More than 200 social workers are being placed in schools throughout Nevada this academic year. Reno Public Radio’s Noah Glick reports.
The Nevada Department of Education’s Office of Safe and Respectful Learning Environments, established during last year’s legislative session, is funding the addition of two-hundred-nine-point-five school social workers.
Amber Reid is the school social work liaison for the office. She says that while this is a great start, there are challenges in finding a qualified workforce.
“When we issue the award, we assume they’re going to be able to utilize the most funding," Reid says. "In actuality, it’s hard to find clinicians that are willing to work in schools. So they usually hire at the bachelor’s or master’s level, which then I can recapture those funds.”
Reid says it’s important to look long term.
“Even more important that we move and build in for sustainability, with the goal being eventually a social worker and school professional in every school in the state,” she says.
The Washoe County School District was originally awarded three school social workers in July, but are able to get another ten because of this recapturing of funds.