What does a School Social Worker do?
School Social Workers work at elementary, middle and high schools to administer professional mental health support to the student body. The School Social Worker’s role is to intervene when students are struggling and help them find healthy ways to succeed in school. They educate students on social and emotional concepts. They collaborate with Teachers to identify students that are struggling emotionally, socially or academically and identify the root cause of their issues. School Social Workers direct students and their families to sources of community support like free medical care or housing assistance to help students overcome obstacles.
School Social Worker skills and qualifications
School Social Workers work in demanding environments and should possess the following skills and qualifications to ensure the success of both students and the School Social Worker:
- Ability to develop creative solutions to challenging situations
- Proactive and positive attitude
- Able to set boundaries
- Perception and active listening
- Empathetic yet objective
School Social Worker salary expectations
While there is no specific salary data for School Social Workers, a typical Social Worker makes an average of $59,489 per year, though salaries can vary according to geographical location and the experience level and qualifications of the applicant.
School Social Worker education and training requirements
While those who would like to earn a living as School Social Workers can do so with a bachelor’s degree in social work or a related field of study and some experience in related jobs, most states require a minimum of a master’s degree in social work from an accredited school. Specific licensing or certification requirements for School Social Workers may vary from state to state. Some Social Workers may even have a doctorate level degree in social work to make them more competitive.
School Social Worker experience requirements
The master’s program for a School Social Worker usually includes an internship and fieldwork. Individuals becoming a School Social Worker will also need to attain a license. Licenses can range from the Licensed Master of Social Work (LMSW) to a Licensed Clinical Social Worker (LCSW), which allows an individual to work independently and in more complicated situations. Typically, clinical licenses require at least two to three years of supervised clinical social work.
Job description samples for similar positions
If a School Social Worker position isn’t exactly what you’re looking for, consider this job description for a similar position: