July 2015
It's Not a Matter of Personal Power or Being Tough

Lifting UP

Do you know what it means to be an effective supervisor or manager? Do you know the secret to becoming an effective supervisor or manager?


If you're interested in knowing more, I encourage you to link to the following article, Remember the Source of Your Power.


This article is as it appeared in The Mentor...Ideas for Leaders newsletter, June 30, 2015. Published by WPG - Healthier Workplaces, the newsletters often provide excellent ideas you can use in your supervisory work. Click here if you'd like to be added to their mailing list. 

Join the Movement: Recovery Is Beautiful!

By: Cheri L. Walter, CEO, Ohio Association of County Behavioral Health Authorities


Recovery Is Beautiful is about hope and the promise of the fact that life can be better once recovery is achieved. It does not negate the fact that recovery is hard and at times very difficult and it focuses on the fact that recovery should be celebrated!


With the Recovery Is Beautiful movement, we are working to change the conversation about mental illness and addiction. We're talking with individuals, families, professionals, and community members to make sure they understand that mental illness and addiction are diseases, that they are treatable, and that people recover.


Click here to learn more about the Recovery Is Beautiful movement.



Normalcy and the Reasonable and 
Prudent Parent Standard Guide

By now, you have probably heard the term "normalcy" and "Reasonable and Prudent Parent Standard" used at your agency. The OCWTP has created a brief guide that explains these concepts. The tool was developed for foster caregivers, but you'll find the information is relevant and applicable to your role.

Help Us Help You! Getting the Most Out of the ITNA

The online ITNA for caseworkers is out, it's streamlined, and it's fabulous! Our goal is to gather ITNAs for all PCSA caseworkers by December 31st, providing a complete picture of workers' high-priority training needs in counties, regions, and the whole state.  This will help us provide you with tailored learning opportunities to meet your county's specific needs. If you haven't already completed the process with your workers, why wait?  Here's how to get started: www.ocwtp.net/ITNA_IDP.html.


But wait-there's more!  We are gearing up for a January 2016 release of an online ITNA for SUPERVISORS, allowing you to weigh in on your own high-priority training needs and get the learning support you deserve!    

Voices from the Field: Completing the ITNA/IDP
Karen Wolfe, Fairfield County Job and Family Services, Family Services Ongoing Supervisor

I have been employed at Fairfield County Protective Services for over twenty-six years. Throughout my employment with Protective Services,    I have completed numerous ITNAs as a caseworker and a supervisor, never clearly understanding the purpose and what happened after the completion of the document. The new ITNA/IDP process, however, is refreshing!


Together supervisor and caseworker complete the whole process. It's a time for my caseworkers and me to spend at least an hour or an hour and a half discussing their growth and the tools they need to assist them with becoming more confident and competent.


With the completion of the IDP, caseworkers are able to identify trainings that meet their needs and contribute to their growth. The tool is useful within Clinical Supervision for supervisor and caseworker to develop a road map for future success.  

Superstar Supervisor!
Congratulations Alexandra Patsfall, HamiltonCounty Children Services Supervisor!

Nominated by: Ben Hannah, Staff Training Coordinator of Southwest Ohio Regional Training Center


Alexandra Patsfall

Alexandra Patsfall has shown dedication to the field of child welfare. Although she is a step away from direct practice, she always has the best interests of the children and families that are served by the caseworkers in her unit. She can often be seen filling in for the caseworkers in her unit and doing home visits or whatever is needed to get the job done.


Her care and compassion for the families and children we serve is always Alexandra's top priority. An example of this is her recent work with an adolescent. This youth was abandoned by his mother, and his main concern was to remain connected to his siblings. When the youth spoke with someone he trusted, he was advised that his best bet of staying connected with his siblings was to enter a Planned Permanent Living Arrangement and Independent Living. The youth then requested this from the Juvenile Court Magistrate. When this was brought to the attention of Alexandra Patsfall, she made arrangements to meet with the youth. She discussed the pros and cons of Independent Living and then asked him a simple question: "Do you want a family?" The youth's answer was "yes." At the 23rd hour, the move to Planned Permanent Living Arrangement was halted, and the agency began searching for an adopted family to care for this confused teen. More importantly, Alexandra made sure the youth stayed connected with his siblings. This is just one example of the

advocacy Alexandra provides for the children and families that we serve.


Congratulations Alexandra!

Do you have someone you want to nominate as a "Superstar Supervisor"? Email supervisor@ihs-trainet.com and tell us about them!
PCSAO Supervisor Pre-Conference to Focus on Supervising for Retention 
The 30th PCSAO Annual Conference
The Journey Home: Partnering for Permanency
October 21-23, 2015

The first day of the PCSAO Annual Conference is the Supervisor Pre-Conference and this year it's an event you won't want to miss!


The keynote speaker will be Charmaine Brittain, a nationally known leader in child welfare. Ms. Brittain has authored three books: Child Welfare Supervision (2009), (co-authored with Cathryn Potter); Helping in Child Protective Services (2004); and Understanding the Medical Diagnosis of Child Abuse and Neglect (2006). In addition to the keynote address, Ms. Brittain will also present one afternoon session. Other interactive afternoon sessions will focus on problem-solving three challenges in supervision and improving practice and performance with peer review.

Visit PCSAO's website for additional conference details.

Tell Us Know Who You Supervise: Child Welfare Staff, Adult Protective Services Staff or Both

In future editions of The Forum we're going to include articles and information geared towards Adult Protective Services (APS) supervisors. We'd like to know who how many of our readers supervise APS.

The ProtectOHIO Kinship Strategy Self-Directed Learning


Implementing the ProtectOHIO Kinship Manual course (E-Track Session 201-90-DL2-S) is now available as a distance learning course.  It mirrors the classroom version of the Kinship Strategy course and consists of three components: a workbook for caseworkers, a supervisor companion guide, and seven on-line presentations. This course offers 5.5 hours of training credit. In addition, 1.5 continuing education credits can be applied towards either social work or counseling licensure.


Click here to access the online manual and, workbooks, and several online presentations.

A Special Note to Supervisors

By Sandy Parker, MSW, LISW, Supervisor Training Manager, IHS     

2015 marks my 39th year in child welfare. Well over half of that time has been spent supervising caseworkers, a job I've found extremely rewarding. Over the years though, there have been a number of occasions during which I've seriously questioned: Is this child welfare system I'm in doing right by the children and families we serve? ... Are we fighting a losing battle? It's so easy to get discouraged by the difficult cases, the huge workloads, the lack of resources, the public criticisms, and yes, even the lack of genuine commitment, caring, and willingness to do good work we sometimes see in some child welfare professionals.


Admittedly, there are times I still question whether we're fighting a losing battle. But you know it's you who renews my hope. Just last week I had the opportunity to observe a supervisor training. The participants in that workshop were truly invested in their learning, their staff, and the people they serve. I actually felt inspired by them! It's the same each time I have the opportunity to meet with the Supervisor Advisory Team, a group made up of supervisors from across Ohio. When I'm with them, I feel their energy, their desire to be effective leaders, their commitment to develop excellence in their staff and to ensure children and families receive the best services possible. It isn't always perfect; it isn't without challenges; it's child welfare. And I truly believe Child Welfare is in the best of supervisory hands here in Ohio.


It's a privilege to work with you and for you. I look forward to our continued efforts to protect children, strengthen families, and achieve permanence for those we serve. 

OCWTP Resources for Supervisors
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