Date of Paper

5-2012

Type of Paper

Clinical research paper

Degree Name

msw

Department

socialwork

First Advisor

Ande Nesmith

Abstract

The two distinct professions of teachers and school social workers work within the same environment of a school and share a common responsibility of reporting child abuse and neglect to child protection services as a mandated reporter. This is a unique situation to study because each profession is guided by their board of standards and code of ethics. This paper examines the different levels of knowledge on the responsibility of being a mandated reporter between these two professions and to what extent do they work together toward the same goal. A mixed method survey design was used in order to capture both qualities of the quantitative and qualitative methods. Quantitative data collected allowed for statistical analysis and qualitative data collected captured the participants’ narrative answer allowing for additional breadth and depth to the study. Survey questions consisted of five categories: demographics, level of training, knowledge, experience and professional responsibility. The findings of this study suggest that teachers and social workers do have common knowledge about their responsibility as a mandated reporter and that is to recognize child abuse and neglect and to make a report to the child protection services (CPS). However, responses to the open-ended questions on the survey suggest that there are differences between how teachers and social workers go about making the report.

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