Training Matters

 

Vol. 10, No. 1 • November 2008

Courses Required for Child Welfare Staff

North Carolina has training requirements in place for all child welfare workers and supervisors. The best way to find out about training requirements for your position is to go to ncswLearn.org, log in, and go to the Individualized Training Assessment, or ITA. The following summary, which is based on North Carolina law [G.S. 131D-10.6A(b)], may also be helpful.

Child Welfare Workers
In their first year of employment all child welfare workers are required by law to attend the following:

1. Child Welfare in North Carolina. This 72-hour course must be completed before workers assume direct contact responsibility with clients. Participants attend 11 days in the classroom and complete the equivalent of one classroom day online. You must complete this course before you can attend other courses.

2. Child Development in Families at Risk. Offered completely online. 12 credit hours.

3. Cultural Perspectives. Three classroom days. 18 credit hours.

4. Legal Aspects of Child Welfare in North Carolina. Two classroom days. 12 credit hours.

5. Medical Aspects of Child Abuse and Neglect for Non-Medical Professionals. Two classroom days. 12 credit hours.

6. Step by Step: An Introduction to Child and Family Teams. Two classroom days. 12 credit hours.

In addition, in the first year of employment child welfare workers must attend the courses from Tier 2 of the 200 series that address their job function areas. For example, intake workers must attend Intake in Child Welfare Services. Staff responsible for more than one function (e.g., licensing and placement) must take multiple courses from Tier 2. Staff who must attend more than one job-specific training event should work with their supervisor to prioritize training attendance.

After the first year of employment, child welfare workers must complete 24 hours of continuing education each year. Select courses from the 300 series to fulfill this requirement. For selection tips, see the next article.

Supervisors
By law, the training requirements described above also apply to county DSS child welfare supervisors. In addition, within a year of assuming child welfare services managerial functions, supervisors must attend Introduction to Supervision for Child Welfare Services. This nine-day course helps new supervisors understand their role, their strengths as a supervisor, and ways to manage change. It emphasizes assessing worker skills, using individual development plans for workers, and providing feedback prior to the formal evaluation process. Participants leave with concrete tools to use as they interact with staff and supervisors. (54 credit hours)

After the first year of employment, child welfare supervisors must complete 24 hours of continuing education each year. Courses from the 300 series specifically for supervisors include:

  • Supervisors Strengthening Staff Performance: Managing Transfer of Learning in the Work Place. Four classroom days, plus the equivalent of one classroom day online. 30 credit hours.
  • What’s Good for Families Is Good for Workers. Four days, 24 hours.
  • Working with Others, Working with Outcomes. Three classroom days, 18 credit hours.

CFT Meeting Facilitators
Because the use of a neutral facilitator significantly enhances the effectiveness of Child and Family Team meetings, anyone who facilitates CFT meetings in high and intensive risk cases is required to attend Anchors Away! How to Navigate Child and Family Teams: The Role of the Facilitator within the first 12 months of facilitating.

To Learn More
For additional information on training laws, policies, and resources, visit <http://www.ncdhhs.gov/dss/training/childwelfare.htm>.

 

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2008 Jordan Institute for Families