The Role of the Social Worker
Social workers have worked in WA Catholic schools since 1984 and currently there are around 30 social workers working in 50 mainly metropolitan Catholic schools. The effectiveness of this school-based program allows social workers to be readily available to school staff for consultation and to families and students as problems arise.
Catholic school social workers have a bachelor’s degree in social work, this degree includes the study of individual and family counselling, group work and child protection. To be employed in a Catholic school, social workers must have experience working with children and families, be eligible to belong to the Australian association of social workers (AASW) and adhere to their code of standard and ethics.
What does the school social worker do?
The School Social Worker helps students:
- Engage fully with their school experience by addressing social and emotional issues.
- Understand themselves and others.
- Improve self-concepts and cope with stress.
- Develop decision-making and problem-solving skills.
- By offering counselling to students and families, for issues ranging from peer problems to the effect of separation and loss on family members.
- Providing group work for students with an identifiable need.
The School Social Worker helps parents:
- Participate more effectively in their children’s education.
- Understand and meet their children’s social and emotional needs.
- Utilise school and community resources.
- Access referrals from outside agencies, where appropriate.
What is counseling?
Counselling provides the opportunity for people to clarify problems and develop and use strengths to find ways of managing and resolving issues or new ways of coping.
Counseling addresses such issues as:
- Behavioural problems at school or at home
- Self- regulation
- Building resiliency and self-esteem
- Child protection issues
- Conflict resolution
- Dealing with anxieties and fears
- Family separation and change issues
- Grief and loss
- Learning difficulties
- Anger management
- Welfare/financial assistance
- Friendship issues/social skills
- Parenting concerns
Infant Jesus School Social Worker
Julie Merrells can be contacted at Infant Jesus School every Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.
This is a free service and is part of the Infant Jesus School’s ongoing commitment to the pastoral care needs of the students and school community. Discussions and any records kept by the social worker are considered as private and treated confidentially.
School Social Work Services
School social workers and school counsellors help to identify, to assess, and to resolve the social and emotional difficulties of children, which interfere with their attendance, adjustment and achievement in school.
Their main aim is to support children to gain the most from their educational opportunities. They work together with pupils, parents, school personnel, community agency staffs and others to help make school a successful and useful experience for all children.
Our school social worker also works with parents and staff to support them to better understand themselves and their children and to learn more about the programs and services of the school and community. Infant Jesus School provides the services of a social worker to support our community.
© Infant Jesus School 2017
17 Smith St, Morley WA 6062
Tel: (08) 9276 1769 | Fax: (08) 9276 2998
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