthering the mission of the schools which is to provide a setting for teaching, learning, and for the attainment of competence and confidence," Houck continued. "School social workers are hired by school districts to enhance the district's ability to meet its academic mission, especially where home, school and community collaboration is the key to achieving student success.”
We asked our Principals about the roles social workers play in student learning.
"Students at the WEC often have very complex mental health needs. Our fantastic school social workers often go above and beyond in helping meet these student needs. Thanks for all that you do on a daily basis!” -Jody Delau, West Education Center
“School social Workers support our students by providing resources and assisting them with their overall social development. They encourage students who may appear disengaged to re-engage in school and teach skills to help students learn to calm down when they are agitated. Social Workers are an invaluable resource to our schools.” -Tonya Allen, North Education Center Alternative
“Having worked in an ALC without social workers as part of the staff and now with social workers on the ALC staff, the hope has increased and students needs are addressed in a more comprehensive and thorough manner. ALC students certainly need high quality academics and guidance as they plan their futures, but they also need social worker support in addressing issues that are getting in their way of being successful in school and life. Hats off to our dedicated 287 social workers. I truly appreciate the work you do.” -Lea Dahl, ALC Operations Collapse this story
“As a liaison between parents and classrooms, the social workers can often help with the difficult conversations with parents which preserves the relationship between teacher and parent. Often the SW is the nonjudgmental confidant the parent or student can talk to without fear of outside agency intervention. They are seen as a valuable support to students, staff and families. They connect and facilitate collaboration among educational teams. When necessary, they are the link to protective and other services for families in crisis." -Amy Sward, North Education Center