February, 2015
It's Not the Age It's the Mileage

Les Helms, L & L Training Solutions, Inc., OCWTP Trainer


Generational Culture is an interesting and complex topic. Because of its complexity there are unfortunately many misconceptions about the topic. One of the major misconceptions is that if a person was born during a certain range of years then that person necessarily falls into a specific generational culture. That is not at all true. Much has been written and many people have been trained using this inaccurate assumption. This has led to considerable misunderstanding and confusion .

It is more correct to say that during a certain range of youthyears is when a specific generational culture was created. A Generational Culture doesn't disappear simply because a certain arbitrary date has passed. The fact that a new Generational Culture is beginning to come into existence doesn't mean the previous one no longer exists. Multiple Generational Cultures coexist for extended periods of time. In fact because there are many factors besides age which contribute to Generational Culture often children are being raised in different Generational Cultures at the same time. Because of this a young person may associate more with an "older" culture or vice versa.

There is a lot of information available on working with different generations. Click here for an additional resource.
Observing Caseworkers during Home Visits

Ruth McMonagle, MSW, MBA


As you strive to balance the multi-faceted demands of supervision in a constantly changing work environment, one dimension of supervision that could be lost in this hectic environment is the direct observation of worker's skills during home visits. While observing worker's interactions with clients during meetings and court are important and provide an opportunity for you to observe various caseworker skills, different skill sets are required of workers during home visits. As a supervisor, you need to be able to assess these skills for new workers, workers having performance issues, and veteran staff.

Make Sure Your Caseworkers Conduct Effective Home Visits

The OCWTP is prepared to help you make sure your caseworkers conduct effective home visits. Although you are accountable for the work of your unit, it is impossible to observe and know what happen in every visit. There are, however, strategies that can be used to ensure home visits are occurring as mandated and that caseworkers make effective use of these visits. OCWTP has two resources to support supervisors in this area: coaches who work directly with you and your staff and a Supervisory Companion Guide to help you coach your staff.

Supervisor Coaching

OCWTP coaches are prepared to help you coach staff in these skills. They are able to come to your unit and develop a coaching plan to meet your and your unit's specific skill development needs either coach you as you work with staff, or coach collaboratively with you as you work with  staff. To schedule a coach or to learn more about this opportunity, contact your RTC. Click here if you need contact information. 

Supervisory Companion Guide

This guide provides an overview of the online workshop Effective Home Visits: A Three-Session Online Course. It can be used with staff going through the course or on its own. It includes recommendations for ways supervisors can help coach these skills and support their staff as they use these skills with the children and families with whom they work.

Components and resources of this course can be used in a number of ways. Supervisors can:

  • Use course components with individual staff or the entire unit

  • Identify specific areas that staff need to strengthen (such as documentation) and focus on specific skills

  • Plan to have staff complete the entire program and use unit meetings to process content and share results of the field application assignments

For each learning session, the Supervisory Companion Guide includes:

  • Key learning points

  • Indicators that staff may have learning needs

  • Suggestions for how you can support staff during or after they have taken the course

  • Ways to customize the learning session to meet the needs of your staff 

Participate in a Distance Learning Opportunity for You and Your Staff!


EHVEffective Home Visits: A Three-Session Online Course


Ohio's Child and Family Services Plan identified the need to enhance caseworker visits with children and families as one of Ohio's priorities over the next five years. In the spirit of collaboration, NCORTC is sponsoring two statewide offerings of a three-session online course that addresses skills and strategies needed to plan, conduct, and document effective home visits. The course can be taken by caseworkers and supervisors from any part of the state from their own desk. Click here to learn more about the course. Registration deadline is March 27th.

Introducing the New ITNA/IDP Process
The OCWTP released its new online Individual Training Needs Assessment (ITNA) / Individual Development Plan (IDP) process for PCSA caseworkers on January 1st.  We are pleased to report the new process is streamlined to increase its efficiency and effectiveness for caseworkers and supervisors.  Please take a moment to visit the "ITNA/IDP Hub" on the OCWTP Website: www.ocwtp.net/ITNA_IDP.html to learn more about the new process. We highly encourage supervisors and workers to complete the one-hour ITNA/IDP Context Module (just-in-time distance learning), to understand how the ITNA/IDP process fits into the larger concepts of competency-based training and educational supervision, and to receive strategy tips on how to maximize the process.  Workers and supervisors who complete this module through E-Track will receive one hour of licensure credit. Directions on accessing the module are included on the "ITNA/IDP Hub" webpage.  For more information on new ITNA/IDP process, contact your Regional Training Center using the contact information included on the webpage.
The SACWIS Spotlight
 Recent Enhancements and Changes
Jennifer Watson, Office of Families and Children


The ODJFS SACWIS team has been incredibly busy rolling out enhancements to the SACWIS system. Click here to read about some newly released enhancements that have been created to save you time and frustration.

Superstar Supervisor!
Congratulations Tennille Ali, Montgomery County Children Services Supervisor!

Nominated by: Dale Hotaling, Director of the Western Ohio Regional Training Center


Tennille Ali

Tennille Ali was the very first University Partnership Program (UPP) graduate hired at Montgomery County back in October of 2004. She is now doing a wonderful job as a supervisor there. She also serves on the UPP Steering Committee and takes current UPP students under her wing.


Here are a couple of her colleagues observations:


Although very shy Tennille was an excellent student. She did her internship at Clark County and was voted outstanding student of the year at Clark County. Although Clark County wanted to hire Tennille, there was a hiring freeze then and she was hired at MCCSB. Since that time Tennille and I have kept in contact and I have been thrilled with her progress from UPP student to CW worker and now as a supervisor. Tennille has a UPP student this year and I'm as impressed with her supervision as I was with her as a student and now colleague. Tennille definitely has found her voice and confidence and very much deserves this honor.


Jo Ellen Layne, LISW-S
UPP Campus Coordinator
Wright State University
I have known Tennille for 10 years now. She and I went to undergrad together at Wright State and have worked together since we graduated. I met her when she was a senior in the UPP Program (then it was called CWWPEP) and I was a junior in the program. I really used her as a sounding board for advice and support. I remember always asking her questions about her experiences senior year so I always knew what to expect next. She was hired a year before me at the agency, so I was able to get her input and advice again about what to expect. We both became supervisors in the same year, too (2012). In 2013-2014 we became UPP student supervisors together and have been able to support each other throughout our careers. Tennille has always been more than a coworker, she has been a good friend who has been there for me during every milestone in life and career. Tennille and I have been work out buddies, lunch buddies and even roommates at PCSAO. 


I know that Tennille has made it through some very challenging times as a worker and as a supervisor and I respect her professionalism, commitment and passion for child welfare. I hope to be able to continue our adventures together for years to come!


Kristen Sparks, LISW-S

Ongoing Supervisor

Montgomery County Children's Services 


I was one of Tennille's professors in the WSU UPP program. As the director of Montgomery County JFS Children Services Division it has been a thrill to see Tennille, as well as many other UPP students, grow and progress in their child welfare careers.  Tennille is a perfect example of how the UPP program successfully develops professionals with a passion for child welfare!


Deb Downing, MSW, LISW-S
Assistant Director

Children Services Division
Montgomery County Department of  Job and Family Services


Congratulations Tennille!

Do you have someone you want to nominate as a "Superstar Supervisor"? Email supervisor@ihs-trainet.com and tell us about them!
Voices From the Field
Below is a collection of articles written by your peers. In them you'll read about their experiences, challenges, as well as the meaningful and special parts of their jobs that drive them to come to work every day.

What's in a Job Description? 

          Kelly Hickle-Lentz, Wood County Job and Family Services, Children's Services Supervisor
My Experience with Group Decision Making
          Jennifer Miller, Madison County Job and Family Services
Announcing the 21st
Annual Eastern Ohio Leadership Conference


The East Central Ohio Regional Training Center (ECORTC) and ODJFS Akron Field Office are proud to present the 21st Annual Eastern Ohio Leadership Conference, "Leadership Challenges...Going, Going, Gone!" The conference, which is open to all statewide CPS and DJFS leaders, will be held on March 25, 26, and 27, 2015, at the Carlisle Inn in Sugarcreek. As always, this conference is specifically designed to address the tough challenges facing today's CPS and DJFS leaders from across Ohio by infusing innovation, diversity, and evidence-based information. It's also a wonderful opportunity for leaders to exchange ideas, network, and problem-solve.


There is no conference fee...a big plus with tight budgets in today's economy!


 Click here to access the Conference brochure.


If you have any questions, please contact Darla Zajack at ECORTC at 740.432.2355 or e-mail her at Darla.Zajack@jfs.ohio.gov.

Save the Date put this on your calendar
The 30th PCSAO Annual Conference
The Journey Home: Partnering for Permanency
October 21-23, 2015
Visit PCSAO.org for additional conference details.


Upcoming Supervisor Training in Southeastern Ohio

Washington County Children Services is hosting a training for direct service supervisors. The training is on Wednesday, April 15, from 8:45 to 4:15. The address is Washington CCS, 204 Davis Avenue, Marietta, OH 45750. The training counts for the following credits: 6.5 OCWTP hours, 6 social work, counselor, and supervision licensing hours. This learning may be used to meet the nine hours required by the OCSWFTB rule for LISW-S Supervision Designation. To register, contact: SEORTC at 740-592-9082.

The OCWTP is Seeking New Trainers


The OCWTP is seeking excellent caseworkers and supervisors to train CAPMIS, SACWIS, and Caseworker Core content. We are looking for individuals in good agency standing who are experts at CAPMIS and SACWIS, and who may choose  to apply their expertise to caseworker core training, CAPMIS training, and/or SACWIS Coaching.  Interested candidates should contact the CAPMIS/Core Team at CAPMIS@ihs-trainet.com or CaseworkerCore@ihs-trainet.com for more information. 

OCWTP Resources for Supervisors
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