Why We Need Social Workers in Schools

As budget cuts loom, school districts across the country are attempting to trim the fat from their budgets. This trimming often includes staff cuts, leading to questions of who really needs to work within the walls of school buildings. While we clearly need highly-qualified teachers to remain employed, do we need to continue to staff social workers? The answer to that question, is a resounding “Yes!”, and here’s why:

Why we need social workers in schools

Students

Our children benefit from having a social worker in a myriad of ways. Social workers can help children benefit from all of the educational opportunities available to them, help them cope with stress before major exams and assignments, help children to develop life skills, and lend a listening ear when necessary. Social workers also work tirelessly to stop bullying; a problem that has reached epidemic proportions in our schools.

Parents

You may think that a social worker in your child’s school is only in place to help students, but you would be wrong. Social workers can help parents with a number of things. With a social worker’s assistance, parents can become more involved in their children’s’ education and after-school activities, they can better understand how to meet the emotional needs of their child during different stages of development, and gain an understanding of the unique programs available to children with special needs. A social worker can also help parents utilize community and school district resources in the most effective ways.

Teachers

Social workers placed in schools offer assistance to teachers and staff on a daily basis. Social workers can help staff to understand the cultural and socio-economic influences that play parts in the way that students perform and behave. Professional social workers can also help buying levitra viagra cialis levitra online online safe administration and staff create and promote a safe learning environment, utilize resources to maximum benefit, and help understand the ways that the educational, emotional and social needs of all students can be met.

The Community

School social workers can work with other members of the community and local government to develop the resources that best meet the needs of the students within the district. These professionals can also meet with urban planners, helping to reduce environmental factors which are detrimental to the learning of students during the school day. When policies, practices and programs change, it’s the school’s social worker who can best explain these changes to the community at large.

Law Enforcement

One would never have thought that law enforcement officials had to be involved with the school day, but it’s becoming a very real necessity. School social workers can coordinate with these officials, ensuring that they are equipped with the information needed to keep the students safe as they move through their day. The social worker can also help to lessen the impact that having armed police installed in a school building can have, particularly on younger children.

When you consider all of the hats that social workers play in our schools, it’s easy to see why they are such an integral part of the system. From helping students to parents; staff to the community at large, school social workers offer a wide range of assistance and are an important component to any well-running district.

Brent Davis writes on secondary and post-graduate education. Interested in social work? You may want to pursue a degree in the field. Explore the programs offered at University of New England and at NYU for more information.

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