April 8, 2013
SSWAA Promotes A Framework for Safe and Successful Schools
SSWAA is working with other national education organizations in multiple efforts to promote increased school mental health services. We have unveiled a plan that focuses on supportive, rather than punitive efforts to promote school safety and cautions against arming school personnel. Please share our Framework for Safe and Successful Schools with your colleagues and school leaders. We hope this will help all of us advocate for better access to mental health services at schools, balancing physical and psychological safety to avoid overly restrictive measures that can undermine the learning environment, and for the funding of continuous and sustainable crisis and emergency preparedness.
SSWAA has also provided input on additional guidelines and sets of recommendations with national civil rights and juvenile justice organizations that urge a focus on mental health care and positive school climate as a long-term solution to preventing school violence. See the Advancement Project’s A Real Fix: The Gun Free Way to Safe Schools which specifically mentions school social workers, as well as the Recommendations of the National Juvenile Justice and Delinquency Prevention Coalition (NJJDPC)
These recommendations urge policymakers to advance local, state and federal legislation that effectively addresses the needs of students and that mitigates disciplinary policies and practices, such as over-reliance on zero tolerance and justice responses, that can push students out of school and into the justice system, thereby damaging rather than improving their academic, social and life outcomes.
Thanks to all of you who took interest at the conference in SSWAA’s national advocacy efforts. We need all the voices of school social workers to be loud and clear about the importance of our profession and the services we provide students and their families.
SSWAA Legislative Advocacy Team
Your membership dollars at work!