Monday, March 8, 2021
School social workers are critical members of the school team in every MPS school. This week, during School Social Workers Week, March 7–13, MPS salutes our social workers who are a key part of many students’ lives.
Students and families often have numerous needs that may include mental health, social emotional learning, financial challenges, and unmet physical and emotional needs. School social workers help identify concerns and make connections to resources for the safety, health, comfort, and well-being of students and families. Meeting these needs is shown to increase children’s academic achievement and help them thrive.
School social workers also connect students with their teachers and peers and advocate for equal access to education opportunities and community resources for all students. When families struggle to stay connected to their schools, school social workers listen to the barriers they face and help find solutions so families can learn to resolve concerns and build stability.
During the pandemic and virtual learning, school social workers have been vital in providing students and families with a variety of supports to increase feelings of connectedness, even as we are all required to observe social distancing. The connections forged by school social workers can take many forms.
- Advocate for all students to ensure equity of resources.
- Identify homeless families and provide resources to access the necessary food, clothing, and shelter they deserve.
- Facilitate student and group support to reduce barriers that interfere with academic achievement.
- Connect with parents and students to improve or enhance daily attendance.
- Ensure families have the technology and support for students to participate in virtual learning
- Conduct home visits to provide families with resources and strengthen school connections
All this week, remember to thank a school social worker who supports staff, students and families in our district. Thank you, school social workers!!