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  • 18 Feb 2021 8:19 AM | Rachel Meffe (Administrator)

    What You Need To Know

    • Bedford City School District’s Faith Gordon is 2020's “Ohio School Social Worker of the Year"

    • She pulls from her own life experiences in order to connect to families going through hard times

    • Helping teens is her passion, and social work is her calling

    Read the full article here! 

    Congratulations Faith on this well deserved public recognition! 

  • 18 Feb 2021 8:19 AM | Rachel Meffe (Administrator)

    Budget Reconciliation Package – House Education and Labor Proposal

    BACKGROUND: The budget reconciliation process is in full swing, with House committees beginning to submit their proposals for what programs should be funded. The House Education and Labor Committee has proposed nearly $130B in grant funding directly to state and local education agencies and significant funding for social programs. However, even with a Democratic House and Senate, this massive spending bill is not guaranteed to pass.


    SSWAA has reached out to Congress to ask for additional funding to help families across this country and adequately fund education. However, now we need you to take action as well. Please write your Congressional delegation and urge them to provide this money for critical school programs.



    • Proposal Fact Sheet

    • $128.5B for the Elementary and Secondary School Emergency Relief Fund (ESSERF): This will go directly to state education agencies (SEAs), who are required to allocate at least 90% of the funding to local education agencies.

      • This section also includes a clause that requires education agencies to maintain spending for FY 2022 and FY 2023. This includes fiscal equity guardrails, which ensure that any state budget cuts do not disproportionately affect low-income students or districts.

      • Funding allocation will vary by state. Generally, allowable uses of ESSERF include staff training, mental health support, summer school and after school programs, funds for principals to address local needs, and other activities to continue school operations and employment of existing staff.

    • $40B to support childcare and head start programs

    • Increases federal minimum wage to $15/hour by 2025 •

    • Nutrition

      • Allows the P-EBT (Pandemic Electronic Benefits Transfer) program to be implemented for any school year where the COVID-19 public health emergency is in effect and provides for benefits to extend into summer.

      • Improvements to WIC

        • Authorizes the Secretary of Agriculture to temporarily increase the WIC Cash Value Voucher value to $35 per month for four months during the pandemic.

        • $390M for WIC Program Modernization

      • Expands the age of eligibility for the Child and Adult Care Food Program (CACFP) at emergency homeless shelters from 18 to 25.

    • Support for domestic/gender-based violence survivors 

      • $800M total for CAPTA and FVPSA

    • $4.5B for Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP)



    TAKE ACTION: CALL or EMAIL your representatives. Find your Member of Congress here and your Senators here. Each office will have a different policy for reaching them that will be on their website. You might be able to email them directly or copy and paste your letter into the form provided on their website. You will also be linked to their websites and telephone numbers (or Google them!). Tell Congress to act!



    HERE'S WHAT TO SAY: [Title and Last Name]: I am a school social worker in (city/county/school district) and a constituent of yours. I am writing to support the House Education and Labor Committee's proposal for the budget reconciliation bill. [INSERT PERSONAL STORY from your district about why we need funding for the programs listed above, or how it would impact you and your students if you get the chance!] I encourage you to show your support for school social workers and our students by voting in favor of the House Education and Labor Committee's proposal.

  • 21 Jan 2021 11:35 AM | Rachel Meffe (Administrator)

    Please enjoy and share our FY 2020 Annual Report as it provides a fantastic snapshot of our organization's work and commitment to our profession. 

    OSSWA Annual Report 2020.pdf

  • 11 Dec 2020 11:24 AM | Rachel Meffe (Administrator)

    Clearly we have all showed up and showed out this past year. But, I have no doubt that there is one out there that has proven to be one of our brightest stars. This is the time to make sure everyone knows who they are by nominating them as School Social Worker of the year.

    2021 SSW Nomination form

    We know as professionals that we do not work in silos. As the world of School Social Work advances there are many allies (friends) who have assisted in helping others recognize and respect our work. This is our opportunity to do the same for our "friend" so nominate them for this award.

    2021 Friend SSW Nomination form

  • 4 Jun 2020 3:05 PM | Rachel Meffe (Administrator)

    Join us every Thursday at 11:00 a.m. between May 28 - September 24 for the 2020 Ohio Prevention Conference Virtual Training Series. All sessions are free. Attendees of live sessions will receive continuing education hours for social workers, counselors, prevention specialists, and chemical dependency counselors. Click on titles to register.


    HOPES in Schools: A Systems-Change Approach to the Whole Child

    • Featuring: Kevin Lorson
    • June 4 at 11:00 - 12:15 p.m.

    Problem Gambling:
    Hidden in Plain Sight


    • Featuring: Scott Anderson
    • June 11 at 11:00 - 12:15 p.m.

    Prevention for the Resilient: Effective Strategies for Communities Experiencing Trauma

    • Featuring: Chardé Hollins 
    • June 18 at 11:00 - 12:15 p.m. 

    Collective Impact in the Urban Core

    • Featuring: Rhonda Ramsey Molina
    • June 25 at 11:00 - 12:15 p.m.

  • 26 Mar 2020 8:43 AM | Rachel Meffe (Administrator)

    Sharing the most pertinent resources being posted by our colleagues across the nation. 

    1. SSWAA Resources

    2. Schoolsocialwork.net Forum Resources

    3. OCR Short Webinar on Online Education and Website Accessibility - YouTube

    The Office for Civil Rights (OCR) presents this short webinar on online education and website accessibility. Learn more about OCR: www.ed.gov/OCR

    4. US DOE Supplemental Fact Sheet - Serving Children with Disabilities

    5. Coronavirus: 8 Ethical Considerations for Social Workers

    For parents/ students

    1. Audible stories streamed for free while schools are closed

    2. Covibook a coloring book to help children understand the COVID-19 crisis

    3. Talking to Kids About the Coronavirus | Child Mind Institute

    4. Home Chats: A Parents Guide to Healthy Conversations during the Coronavirus Outbreak - Growing Leaders

  • 18 Mar 2020 12:32 PM | Rachel Meffe (Administrator)

    OCR Announces Notification of Enforcement Discretion for Telehealth Remote Communications During the COVID-19 Nationwide Public Health Emergency

    Text below or here. 

    Today, the Office for Civil Rights (OCR) at the U.S Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced, effective immediately, that it will exercise its enforcement discretion and will waive potential penalties for HIPAA violations against health care providers that serve patients through everyday communications technologies during the COVID-19 nationwide public health emergency.

    This exercise of discretion applies to widely available communications apps, such as FaceTime or Skype, when used in good faith for any telehealth treatment or diagnostic purpose, regardless of whether the telehealth service is directly related to COVID-19.

    In support of this action, OCR will be providing further guidance explaining how covered health care providers can use remote video communication products and offer telehealth to patients responsibly.

    "We are empowering medical providers to serve patients wherever they are during this national public health emergency," said Roger Severino, OCR Director. "We are especially concerned about reaching those most at risk, including older persons and persons with disabilities," Severino added.

    The Notification of Enforcement Discretion on telehealth remote communications may be found at: https://www.hhs.gov/hipaa/for-professionals/special-topics/emergency-preparedness/notification-enforcement-discretion-telehealth/index.html.

    For more information on HIPAA and COVID-19, see OCR's February 2020 Bulletin: https://www.hhs.gov/sites/default/files/february-2020-hipaa-and-novel-coronavirus.pdf - PDF


  • 15 Mar 2020 10:19 AM | Rachel Meffe (Administrator)

    Sharing resources as well all attempt to navigate providing services remotely. 

    SSWAA webinar COVID-19 Health Crisis Getting through this together: School Social Work in a Changing Landscape Thursday, 3/19/20, 8pm EST

    School google accounts are HIPAA compliant and thus able to be used for meet (video conference) or voice (set up a dummy phone number).  gsuite_cloud_identity_hipaa_implementation_guide.pdf

    Zoom "can" be hippa compliant, but it is not automatically so, and cost more. Here is some info on it: zoom.us/docs/doc/Zoom-hipaa.pdf

    List of resources compiled by School Psychs



    2. MDE MEMO: Compliance Requirements of the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) Part C during a Public Health Emergency

    3. COVID-19 ("Coronavirus") Information and Resources for Schools and School Personnel

    4. Consult the NASW, ASWB, CSWE, CSWA Standards for Technology in Social Work Practice. Section 2A provides information about designing and delivering services. 

    5. NASW Ohio is hosting Using telehealth to adapt practice during COVID-19 outbreak (virtual meeting for NASW members) on Thursday, 3/19/2020 from 10-11a.

    6. CDC Guidance for School and Childcare Plan, Prepare, and Respond to Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)

    7. The CDC Mental Health and Coping During COVID-19

    8. The Child Mind Institute's Talking to Kids About the Coronavirus. Students may experience hunger, abuse, or lack of healthcare in their homes and with their families. Know local resources and be prepared to help.

    9. Anxiety and Depression Association of America Psychologist Jelena Kecmanovic's 7 Science-Based Strategies to Cope With Coronavirus Anxiety

    10. The Jed Foundation's Tips for Self-Care and Managing Stress

    11. National Association of School Psychologists' Talking to Children About COVID-19: A Parent Resource

    12. SAMSHA's Taking Care of Your Behavioral Health: Tips for Social Distancing, Quarantine, and Isolation During an Infectious Disease Outbreak

    13. SAMHA's Coping With Stress During Infectious Disease Outbreaks

    14. The Center for the Study of Traumatic Stress: Coronavirus and Emerging Infectious Disease Outbreaks Response

    15. Internet

    AT&T offers a discount for those who qualify for SNAP

    Comcast offers free internet for 2 months effective Monday, March 16, 2020

    16. PBS KIDS Daily Newsletter new for duration of school closures.

    17. Article "How to talk to your kids about the coronovirus"

  • 9 Mar 2020 8:03 AM | Rachel Meffe (Administrator)

    Suicide Deaths Increased by 45% Among All Ohioans and by 56% Among Youth Ages 10-24 From 2007-2018

    People may help save a life by knowing suicide warning signs and steps to take.

     ODH News Release Ohio Suicide Demographics Trends Report.pdf

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OSSWA works to protect and strengthen the profession of School Social Workers through advocacy, building relationships, and offering high-quality professional development.

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