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School Social Worker Procedures

Today: 9/19/17

Schedule of Meetings

All Attendance Child Study Meetings will be held at school on the designated day.

IF THE PARENTS DO NOT ATTEND THE MEETING, the school will mail the results of the meeting to parent(s). The School Social Worker will deliver the results of a second Attendance Child Study meeting to the home of parent(s) when court action is expected.  A copy of screen A15 and the intervention form must be attached.  

Community Agency

The School Social Worker’s work in the community is to convene, mediate and interpret.  These roles are vital in getting maximum benefits from all community services.  The School Social Worker helps to develop a rapport between agencies and clients. 

Collaboration with Agencies

The School Social Worker is responsible for interpreting the program to his/her individual schools and functions as a liaison between the community and the schools.  The principals, guidance counselors and administrative deans are assuming the major role in acquainting the School Social Worker with the problems of the children in the school.  The School Social Worker should have total involvement in a case where their services are used.

Beside the parents, the teacher is the most important person in the child’s life and inevitably retains responsibility for educating the child, despite problems which make this process more difficult. 

The School Social Worker’s work within the school is much more effective when there is a positive interaction with the classroom teacher.  Discussing various problems with the School Social Worker may help the teacher to gain a different perspective and to help clarify his/her feelings and attitudes about a child.  Increased understanding between the School Social Worker and the classroom teacher enables both to work together to develop appropriate plans and actions for helping children with problems.

The School Social Worker plays an integral part in functioning with other members of the school’s special services, including  psychologists, nurses, counselors, speech clinicians and other specialists.  As a result of this cooperative effort, there should be a spirit of mutual respect, understanding and appreciation for each other’s role in order to deliver coordinated, efficient and effective services to children.

Preface

The American people believed that education should be iniversal in order for our society to be perpetrated; thus, the 1642 Compulsory Education Act and the 1852 compulsory attendance law were passed.

Educators realized that if all children were to be educated, there was a need for a varied curricula and other educational services to meet the needs and interests of all the children and develop an understanding of the children, their families and the impact of the community on the students' educational development.

The Escambia County School District is acutely aware of this impact and seeks to counter the impact through the services of specially trained professionals. The Schpp; Social Workers serve as an extension of the schools to reach out into the community to assist students who may encounter educational, social, or emotional problems.

The early emphasis of these services was on truancy and non-attendance. As in most other states, Florida and Escambia County School Social Workersplace emphasis on identifying and correcting the causes of non-attendance and contributing to a satisfactory adjustment of problems. Prevention is the operative word in the Department of School Social Workers.

School Social Workers assist students in both the school and family environment. They provide assistance to administrators and teachers in providing the best possible learning environment for students in order that each may develop to his/her optimum potential. 

Needs and Problems of Children

We believe that every child is a unique being. We also believe that in addition to basic needs, there are other problems unique to each child.  The Social Worker's work is deisigned to supplement, not duplicate, the services of the classroom teacher.  There are basic needs and problems common in all children that may involve referrals to appropriate agencies.

ATTENDANCE PROBLEMS

  • Truancy
  • Illness
  • Failure to enroll in school
  • Parental neglect
  • Drop-outs

EDUCATIONAL PROBLEMS

  • Repeated failure
  • Inability to reach potential
  • Lack of initiative
  • Inability to see value in school

HOME PROBLEMS

  • Parental neglect, rejection, deprivation or over protection
  • Unrealistic goals set by parents
  • Child abuse
  • Sexual abuse
  • Sibling rivalry

PHYSICAL PROBLEMS

  • Parental inability/Neglect to recognize disabilities
  • Parental inability/Neglect to seek professional care

ECONOMIC PROBLEMS

  • Need for food, clothing, and shelter
  • Need for financial assistance

BEHAVIOR AND PERSONALITY PROBLEMS

  • Failure to adjust and relate to authority
  • Uncontrolled hostility/Anger management

BIOLOGICAL NEEDS

  • Food, clothing, shelter, safety
  • Sexual role
  • Sensory
  • Motor

PSYCHOLOGICAL NEEDS

  • Love and relationships
  • Security
  • Self-esteem/Self-worth
  • Order and meaning
  • Adequacy and competence

PROBLEMS RELATED TO PEERS

  • Bullying and intimidation
  • Poor impulse control
  • Attention-seeking

PROBLEMS RELATED TO SELF

  • Daydreaming
  • Anxiety
  • Frequent crying
  • Social withdrawal
  • Atypical behavior
  • Feelings of inadequacy
  • Poor self-esteem and/or self-worth
  • Drug experimentation and abuse
  •  Threatened and attempted suicide

Facilitating Strategies

INSERVICE TRAINING

Inservice training takes place through professional School Social Workers meetings, active involvment with inservice programs of other disciplines and through planned inservice components in areas of interest to the department.

CONFIDENTIALTY

We believe that every child should be given the maximum opportunity to succeed. We believe in dealing with information related to the child in a professional manner.

Truthful recognitions of our limitations of confidentiality are made known to the student as needed.

RESEARCH AND EVALUATION

Research and evaluation are needed to determine if, and to what extent, appropriate services are being rendered to the students. Constantly changing conditions require a continuous assessment, which can reduce wasted effort and lead to a program that will meet the needs more effectively. The School Social Worker weill be able to meet the changing needs of the students and answer questions posed by parents, school personnel and other stakeholders.

Financial need for well-planned, adequately staffed program may be justified through research and evaluation.

Research and evaluation should assist the School Social Work Program and community services to compliment each other, to avoid duplication of services and to point out the need for further services.

Attendance Referral Procedures

Prior to referral: The school shall contact the parent/gaurdian daily for each unexplained absence. See Rights and Responsibly Handbook.

An Attendance Child Study Meeting MUST be held after five (5) unexcused absences within a calendar month or ten (10) unexcused absences within a 90-calendar-day-period and prior to generating a refferal to the School Social Worker. All referrals MUST be completed by the prcincipal or his/her designee.

Introduction to Services

Since it is part of the schools' function to provide children with varied backgrounds and intelligence with experiences which will help them become responsible citizens, the School Social Workers assist the schools with this responsibilitiy. Their services to the school utilize their

  • knowledge and awareness of human behavior;
  • knowledge of the home and environmental pressures that keep the child from using the school experiences in a positive way;
  • knowledge and awareness of underlying motivation of behavior; and
  • ability to assess emotional and social factors that hinder learning.

The guidelines and information presented herein are provided for those who are concerned with the problems of school-age children. The School Social Workers' desire is that the use of this manual will enhance the understanding of their rolw in the total educational process.
 

Function of the Social Worker

PREVENTION

In conjunction with the school designee, early identification of attendance, emotional and adjustment problems are primary objectives of the School Social Worker.  Preventative measures are more effective when the problem child can be identified in kindergarten through third grade rather than later in the intermediate grades.

The children who are the disruptive, under-achieving and withdrawn are a few examples of cries for help.  If these children do not have their problems recognized and treated early, they will not be successful as students.  School Social Workers may help these early identified students by assisting them in developing a sense of pride.  As a result, they can mature adequately to their potential as a well-rounded individual.  The School Social Worker is available for consultation with school personnel when there are problems with a specific child.

Casework Services

On all economic and cultural levels, there are children who have problems that impede their school progress.  The School Social Worker looks at each child and his/her problems individually.  When the problem has been identified, the School Social Worker seeks to determine and employ assistance.  Sometimes more than one method may need to be employed.  Problems are handled by School Social Workers and/or other agencies until there is no longer a need for services.

Parents’ cooperation is vital in helping students solve their problems.  Many of the problems at school grow out of reactions to problems at home.  The School Social Worker assists parents in understanding their child and the problems of the child as the school views them.  The parent, in turn, shares his/her insights and gives basic background information, such as the child’s needs, abilities and personality.  Some parents are uncooperative until the School Social Worker exhibits a genuine concern for the child’s welfare.  Sometimes this child’s welfare has to be considered over and above the parents’ desires or wishes.

Attendance Child Study Meeting

An Attendance Child Study Meeting is an intervention and must be given sufficient time to determine progress before generating a School Social Worker referral or court referral.

After five (5) unexcused absences within a calendar month or ten (10) unexcused days in a ninety (90) calendar-day-period, the school will schedule a mandatory Attendance Child Study Meeting. 

The school is responsible for mailing notification to the parent/guardian of scheduled meeting.

A court referral may be completed after fifteen (15) unexcused absences in a ninety (90) calendar-day-period if other prerequisites for court referral have been met.

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