SSWAA Summary of “School Social Workers Improving Student Success Act”! H.R. 2988 Re-introduced July 8, 2015 (previously H.R. 563)
In her press release, Congresswoman Moore states that, “As we continue to explore ways to improve our education system, let us recognize the contributions of school social workers and the vital role they play in helping our children reach their fullest potential.” She has previously noted: “Kids face big difficulties at home even before they show up to school. These affect their learning and can make them act out, withdraw, or even skip school all together. School social workers have a proven track record of helping students overcome obstacles in their lives and succeed in school, which we know is necessary for future success.”
Many thanks to the SSWAA members from Wisconsin who developed a relationship with Moore’s office and visited her staff during the SSWAA Leadership meeting last summer. These are the kind of results we can achieve from making contact with our State and federal legislators!
Overall Purpose: H.R. 2988 to establish a grant program to fund additional school social workers and retain currently employed school social workers in high-need school districts.
1. Grant funds may be used by local school districts for the following purposes:
- To retain school social workers employed in the district or to hire additional school social workers.
- To reimburse school social workers for expenses incurred in providing services listed in #2 below.
2. School social workers providing services to students under these grants shall:
- Identify the highest-need students in each school served by the social worker and target services to those students; and
- Provide to those students social work services, including:
- counseling and crisis intervention;
- case management to coordinate delivery of and access to appropriate school social work services;
- addressing social, emotional, and mental health needs to ensure better school outcomes;
- providing assistance to teachers in designing behavioral interventions;
- working with students, families, schools, and communities to promote attendance and address causes of poor attendance, such as homelessness, lack of transportation, illness, or phobia;
- home visits to meet the family of students in need of social work services in the home environment; and,
- connecting students and families to community services.
3. Grants are awarded for a period not to exceed four years.
4. Grant recipients will report on staffing expansion of school social workers funded by the grant and the specific work performed to target high-need students.
For further information, please contact Libby Nealis, Director of Policy & Advocacy, School Social Work Association of America firstname.lastname@example.org
or Myrna Mandlawitz, Government Relations Director, School Social Work Association of America, email@example.com
School Social Workers Improving Student Success Act
Previous Bill Numbers: H.R. 1138 and H.R. 568
Sponsor: U.S. Representative Gwen Moore (D-WI)