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SSWAA Activity Update
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SSWAA would like to sincerely thank our members for all of your support and encourage others to join us in promoting our profession!  These are only a few of the things that have been accomplished by hard working individuals on your behalf.


Standards & Practice Committee:

The SSWAA Standards and Practice Committee recently finalized four resolution statements in collaboration with the Delegate Assembly including: 
(1) School Social Work and Common Core: Aligning Practice with National Standards (2015)
(2) School Safety:  The School Social Work Role in Violence Prevention (2014)
(3) Advocating for the Use of the Title:  "School Social Worker" (2014) and
(4) Multi-Tiered Systems of Support (2014).
The Committee and DA will continue their work on resolution statements regarding Clinical Mental Health services and other topics.  See additional Resolution Statements that can be used or referenced in your own advocacy efforts


*  Reduced Student Membership to $35 and continue to explore ways to support and attract student involvement
*  Added an International Member category at $60 for international members.
*  Exploring ways to retain and increase members at the state, regional, and national levels.
*  Distributed and evaluated a Membership Retention Survey to examine membership trends. 

National Research Agenda includes:

*  Working with the Council on Social Work Education to get an agreement for national school social work accreditation.
*  SSWAA continues to explore Evidence Based Practices that can be implemented by School Social Workers, as well as
*  Links between School Social Work Services and Academic outcomes
* A working group founded at the Society for Social Work and Research has established a Special Interest Group (SIG) focusing on School Social Work Research. SIG Mission Statement: to advance child and adolescent well-being and academic success through the development and dissemination of school social work research, scholarship, and practice theories. SSWAA and the SSW-SIG have agreed to share website links in order to provide researchers access to extensive resources

Support to States:

The SSWAA Board has worked extremely hard for the past 6 years to listen to and re-establish close affiliations with our state associations.  SSWAA has invited state associations to become "Affiliate States" of SSWAA and be represented as part of our Delegate Assembly which has been set up to provide input and guidance to SSWAA regarding policy & practice decisions for the organization. 

  • Over the past 5 years, 29 states have already become Affiliate States 
  • The Delegate Assembly has met 7 times to assist the SSWAA Board in policy development as well as review, dialogue and problem solve state and membership issues.  Members of SSWAA Affiliate States receive a SSWAA membership discount.
  • SSWAA recently assisted Washington DC in forming their own state association.
  • SSWAA is now in communication with Alabama, Hawaii, Louisiana, Nevada, and Wyoming about assisting in those states as well.
  • SSWAA continues to work closely with developing state associations.  Contact us if you have any questions or your state needs assistance.

Ad Hoc Committees:

International School Social Work Credential
     o Goal to provide guidelines for other countries to establish Standards

National School Social Work Standards for Social Emotional Learning
     o After two years of development along with several opportunities for input from others around the country, SSWAA has just finalized the National School Social Work Standards for Social Emotional Learning.  

SSWAA Projects:

July 8, 2015 H.R. 2988 School Social Work Bill  was re-introduced by Rep. Gwen Moore

March 4, 2015 Representative Gwen Moore (D-WI) introduced Congressional Resolution H. RES. 146, “Expressing support for designation of the week of March 1, 2015, through March 7, 2015, as School Social Work Week.” 

January, 2015 SSWAA is a founding member of the Coalition to Support Grieving Students. 

SSWAA is an active partner in the Safe and Supportive Schools Project  to help create safe and supportive school environments as an innovative approach to the prevention of HIV and other sexually transmitted infections for adolescents. Funded by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), this project promotes safe and supportive environments for all students and staff, through the work of school social workers, counselors and psychologists. The project is also focused on reducing health disparities in three groups of youth at disproportionate risk including: LGBT youth, with an emphasis on young men who have sex with men, homeless youth and youth in alternative schools.

SSWAA has completed  a School Social Work National Practice Model as well as the SSWAA National Evaluation Framework for School Social Work Practice (2013) (word version) and (pdf version) modeled after the Danielson Framework.

Over the past 2 years, SSWAA has contributed several articles in the "Student Services" section of Principal Leadership highlighting the role of School Social Workers!

April, 2014 SSWAA successfully helped advocate for the inclusion of School Social Workers as part of the U.S. Department of Education's OCR Data Collection

School Social Worker services are include in the New "Whole-Child" Policy Guide for School Board Members" 

In February, 2014 SSWAA contributed to the document: “Evaluating Specialized Instructional Support Personnel”       Read more

SSWAA supported and assisted in the distribution of the 2nd National School Social Work Survey.  The goal of the survey was to capture the greatest number of practicing school social workers ever surveyed. Its results will inform national and state level efforts to expand the presence of social work in school settings.   Read more and see some of your state's data

In April, 2013 SSWAA joined the National Association of Secondary School Principals, National Association of Elementary School Principals, National Association of School Psychologists, American School Counselor's Association, National Association of School Resource Officers to develop  A Framework for Safe and Successful Schools    This document outlines the various roles that we each play in schools. 

The Board has created a new Resolution Statement  "Highly Qualified School Social Worker Definition"  


Four  Awards have been established to recognize outstanding leaders in our field which are presented at our National School Social Work Conferencesm

SSWAA has also established a "Children's Champion Award"  to acknowledge a Congressperson for Legislative Advocacy supporting School Social Work.and services to students. Senator Al Franken (D-MN)  was awarded the 2015 Children's Champion Award at SSWAA's Summer Leadership and Legislative Institute in Washington, DC.

Membership Benefits:

$250,000 Professional Liability Insurance has been added as a membership benefit with an option for members to upgrade to $1,000,000 coverage for only $25 annually. 

Our National School Social Work Conferencesm  features workshops dedicated to the issues and professional development needs of School Social Workers provided by experts in the field from all over the country, many of whom are nationally and internationally recognized.   Members receive discounted rates.

Bi-Weekly  EBells providing electronic news. 

Participates in numerous national collaborations to influence national policy and legislation.

SSWAA has migrated and established an even newer website to establish an on-line community for school social workers as well as provide easier access to information and resources for School Social Workers, Administrators, University Faculty,  School Social Work Students, Researchers, Parents, etc. including member only access.   SSWAA would like to serve as a Clearinghouse for resources and links including Resources by Topic (Public Access)  and much more for  members We encourage you to look around and invite your contributions for consideration so that others can benefit. 

SSWAA  is again planning to provide Webinars on topics of importance to School Social Workers. Check out some of our past offerings.  

Member Discounts on Publications from Oxford Press as well as  PAR, Inc. products. (Assessments including the Achenbach)

These are just a few.  For a more complete list of Member Benefits, click here.


SSWAA currently  has 4 staff persons who work tirelessly to assist the Board in providing services to our members and  state associations.  Here are only some of the highlights of what your hard working staff do to support you and our profession.

Rebecca Kunkel Oliver, our Executive Director, is a former School Social Worker and is committed to our profession and the advancement of SSWAA.  Rebecca is focused on meaningful priorities for the organization including the crucial task of promoting membership in our National Organization, increasing and improving effective communication between the national organization and state organization leadership, and leading in efforts to increase SSWAA's impact on state and national platformsSee her message to members: "A Lot Has Happened in my First Six Months"

Our Legislative Team, headed by Myrna Mandlawitz and Libby Nealis, have never skipped a beat in maintaining our national presence in Washington, D.C.  on issues impacting education and the role played by Specialized Instructional Support Professionals as well as the children, youth and families we serve.  In addition to their direct work "on the Hill", they provide advocacy, policy development and representation for SSWAA and School Social Workers with numerous Coalitions and Partnerships helping to ensure that our voice is at the table.

Dot Kontak serves as Communications Director, who after previously planning 4 successful conferences through 2013 continues to provide direct conference assistance; has developed and maintains the extensive and resource filled SSWAA website; responds to email requests and concerns; provides administrative technical support and assistance; continues to provide new resources and information to assist School Social Workers, state associations, and others in their daily practice; as well as  creates the electronic news and updates for members.

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