1. School social workers are tasked with addressing the social and psychological issues that students face.
By helping students cope with and overcome their social and psychological struggles, school social workers strive to give children the best possible chance at succeeding within school.
2. School social workers provide services for students dealing with a wide range of difficulties.
From academic or attendance problems, to psychological or mental disabilities, to environmental problems such as homelessness and poverty, to sexual orientation and bullying, school social workers are very well equipped to handle nearly any situation that a student may be dealing with.
3. Counseling, crisis intervention, support groups, and prevention programs are common approaches used by school social workers.
These social workers must be highly skilled at creating innovative and creative solutions to complex problems, which allows them to find the best intervention for each student and situation to be successful.
4. School social workers are members of an interdisciplinary team that is critical to ensuring the success of students.
This team may consist of teachers, parents, school psychologists, administrators, local police, and other community members. School social workers and these team members work together for the success of each student, as well as to form disciplinary policies, provide support services, and crisis management.
5. The work of a school social worker extends far beyond the walls of a school.
School social workers make sure that students have a home life that is conducive to academic and social success. This can involve arranging transportation for necessary services, enrolling students in programs to provide adequate food or clothing, conducting home visits to ensure a safe home environment, or even contacting Child Protective Services if necessary.
6. School social workers often create programs and services to address the current needs of their school as a whole.
For example, school social workers may be responsible for giving anti-bullying lessons throughout the year as a preventative measure, or may hold drug awareness assemblies to deal with a rising drug problem.
7. The responsibilities of a school social worker can vary greatly depending on the location of the district and the needs of the students.
School social workers in a rural community may spend a lot of time conducting home visits, arranging transportation to services or bringing services to the community, and mending bonds within the community. On the other hand, a school social worker in an urban community may spend more time dealing with truancy, violence and drug prevention, and trauma.