Representatives Gwen Moore and Barbara Lee Recognize School Social Work Week

Representatives Gwen Moore and Barbara Lee Recognize School Social Work Week

Today, Representatives Gwen Moore and Barbara Lee introduced a resolution that designates March 3rd - March 9th, 2024 as School Social Work Week.

“School social workers serve as vital intermediaries between a students’ school and home life, whose skills and training help them with a variety of needs, including familial conflicts, mental health challenges and academic struggles. Their work every day on behalf of our young people should be acknowledged, celebrated, and championed. As we face a shortage of school social workers, it is vital that Congress works to increase the pipeline of these professionals, to help meet the needs of our children. I am deeply committed to that effort, and I am thrilled to join my good friend and colleague Rep. Barbara Lee in honoring school social workers critical work and contributions to our communities,” said Rep. Moore.

"As a former psychiatric social worker and Chair of the Congressional Social Work Caucus, I am proud to recognize ‘School Social Workers Week’ alongside my colleague Congresswoman Gwen Moore. School social workers are critical mental health professionals who serve as bridges between vulnerable students and the resources they need to thrive as adults. Congress must use every possible avenue to uplift and empower school social workers and the students they serve," said Rep. Lee.

“The School Social Work Association of America (SSWAA) is honored to have the support and recognition from Rep. Moore and Rep. Lee on the value of School Social Workers supporting students, families, schools, and communities. School Social Workers provide vital services to students, enhancing their social, emotional, mental, behavioral, and academic success. The significant increase in child and adolescent mental health concerns illustrates the need for School Social Workers to continue to impact student well-being,” said Emilie Souhrada and Robert Lucio Legislative Committee Co-Chairs of SSWAA.

School social workers are mental health professionals and support many services, including leading crisis intervention, supporting behavioral management in the classroom, creating educational programs, and serving as a community-liaison to provides child-specific resources and support to families. There is a current shortage of school social workers and a looming shortage facing this workforce. The School Social Work Association of America and other professional organizations recommend one school social worker for every 250 students. However, ACLU research found that on average nationwide, there is only one school social worker for every 2,106 students. The U.S. Bureau of Labor and Statistics predicts there will be a shortage of 74,000 school social workers for the next decade. These statistics highlight the need for more of these professionals in our school to support students. In addition to leading this resolution, Representatives Gwen Moore and Barabra Lee cosponsor the School Social Workers Improving Student Success Act, which would help elementary and secondary schools retain and hire school social workers using a grant federal program, helping schools meet the recommended ratios.


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