College Social Workers and Social Support Worker
Rachel Osmond – Social Worker
Desiree Micallef – Social Worker
Antonella Mejlaq – Social Support Worker
The role of the College Social Worker
The social worker within the school setting is to provide social work services to help students, of compulsory school age, who are not attending school regularly. The social worker utilises a variety of skills, techniques and activities to help the student develop their potential and self-esteem while focusing on the person and their environment. Together with the support of the education psycho-social services within the college, the social worker addresses the issue of absenteeism according to the students’ needs. The service-user is guided towards obtaining services and resources in the community which will help the service-user enhance their well-being and improve their quality of life.
The tasks of the social worker include:
- undertaking and writing up assessments;
- conducting office visits with service users and their families/legal guardians or when necessary home visits are also conducted at the service users’ home, to assess and review their situation;
- offering information and counselling support to service users and their families;
- liaising with, and making referrals to other agencies;
- participating in multidisciplinary teams and meetings/case discussions;
- maintaining records;
- preparing reports for legal action and participating in, Education Court Tribunal Sittings, and the Juvenile Court
- participating in training, supervision and team meetings.
The role of the College Social Support Worker
The Social Support Worker works in close collaboration with the College Social Workers, the college multi-disciplinary team, the DES Student Department and other professionals employed both within other Government Departments and non- Governmental Organisations.
One of the roles of the Social Support Worker and the Social Workers is dealing with absenteeism both primary and secondary schools. Currently priority is being given to students of primary school age since working on prevention is the best way in dealing with secondary absenteeism.
The tasks of the Social Support Workers include:
- Assisting the Social Worker in implementing care plans;
- Conducting home visits and other visits as may be required to communicate with target families identified by the supervisor of the social worker working within the respective college, so as to prevent, minimize or eliminate absenteeism from school
- Supporting families by helping them in practical ways to deal with educational needs of their children. This includes teaching home management, parenting and interpersonal skills to families for the benefit of the education of their children.
- Keeping records.
- Establishing and maintaining a link between school, home and education authorities.
- Maintaining regular working links with the Social Work Service (SWS) administration office in the Department for Student Services, DES, so as to ensure that children and adolescents experiencing physical, environmental, emotional or social problems are being supported, and thus assisting them to derive the full benefits of education.
- Participating in training, supervision and team meetings.