California Occupational Guides

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Summary Guide for

Child, Family, and School Social Workers in California

May also be called: Adoption Specialists; Case Managers; Caseworkers; Child Protective Services Specialists; Child Welfare Workers; Family Preservation Caseworkers; Family Service Caseworkers; Foster Care Social Workers; Geriatric Social Workers; Licensed Clinical Social Workers; and Occupational Social Workers.

What Would I Do?

Child, Family, and School Social Workers provide services and assistance to improve the social and psychological functioning of children and their families. Their job is to maximize the well-being of families and the academic functioning of children. They may assist single parents, arrange adoptions, or help find foster homes for neglected, abandoned, or abused children.

Most Social Workers work 40 hours per week; however, some occasionally work evenings and weekends to meet with clients, attend community meetings, and handle emergencies. Some, particularly in nonprofit agencies, work part time.

Will This Job Fit Me?

The job of Child, Family, and School Social Workers will appeal to those who enjoy interacting with people, as well as providing service to others.

What Wages and Benefits Can I Expect?

The median wage in 2016 for Child, Family, and School Social Workers in California is $48,117 annually, or $23.13 hourly. The median is the point at which half of the workers earn more and half earn less.

Change to Hourly Wages
Annual Wages for 2016Low
(25th percentile)
Median
(50th percentile)
High
(75th percentile)
California$36,380$48,117$66,196
Source: EDD/LMID Occupational Employment Statistics Survey, 2016 Wages do not reflect self-employment.
View Wages for All Areas

Most employers offer benefit packages that include health, dental, vision, and life insurance, holidays, vacation, sick leave, and retirement plans.

What is the Job Outlook?

Social Workers should enjoy good job prospects, especially those who specialize in the aging population. More job opportunities are expected in rural areas, where it is often difficult to find and retain qualified Social Workers.

How Do I Qualify?

A master’s degree in social work (MSW) is required for most positions. Many agencies also require a California license in clinical social work from the State Board of Behavioral Sciences.

Finding a Job

Direct application to employers remains one of the most effective job search methods. Newspaper classified ads and Internet job listings also provide helpful local job leads. Those interested in civil service jobs should contact State, county, and city personnel offices or visit their Web sites. One may also apply at private agencies, colleges, placement bureaus, and professional associations or learn about job openings through ads in professional journals.  Online job opening systems include JobCentral at www.jobcentral.com and CalJOBSSM at www.caljobs.ca.gov.

To find your nearest One-Stop Career Center, go to Service Locator. View the helpful job search tips for more resources. (requires Adobe Reader).


Learn More About Child, Family, and School Social Workers