Child, Family, and School Social Workers

Description

Provide social services and assistance to improve the social and psychological functioning of children and their families and to maximize the family well-being and the academic functioning of children. May assist parents, arrange adoptions, and find foster homes for abandoned or abused children. In schools, they address such problems as teenage pregnancy, misbehavior, and truancy. May also advise teachers.

Tasks

  • Counsel individuals, groups, families, or communities regarding issues including mental health, poverty, unemployment, substance abuse, physical abuse, rehabilitation, social adjustment, child care, or medical care.
  • Interview clients individually, in families, or in groups, assessing their situations, capabilities, and problems, to determine what services are required to meet their needs.
  • Serve as liaisons between students, homes, schools, family services, child guidance clinics, courts, protective services, doctors, and other contacts, to help children who face problems such as disabilities, abuse, or poverty.
  • Maintain case history records and prepare reports.
  • Counsel parents with child rearing problems, interviewing the child and family to determine whether further action is required.
  • Refer clients to community resources for services such as job placement, debt counseling, legal aid, housing, medical treatment, or financial assistance, and provide concrete information, such as where to go and how to apply.
  • Consult with parents, teachers, and other school personnel to determine causes of problems such as truancy and misbehavior, and to implement solutions.
  • Counsel students whose behavior, school progress, or mental or physical impairment indicate a need for assistance, diagnosing students' problems and arranging for needed services.
  • Address legal issues, such as child abuse and discipline, assisting with hearings and providing testimony to inform custody arrangements.
  • Develop and review service plans in consultation with clients, and perform follow-ups assessing the quantity and quality of services provided.
  • Provide, find, or arrange for support services, such as child care, homemaker service, prenatal care, substance abuse treatment, job training, counseling, or parenting classes, to prevent more serious problems from developing.
  • Arrange for medical, psychiatric, and other tests that may disclose causes of difficulties and indicate remedial measures.
  • Collect supplementary information needed to assist client, such as employment records, medical records, or school reports.
  • Administer welfare programs.
  • Recommend temporary foster care and advise foster or adoptive parents.
  • Supervise other social workers.
  • Lead group counseling sessions that provide support in such areas as grief, stress, or chemical dependency.
  • Place children in foster or adoptive homes, institutions, or medical treatment centers.
  • Evaluate personal characteristics and home conditions of foster home or adoption applicants.
  • Determine clients' eligibility for financial assistance.
  • Serve on policymaking committees, assist in community development, and assist client groups by lobbying for solutions to problems.
  • Work in child and adolescent residential institutions.
  • Conduct social research.

Knowledge

Biology
Knowledge of plant and animal organisms, their tissues, cells, functions, interdependencies, and interactions with each other and the environment.
Chemistry
Knowledge of the chemical composition, structure, and properties of substances and of the chemical processes and transformations that they undergo. This includes uses of chemicals and their interactions, danger signs, production techniques, and disposal methods.
History and Archeology
Knowledge of historical events and their causes, indicators, and effects on civilizations and cultures.
Food Production
Knowledge of techniques and equipment for planting, growing, and harvesting food products (both plant and animal) for consumption, including storage/handling techniques.
Engineering and Technology
Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.
Design
Knowledge of design techniques, tools, and principles involved in production of precision technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.
Building and Construction
Knowledge of materials, methods, and the tools involved in the construction or repair of houses, buildings, or other structures such as highways and roads.
Physics
Knowledge and prediction of physical principles, laws, their interrelationships, and applications to understanding fluid, material, and atmospheric dynamics, and mechanical, electrical, atomic and sub- atomic structures and processes.
Fine Arts
Knowledge of the theory and techniques required to compose, produce, and perform works of music, dance, visual arts, drama, and sculpture.

Skills

Quality Control Analysis
Conducting tests and inspections of products, services, or processes to evaluate quality or performance.
Equipment Selection
Determining the kind of tools and equipment needed to do a job.
Installation
Installing equipment, machines, wiring, or programs to meet specifications.
Equipment Maintenance
Performing routine maintenance on equipment and determining when and what kind of maintenance is needed.
Troubleshooting
Determining causes of operating errors and deciding what to do about it.
Repairing
Repairing machines or systems using the needed tools.

Abilities

Peripheral Vision
The ability to see objects or movement of objects to one's side when the eyes are looking ahead.
Night Vision
The ability to see under low light conditions.
Spatial Orientation
The ability to know your location in relation to the environment or to know where other objects are in relation to you.
Glare Sensitivity
The ability to see objects in the presence of glare or bright lighting.
Dynamic Flexibility
The ability to quickly and repeatedly bend, stretch, twist, or reach out with your body, arms, and/or legs.
Speed of Limb Movement
The ability to quickly move the arms and legs.
Wrist-Finger Speed
The ability to make fast, simple, repeated movements of the fingers, hands, and wrists.
Rate Control
The ability to time your movements or the movement of a piece of equipment in anticipation of changes in the speed and/or direction of a moving object or scene.
Manual Dexterity
The ability to quickly move your hand, your hand together with your arm, or your two hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble objects.
Sound Localization
The ability to tell the direction from which a sound originated.

Interests

Social
Social occupations frequently involve working with, communicating with, and teaching people. These occupations often involve helping or providing service to others.
Enterprising
Enterprising occupations frequently involve starting up and carrying out projects. These occupations can involve leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes they require risk taking and often deal with business.
Artistic
Artistic occupations frequently involve working with forms, designs and patterns. They often require self-expression and the work can be done without following a clear set of rules.
Investigative
Investigative occupations frequently involve working with ideas, and require an extensive amount of thinking. These occupations can involve searching for facts and figuring out problems mentally.
Conventional
Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.
Realistic
Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.

Work Style

Concern for Others
Job requires being sensitive to others' needs and feelings and being understanding and helpful on the job.
Self Control
Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
Adaptability/Flexibility
Job requires being open to change (positive or negative) and to considerable variety in the workplace.
Cooperation
Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
Stress Tolerance
Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations.
Dependability
Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
Integrity
Job requires being honest and ethical.
Attention to Detail
Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.
Persistence
Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.
Social Orientation
Job requires preferring to work with others rather than alone, and being personally connected with others on the job.

Work Values

Relationships
Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to provide service to others and work with co-workers in a friendly non-competitive environment. Corresponding needs are Co-workers, Moral Values and Social Service.
Achievement
Occupations that satisfy this work value are results oriented and allow employees to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment. Corresponding needs are Ability Utilization and Achievement.
Independence
Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions. Corresponding needs are Creativity, Responsibility and Autonomy.
Working Conditions
Occupations that satisfy this work value offer job security and good working conditions. Corresponding needs are Activity, Compensation, Independence, Security, Variety and Working Conditions.
Support
Occupations that satisfy this work value offer supportive management that stands behind employees. Corresponding needs are Company Policies, Supervision: Human Relations and Supervision: Technical.
Recognition
Occupations that satisfy this work value offer advancement, potential for leadership, and are often considered prestigious. Corresponding needs are Advancement, Authority, Recognition and Social Status.

Lay Titles

Adolescent Counselor
Adoption Agent
Adoption Coordinator
Adoption Counselor
Adoption Specialist
Adoption Worker
Case Manager
Casework Supervisor
Caseworker
Child Abuse Worker
Child Advocate
Child and Family Services Worker
Child Care Counselor
Child Development Consultant
Child Protective Services Specialist
Child Welfare Caseworker
Child Welfare Consultant
Child Welfare Counselor
Child Welfare Worker
Children's Counselor
Community Organization Worker
Community Worker
Delinquency Prevention Social Worker
Early Intervention Specialist
Early Interventionist
Family Caseworker
Family Manager
Family Preservation Caseworker
Family Preservation Worker
Family Service Caseworker
Family Support Specialist
Family Support Worker
Field Representative
Field Service Representative
Foster Care Social Worker
Foster Care Worker
Group Worker
Human Service Specialist
Juvenile Counselor
Juvenile Officer
Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW)
Licensed Social Worker
Program Support Specialist
Protective Services Social Worker
Public Housing Community Relations and Services Advisor
School Social Worker
Youth Advocate

National Wages and Employment Info

Median Wages (2008):
$19.97 hourly, $41,530 annual.
Employment (2008):
273,920 employees