Critical Thinking Skills Child Welfare

Clinical supervision focuses on the work that caseworkers do with children and families. Good clinical supervision is critical to building worker competencies, including reinforcing positive social work ethics and values, encouraging self-reflection and critical thinking skills, building upon training to enhance performance, and supporting the worker through casework decision-making and crises. The following resources provide examples of efforts to better understand and enhance the clinical role of supervisors.

A Clinical Consultation Model for Child Welfare Supervisors
Strand & Badger
Child Welfare, 86(1), 2007
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Discusses a program conducted by faculty from six schools of social work with about 150 child welfare supervisors over a 2-year period. The paper describes the consultation model, development of curriculum, project implementation, and results of the initial assessment.

Clinical Supervision in Child Welfare: Themes From Findings of a Multisite Study
Professional Development: The International Journal of Continuing Social Work Education, 9(2), 2006
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Summarizes the themes from findings of a multisite study conducted in four States' child welfare agencies to test the impact of the implementation of clinical casework supervision.

Essentials of Clinical Supervision
Campbell (2006)
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Provides step-by-step guidelines for effective supervision planning, goal setting, and evaluation, along with tips for giving constructive feedback and applying coaching strategies to motivate supervisees.

Promoting Structured Clinical Casework Supervision in Public Child Welfare: Curriculum Outlines and Selected Materials
Southern Regional Quality Improvement Center for Child Protection (2006)
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Provides outlines of the educational processes that projects in four States (Arkansas, Mississippi, Missouri, and Tennessee) implemented to develop knowledge and skills in supervisors needed to promote a structured clinical casework supervision approach. Training materials, learning modules, materials for online tutorials, and supervisory tools developed by the projects are included.

The Role of Supervisors in Developing Clinical Decision-Making Skills in Child Protective Services
Jones, Washington, & Steppe
Journal of Evidence-Based Social Work, 4(3/4), 2007
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Examines the applicability of clinical decision-making as a tool for effective skills building in child protective services supervision.

Staff Recruitment, Retention, and Training Strategies for Community Human Services Organizations
Research and Training Center on Community Living, Institute on Community Integration, University of Minnesota (2005)
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Serves as a guide for supervisors and managers in community-based social service agencies on strategies for achieving a quality workforce.

Structured Clinical Casework Supervision Projects: Final Report
Southern Regional Quality Improvement Center (SR QIC) for Child Protection (2007)
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Describes and presents the outcomes of four projects designed to improve clinical supervision in child welfare agencies. The projects were required to establish partnerships among the public child welfare agency, university, and community; those partnerships planned, implemented, and evaluated techniques for enhancing clinical casework supervision in the public child welfare agencies.

Supervising the Safety Intervention Process: Part I
Action for Child Protection (2004)
Explores the role of child welfare supervisors in the safety intervention process at intake and the initial contact with the family. It also explains supervisory responsibility for worker preparation for the initial contact with the family, as well as preparation for intervention.

Supervising the Safety Intervention Process: Part II
Action for Child Protection (2004)
Explores the role of child welfare supervisors in the safety intervention process during and at the completion of the initial safety assessment.

So much is happening as your child begins her third year! She may be participating in a preschool or child care program and building a relationship with her teacher or caregiver. She is probably making new friends. She is also showing you how capable and independent she is by doing lots of things for herself, like learning to put a jacket on or help with tasks like setting the table.

Reading together is one important way you can help your toddler make the transition from baby to big kid. Language development also soars at this age, as children are using words to express their thoughts and feelings. In the third year, you will continue to see a big jump in your child’s thinking skills. She will start to appreciate humor and jokes. She will show her creativity and her problem-solving skills as she plays and interacts with you. And, while tantrums may not disappear entirely, your toddler is also developing more self-control and coping skills as she grows.

Remember: If your child is interested and involved in an activity—and having fun—she is learning! So treasure these days of playing, exploring, and cuddling with your little one—it is exactly what she needs to grow and learn.

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