The School Social Work program provides assistance to high risk students to cope with the pressures they face and to function more successfully in school.  

Objective 1 : Crisis intervention and referral services will be provided to students who pose a threat of immediate danger to themselves and others.

The School Social Workers' first priority is to respond to student situations which involve immediate threat of danger to self or others. Such intervention may be consultative (helping staff work through the situation) or direct intervention. In most cases where on-going therapy is indicated, the School Social Worker will refer the student to an outside agency. Referrals should be made with parental consent. The School Social Worker must deal with crisis situations as the top priority. The primary responsibility of the School Social Worker is to address problems associated with impaired school performance.

The School Social Worker will coordinate efforts to ensure that students referred to other agencies are appropriately assisted. In some cases advocacy services may be required. Please refer to the LKSD manual entitled "School Procedures for the Possible Suicidal Youth" in handling this type of crisis.

Objective 2 : Personal counseling services will be available on site to all students.

In addition to the Site Counselor and/or School Community Advocate, all teachers are expected to be able to provide some basic counseling services to students. This relationship primarily involves active listening coupled with gentle guidance. The establishment of a warm, caring atmosphere in the classroom is one of the most critical elements in successful student performance. Clear, consistent expectations and logical consequences for behavior are also a necessary part of this basic counseling and a positive growth environment.

Some situations may require more extensive counseling services. In these cases, the student should be referred to the School Social Worker. An assessment will be made to determine how the child's needs can be adequately met, utilizing local resources whenever possible.

With parental consent, the School Social Worker may also refer the student to Mental Health, if it is determined that their involvement will benefit the student and his/her family.

Objective 3: Family Counseling and/or parent consultation will be available to students and their families.

It is recognized that family and community issues affect a student's school performance. School Social Workers often intervene on a broader basis by providing services to the student's family. Such intervention may involve home visits, parent conferences, classes on parenting skills, and family counseling.

School Social Workers may be available to consult with parents or community groups on matters that affect student performance and growth.



Social Work Department
Patty McMillin, LMSW, Lead Social Worker
Box 305, Bethel, Alaska 99559
(907)543-4874 FAX-543-4925