I am reaching out to inquire about the screening process for field instructors. Do you inquire about any sanctions on a field instructor/supervisor's license prior to placing a student with them? And has anyone ever become aware of a situation where they discovered a sanction on a license? How did you handle that situation? If anyone has any familiarity with a situation like this, your input and experience would be greatly appreciated!
This is a great question and has me thinking. I typically do a license search for our supervisors; however, it is only for our state (so if a supervisor was licensed and had a sanction in another state, that wouldn't show). Also, we have had some cases where we use agency supervisors who are not licensed social workers - for example our Department of Health and Human Services workers (CPS, foster care, etc.) are often social workers but our state does not require them to be licensed and so many are not.
We have not run into an issue where a supervisor has a student placed with them and has an ongoing complaint/sanction that I have been made aware of but if I was to become aware of this I would issue and determine whether the violation warrants replacing the student (or switching agencies). I actually don't think that we have language in our internship manual that covers this. If others do, I would love to see that language - if anyone feels comfortable sharing that.
Great question, thank you for posing it to this group.
We do require our field instructors to be licensed because that is a requirement in Texas to call yourself a social worker. We ask for the license number and expiration date but nothing beyond that. However, I assume that we would not work with them if we could see a sanction on the license. We have our students sign a code of conduct and it also requires that they abide by the Code of Ethics. It would be hyprocritical in my book to allow the student to be supervised by someone with a sanction. It's why we also require licensing, as we require our graduating MSW students to take the licensing exam (not required to pass). Lynn
D. Lynn Jackson, Ph.D., LCSW, ACSW, FNAP (she/her)
Assistant Dean for Strategic Initiatives
Professor of Professional Practice/Director of Field Education
TCU Department of Social Work
TCU Box 298750
Fort Worth, TX 76129
333 John Carlyle Street, Suite 400Alexandria, VA22314
Phone+1 703 683 8080