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  • 11/07/2022 3:49 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Amazing WI Social Workers!

    The Intersectional Educator Caucus (IEC) is reaching out to all educators in Wisconsin to join our new LGBTQIA+ affinity space. IEC’s Queer affinity group is a grassroots effort to create connection, offer support and organize LGBTQIA+ adults who work in and alongside schools. 

    We have had some trying years in education, to say the least.  In the face of unprecedented shortages, attacks on Queer/Trans youth, and exclusionary policy initiatives at all levels, we believe coming together in supportive community is the only course of action.  With your help, we are striving to foster space that meets the immediate needs of our community and builds towards inclusive and affirming schools of the future.  


    If you are interested in joining, please fill out IEC’s member survey (IEC also offers affinity space for BIPOC educators).  We also hope you will join us for our next meeting on Wednesday November 23 at 7pm (please pre-register here).  Finally, join our private facebook group and look out for a Discord invite after filling out the survey.

    Thank you so much and please reach out with questions to IntersectionalEducatorCaucus@gmail.com


  • 11/01/2022 12:23 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Guidance on Supporting Transgender and Nonbinary Youth and Letter to Wisconsin Association of School Boards

    As you are likely aware, school districts around the country are grappling with new proposed policies that would limit what educators can say related to gender and sexuality; or even require educators to disclose information about students who identify as LGBTQIA+ to their families. Wisconsin is not immune to these difficult proposals, including a recently passed policy in Rice Lake. 

    In response to these troubling laws that will not only harm the well-being of our students, but also require school social workers to violate our Code of Ethics; WSSWA’s Legislative Committee has collaborated with the Wisconsin School Psychologists Association and the Wisconsin School Counselors Association to write a letter to the Wisconsin Association of School Boards (WASB.) You can read the letter here. This letter has been shared with the WASB and is free to be re-shared with others. If needed, this letter can be used as a resource or guide when writing to your own school boards, administrators, or state representatives. 

    WSSWA is also proud to share a newly created resource with our members: the WSSWA Guidelines for Supporting Transgender and Nonbinary Students. This rich resource provides tons of helpful information ranging from legal protections, background information on transitioning, tips for advocacy, and links to other resources. This resource will also be listed under “Professional Resources”  on the WSSWA member’s page.


  • 09/01/2022 12:41 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    You can help shape the direction of school social work in Wisconsin - Apply to be a board member!

    WSSWA is seeking members who want to grow their leadership skills through participation on the board. Board members meet 5 times per year (Feb/May virtual and Oct/Nov/July in person) and do not need experience in any particular area to be qualified to serve. You may want to consider board membership as a way to learn and practice leadership skills, which will benefit your professional growth and career. More info here.  Application here.  Deadline to apply is October 1st, 2022. Must be able to commit to attending November 12th board meeting, 9-12:00 in Green Lake following the fall conference.


  • 08/24/2022 11:14 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Below are some resources shared by Julie Incitti, our school social work liaison at DPI:

    Hello champion leaders!

    Many of you are walking into your buildings for the first time in a while. You greet your colleagues with a smile, maneuver to your office, and sit there, pausing, taking it all in. What will this year bring? Which students will you connect with? Who will you help most? Who will teach you more than you teach them? Who will you rely on for support? How will you know you’ve made a difference? When this year ends, what do you hope to have done? Only you have the answers to these questions. Give yourself time to pause, connect, and reflect. We can’t always control the world around us, but we can control how we meet the world. Let your values be your guide.

    • Back-to-School Toolkit for Getting Kids Covered by Health Insurance – DHHS
      • Key information and outreach products to help you spread the word to families on how to ensure their kids are covered by health insurance, as put out by the federal government.
    • Digital Shareables on Child and Adolescent Mental Health - NIH
      • Use these resources to raise awareness about the importance of child and adolescent mental health. Help raise awareness about the importance of children’s mental health and early diagnosis and treatment by sharing information and materials based on the latest research.
    • Talking with your children about stress – APA
      • APA offers these tips on talking with your children about stress…
    • Article - 4 Proactive Steps to Avoid Misbehavior From the First Day of Class On - Edutopia
      • Carefully working on relationship building right from the start of the school year can help teachers avoid discipline issues.
    • Deaf Crisis Line - DeafLEAD
      • DeafLEAD provides Crisis Intervention, Advocacy, Case Management and Mental Health Services for Deaf, hard of hearing, late-deafened and DeafBlind victims of crimes and their families. Staff and trained crisis advocates who are fluent in American Sign Language provide culturally and linguistically appropriate support to individuals who are experiencing emotional or physical distress as a result of victimization.
    • NEW Anti-Human Trafficking Trainings Added!
      • Links to session descriptions and registration available on the WISH Center’s Anti-Human Trafficking Flyer (3 pages!), including AHT Tool to Use with Youth and Harm Reduction Training.

     

    In case you missed it (Resources I have emailed about in the past) –


    (Resources are not endorsed by DPI and simply provided for your consideration.)

     

    Thank you for all you do!

    Julie Incitti, MSW, APSW

    She/Her/Hers

    School Social Work Consultant DPI


  • 05/05/2022 10:15 AM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    The following is from Julie Incitti, SSW Consultant, DPI:

    National Children’s Mental Health Awareness Week shines a national spotlight on the importance of caring for every child’s mental health and reinforces that positive mental health is essential to a child’s healthy development. This is an opportunity to change the perceptions around mental health.

    Some resources for you (If this list feels overwhelming, just pick ONE to open and consider – maybe the first  ?):

    (Resources are not endorsed by DPI and are for your consideration only.)

    • DIY Tools for Mental Health (Don’t forget that YOU (and OTHER ADULTS) need to start with yourself!) – Mental Health America
      • Find apps, worksheets, and other tools to improve your mental health on your own.
    • Mental Health Topics – Child Mind
      • Boost your mental health literacy with Child Mind Institute’s Topics and Parenting Guides, covering such areas as ADHD, Anxiety, Behavior Problems, Depression, Diagnosis Eating Disorders, Suicide, Healthy Development, and so on.
    • Healthy Minds Thriving Kids – Child Mind
      • A series of free, evidence-based video and print resources that caregivers and educators can use to teach their kids critical mental health and coping skills. The project was born of an innovative partnership between the state of California and the Child Mind Institute.
    • “Meet Little Monster” Coloring & Activity Book -NAMI
      • To help foster dialogue between children and the safe adults in their lives, as well as provide children a tool for helping express and explore their feelings in a fun, creative and empowering way, NAMI offers “Meet Little Monster,” a mental health coloring and activity book, available for download at no-cost in both English and Spanish.
    • How Teachers Can Empower Students Who Are Experiencing Trauma – Edutopia
      • This quick read explains, “While we cannot solve problems in a student’s life, we can give them back their power and ensure that they consistently feel seen and heard within the walls of our classroom in order to give them space to process and communicate their emotions in safer, more productive ways… One of the easiest and most powerful tools that you have to make a student feel seen and heard is your language.”
    • Activities Guide: Enhancing and Practicing Executive Function Skills with Children from Infancy to Adolescence – Harvard Center on the Developing Child
      • Executive function and self-regulation (EF/SR) skills provide critical supports for learning and development, and while we aren’t born with these skills, we are born with the potential to develop them through interactions and practice. This 16-page guide, describes a variety of activities and games that represent age-appropriate ways for adults to support and strengthen various components of EF/SR in children.
    • LGBTQ+ Resources for School Mental Health Providers and School Personnel -  Center of Excellence on LGBTQ+ Behavioral Health Equity
      • Use the resources to stay up to date with the most accurate and affirming language and approaches to supporting LGBTQ+ clients.
    • Implicit Bias Module Series – Kirwan Institute for the Study of Race and Ethnicity
      • A free video series from leading experts on implicit bias. Dig in to better understand how implicit bias plays into academic achievement, school discipline, and other topics.
    • A Trauma-Informed Resource for Strengthening Family-School Partnerships – NCTSN
      • Helps schools assess what level of partnering currently exists within their school community, areas that require enhancement, and strategies for implementing these enhancements. This tool is for administrators and staff to drive further conversation about family-school partnerships. It builds on the NCTSN Trauma-Informed Schools Framework and is aligned with SAMHSA’s 6 Principles of Trauma-Informed Care.


  • 04/20/2022 2:53 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Nominate the 2022 School Social Worker of the Year!

    Nominate a colleague whom you feel is deserving of the 2022 SCHOOL SOCIAL WORKER OF THE YEAR AWARD!  This is a wonderful  chance to recognize, honor, and celebrate a school social worker who is making a difference in our communities. 

    To nominate a school social worker, please use the nomination form found here.  In your submission, you will need to share how the nominee is exceptional in 2 of the 4 areas on the Wisconsin School Social Worker Evaluation Framework.  Read about past recipients in the awards section on our website.  Deadline for submissions: June 1st, 2022


  • 04/20/2022 2:53 PM | Anonymous member (Administrator)

    Request for Proposals for WSSWA’s Annual Conference November 10-12th now open

    It’s time to start planning for our annual WSSWA conference taking place November 10-11th, 2022. The theme of the November 2022 conference is Supporting Mental Health in Schools Through a Continuum of Supports. We are excited to share that our conference will return to the newly remodeled Heidel House in Green Lake.

    Our members are invaluable sources of information and education for our profession. If you are interested in sharing your expertise and leading a workshop at our conference, please submit your proposal here. Proposals are due by August 1st, 2022.


  • 02/26/2022 10:45 AM | Anonymous

    Article from the UW Madison School of Social Work:

    School workers play a vital role in the lives of American school children. A new book, The Art of Becoming Indispensable: What School Social Workers Need to Know in Their First Three Years of Practice, by Oxford University Press is designed to help the new school social worker adapt to and thrive within the school context.

    Two field faculty associates: Katie Larsen-Klodd, MSSW and Jenny Braunginn, MSSW, CISW co-authored a chapter, entitled, “Self-Care and Self-Advocacy: Keeping Cool While Increasing Engagement.” The chapter, “explores the art and necessity of self-care for the school social workers and provides basic information about workplace stress, tools for quality-of-life assessment, and strategies to build immediate and long-term self-care routines,” according to the publisher.

    The book, divided into four sections: The Host Environment; The Macro School Social Worker; Integration and Intervention; and School Social Worker Sustainability, offers insights for new social workers to become proficient professionals in school settings.

    The book was recently selected by the School Social Work Association of America (SSWAA) for a 2022 Book Award and will be recognized at their national conference in April. Jenny Braunginn will also present the chapter at the conference. Her travel was funded thanks to the Rosemarie Carbino Fund at the school.

    Jenny Braunginn

    Katie Larsen-Klodd


  • 02/20/2022 12:52 PM | Anonymous

    The Wisconsin Tourette Association will be hosting The Tourette Connect Conference on Saturday April 2, 2022 from 9:00 AM till 4:00 PM at the Best Western Park Hotel at 22 S. Carroll St, Madison, WI 53703 (virtual option to attend will be coming soon!)

    This is a one-day free program that all are welcome to attend. Childcare is available for all children with family members attending the conference. Lunch is not provided at this event.

    To see more, check out the flier here: TS_Conference_Flyer-3.pdf

    Register here: Online Registration Form


  • 02/06/2022 3:50 PM | Anonymous

    Wisconsin Attorney General Josh Kaul announced on January 31st the appointment of Trisha Kilpin to lead the Wisconsin Department of Justice (DOJ) Office of School Safety (OSS). A former Wisconsin teacher of the year, Kilpin comes to DOJ with over 30 years of experience as a School Social Worker in Greendale, Wisconsin.

    “Trisha Kilpin has decades of experience in Wisconsin schools, including experience training on and implementing school safety programming. We’re excited to welcome her to lead DOJ’s Office of School Safety, where she’ll be helping to keep schools across the state safe,” said AG Kaul. “The Office of School Safety has had many successes over the last four years due in no small part to the vision, leadership, and expertise of the office’s current director, Kristen Devitt. Thank you to Director Devitt for her years of work making Wisconsin schools safer.”

    As a Greendale School District Social Worker, Trisha Kilpin has been a committed advocate for comprehensive school safety, serving as a leader on district crisis and safety teams. She also frequently served as an instructor for others outside her district regarding how to keep their schools safe, in her role as an instructor for the National Association of School Psychologists (NASP) PREPaRE courses and as a leader in threat assessment model practices. In her former roles, Kilpin was a frequent contributor to OSS initiatives, serving on a work team to develop the Wisconsin Threat Assessment Protocol and on the Crisis Incident Response Team Advisory Committee. Kilpin balances preventative work by also consulting and leading trainings in Greendale Schools and across Wisconsin on best practices in response and recovery.

    Read the full press release here.

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