Middle School Social Worker  - APPLY


Challenge Preparatory Charter School (“Challenge Prep”) is a community-based public charter school that was founded in 2010 to serve students and families in the Far Rockaway section of Queens, New York. We currently serve grades K-5 and are in the midst of expanding to grades K-8 by the 2018-19 school year. We are seeking a Middle School Social Worker who is eager to help grow the school’s curriculum, develop innovative instructional techniques, and accelerate learning for our middle school students so they are prepared for college-preparatory curricula when they reach high school. Successful candidates will demonstrate passion and commitment both within their classrooms and among the broader community as the “challenge” at Challenge Prep is to provide our students with a world-class education and serve as a beacon for excellence throughout the community.


Our school’s mission is to cultivate the intellectual, social, emotional and ethical development of our students and prepare them for long-term success both inside and beyond the classroom. We aim to accomplish this mission by building a culture among students, faculty, staff, parents and community members that conveys excitement about learning, fosters creativity and collaboration, and celebrates success.  

All members of the Challenge Prep community, including teachers, staff and school leadership: 

  • Share a common understanding of what quality teaching looks like by adopting the Danielson Framework for Teaching. 
  • Believe that how children learn is as important as what they learn, and that academic success is inextricably tied to building social-emotional competencies. 
  • Take full responsibility for the academic progress of our students and incorporate innovative methods of evaluating the effectiveness of faculty, staff, and school leadership across all grade levels and program areas. 
  • Conduct annual professional evaluations that use multiple measures to determine effectiveness, including classroom observations and student outcomes.
  • Provide intensive supports for new teachers to help ensure their success.


The Middle School Social Worker will support the middle school in addressing the social, emotional, developmental and emotional needs of the school’s students and families, and in helping students’ and families’ access appropriate services and resources. The Social Worker reports to the to the Middle School Principal.

Primary Functions

  • Counseling students whose behavior, school progress, or mental or physical impairment indicate a need for assistance, diagnosing these students' problems and arranging for needed services.
  • Consulting with parents, teachers, and other school personnel to determine causes of problems such as truancy and misbehavior, and to implement solutions.
  • Developing and reviewing service plans in consultation with students, their families and school staff, and performing follow-ups assessing the quantity and quality of services provided.
  • Collecting supplementary information needed to assist students, such as medical records, or school reports.
  • Supporting school staff in addressing issues such as suspected child abuse and neglect. Acting as school liaison with the New York City Administration for Children’s Services (ACS).
  • Assisting with such legal issues as hearings and providing testimony to inform custody arrangements.
  • Providing, finding or arranging for support services for Challenge Prep middle school families, such as child care, homemaker service, prenatal care, substance abuse treatment, job training, counseling, or parenting classes, to prevent more serious problems from developing.
  • Referring students to community resources for services.
  •  Maintaining case history records and preparing reports.
  • Addressing emergency situations impacting students—e.g. leading group counseling sessions that provide support in such areas as grief, stress or chemical dependency.
  • Arranging for medical, psychiatric, and other tests that may disclose causes of difficulties and indicate remedial measures.
  • Serving as a liaison between students, homes, schools, family services, child guidance clinics, courts, protective services, doctors and other contacts, to help children who face problems such as disabilities, abuse or poverty. 
  • Interviewing students individually, in families, or in groups, and assessing their situations, capabilities, and problems, to determine what services are required to meet their needs.
  • Supporting the School Principal in student disciplinary issues.

Minimum Qualifications

  • A Master’s degree or higher degree in Social Work, with clinical and supervisory  experience preferred.
  • Appropriate New York State Certification.
  • Demonstrated and successful record of prior employment as a counselor or social worker in a middle school educational environment.
  • Demonstrated ability to work productively with staff and with diverse populations of students, parents and families—including students, parents and families with limited English proficiency.
  • Demonstrated understanding of issues facing children and youth, especially those from immigrant families and poverty-level families, in urban areas.
  • Commitment to continuous improvement and learning through professional development.
  • Bilingual (English/Spanish), helpful.