National School Social Work Week

National School Social Work Week
Posted on 03/03/2023
National School Social Work Week

The week of March 5th through 11th is recognized as National School Social Work week. During this week, the School District celebrate the critical role school Social Workers play in helping every student reach their highest personal potential. School Social Workers support student success through evidence-based academic, emotional, and behavioral interventions. They serve as vital members of their school’s Threat Assessment Team and Mental Health Team, helping to ensure the safety, health, and well-being of students and school communities. Believing deeply that “students must be present to learn”, School Social Workers partner with students and parents to overcome barriers to attendance – ensuring families have the support and resources they need to get to school.

Last school year, School Social Workers provided over 127,000 direct supports to students and their families. By linking home, school, and community – they serve as a trusted resource to their students and families in need. In addition, many School Social Workers maintain “Clothing Closets”, food pantries, and resource rooms to reduce the economic barriers that often impede a student’s success at school.

The theme for this year’s National School Social Work Week is “We Rise” – a testament to social workers unwavering commitment to overcome challenges to support students. Never was this clearer than after Hurricane Ian. Just 5 days after the hurricane, School Social Workers began the work of connecting with their families, assessing for needs, and delivering food, water, and other critical resources to those most impacted by the storm. They volunteered at the hurricane shelters, counseling families who had lost so much and providing hope and encouragement for the recovery to come.

As schools re-opened, School Social Workers were on the frontlines – locating students who were displaced in their housing and helping them to reengage with their school. Through strong community partnerships, the Social Work Services department facilitated the distribution of 1,000 mattresses and bedding, thousands of pairs of shoes, hundreds of backpacks, school supplies and clothing items, and countless other resources to families and staff in need.

Through the Homeless Education Program, School Social Workers provide enhanced support and services to the over 3,600 homeless and displaced students in the District. This includes after-school tutoring, SAT and ACT test prep, housing resource assistance, medical and dental vouchers, transportation assistance, cap and gown purchases for seniors, summer STEM camp, and summer wraparound services. In addition, the department’s Foster Education Program ensures school stability for the 730 youth in foster care across our district.

During National School Social Work Week, schools, staff, and the community are invited to celebrate the immeasurable impact School Social Workers have on the School District of Lee County. Their passion, heart, and commitment to student success shines through all that they do.

Thank you School Social Workers!