Core courses are offered to build foundational skills at the beginning of a social worker’s tenure and when they first promote to a leadership position.
Regional Core Training
Regional Core Training (RCT) is Washington state’s foundational training designed to prepare newly hired social service specialists to begin their careers in public child welfare for the State of Washington, Department of Children, Youth, and Families (DCYF).
Core training for new employees builds on knowledge, value, and skill objectives. Throughout Core, individuals have opportunities to learn via classroom instruction, simulation and one-on-one skill development support that encourage the transfer of learning and increase critical thinking.
Woven throughout RCT are several critical concepts, integral to best practice in child welfare and designed to maximize learning within context and with relevance to the work:
- Child safety, permanency and wellbeing;
- Critical thinking;
- Trauma-informed practice;
- Disproportionality and racial equity in child welfare;
- Cultural competency/cultural humility;
- Reflection and recognizing bias;
- Documentation skills in FamLink; and
- Program-specific job skills.
Upon completion of RCT, new hires participate in individual skill acquisition sessions four times within 90 days. These sessions focus on the following key practice areas:
- Case prioritization and organization;
- Family time; and
- Conditions for return home.
If learners need additional support outside of the identified sessions, a plan will be developed with the supervisor and learner.
The learner benefits from these sessions because they offer support and guidance specific to the demands of the job and focusing on transfer of learning.
Supervisor Core Training
Supervisor Core Training provides the foundation for effective supervisory practice in the child welfare system. This program prepares supervisors through learnings and field-based activities for their new responsibilities.
Supervisor Core Training is divided into three parts and builds on knowledge, value and skill objectives. Supervisors will be able to begin Part 1 on the first day in their new position. Each part of SCT runs consecutively. New supervisors are coordinated into small groups for peer-based learning activities throughout Part 2. Upon completion of Part 2, the new supervisor will receive coaching and professional development support as they need.
As required by legislation to maximize learning, SCT utilizes multiple modalities, including eLearnings, field-based learning, team-based learning, simulation, webinars and coaching sessions. This allows supervisors much more scheduling freedom. The time commitment is no more than four hours on any day.