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Library: Policy

340:75-1-231. New Child Welfare Specialist Development Plan

Revised 9-15-15

    Completion of the Child Welfare (CW) Specialist Development Plan also known as CORE training is mandatory for each CW specialist.  The CW Specialist Development Plan affords a uniform level of competency regardless of the specialist's level of education or field of study.  The development plan includes 10-14 weeks of CORE training, structured mentoring, mandatory specialized training, and intensive supervision.   • 1 


Revised 9-15-20

1.Child Welfare (CW) Specialist Development Plan also known as CORE training.

(1) CW CORE training.

(A) Schedule.CORE sessions are presented multiple times each year. Schedules are located on the training website CORE Companion Guide, used by specialists, supervisors, and mentors, is located on the website.

(B) Enrollment.Upon notification of a new CW specialist's start date, the immediate supervisor enrolls the CW specialist in CORE training by completing the online form at

(i) Each CW specialist begins CORE training no later than six weeks after his or her enter on duty date.The new CW specialist does not receive caseload assignments until he or she completes CORE training and the Comprehensive Skills Assessment.

(ii) When the new CW specialist is enrolled in CORE, the CW supervisor receives a confirmation email from the CORE coordinator.

(C) Attendance.The CW specialist's absences from CORE are minimal to ensure successful CORE training completion.

(i) Annual leave is not approved during CORE training.

(ii) When sick leave is taken during CORE training, the CW specialist attends the next available missed CORE session.

(iii) The CW supervisor emails the CORE coordinator immediately upon learning the CW specialist will be absent from CORE training and communicates as necessary regarding other absences.

(D) Make-up days.The program administrator/supervisor and CW supervisor, based on the number of training day absences, content missed, and CW specialist's progress in training, determine whether CORE make-up training days are necessary.

(E) Punctuality.The CORE coordinator reports the CW specialist's tardiness that exceeds a total of 30 minutes in any week of classroom training to the CW supervisor.

(F) Lodging.The CW specialist's lodging for CORE training is billed directly to the Oklahoma Human Services (OKDHS) but the mileage and per diem is filed on the CW specialist's travel claim paid from the district budget.

(G) Pre-CORE activities.When required pre-CORE activities and the CORE Checklist found in the Core Companion Guide are not completed by the new CW specialist prior to the start of the CORE training program, the specialist's CORE training is delayed.The CW specialist reports to the district office and attends the next scheduled CORE training session, when the pre-CORE activities and CORE Checklist are completed.

(H) On-the-job training (OJT).OJT activities are necessary for the transfer of skills and knowledge needed to become a CW specialist.The new CW specialist is supported by the CW supervisor and allowed time to:

(i) complete the activities listed in the OJT Specialist Workbook.Recommendations for when to complete OJT activities during CORE are included in the Workbook;

(ii) practice newly acquired skills in the work environment through OJT activities; and

(iii) complete the OJT activities assigned during CORE training.

(2) Structured mentoring.

(A) Mentoring relationship.Working with a skilled mentor is the most effective method to transfer learning from the classroom to the job.A mentoring relationship provides the CW specialist the opportunity, while under supervision, to utilize classroom concepts, knowledge, and skills in real-life situations.

(B) Mentor assignment.

(i) The CW supervisor selects the most appropriate mentor for the new CW specialist based on mentoring skills and the CW specialist's anticipated job assignment.

(ii) The mentor is a CW specialist from the same supervisory group unless a qualified CW specialist is not available, necessitating the assignment of a CW specialist from another group.

(iii) A CW supervisor may serve as a mentor only when the supervisor is able to fulfill each of the mentoring responsibilities.

(C) Mentor qualifications.A mentor:

(i) is an OKDHS CW professional with one or more years of CW experience and has completed CW specialist III certification;

(ii) is a professional with professional ethics judgment, and outstanding CW skills who can present the overall CW program to the new CW specialist;

(iii) understands and models the purpose and philosophy of CW policy and practice; and

(iv) is respected by CW personnel and children and family services professionals in the community.

(D) Mentor responsibilities.Specific responsibilities and instructions for mentors are found in the OJT Workbook for Supervisors and the CORE Companion Guide.

(E) Documenting mentor assignments.The CW supervisor documents the dates of the mentoring relationship on Form HCM-111, Performance Management Process (PMP), Section F, Summary/Development Plan for the mentor.

(3) Mandatory specialized training.Each CW specialist completes mandatory Level 1 training for the assigned program after completing CORE training.Remaining Level 1 trainings are completed but within 18 months of the CW specialist's enter on duty date.The CW specialist is automatically enrolled in mandatory Level 1 training upon completion of the Comprehensive Skills Assessment.Requirements for Level 1 trainings are found on the training website

(4) Intensive supervision for new CW specialists.The CW supervisor provides intensive supervision for the new CW specialist during CORE training and through completion of Certification Phase 3.Intensive CW supervision responsibilities are listed in (A) through (C).

(A) Prior to the CW specialist's enrollment in CORE training, the CW supervisor:

(i) does not assign the new CW specialist a caseload;

(ii) reviews pre-CORE training information with the CW specialist and explains the New CW Specialist Development Plan format;

(iii) completes the activities on the pre-CORE Checklist found in the CORE Companion Guide;

(iv) assigns a mentor to the CW specialist, recognizing that the mentor has great influence on the specialist's attitude and philosophy and ensures the mentor is familiar with his or her responsibilities;

(v) allows the CW specialist to shadow experienced CW specialists on a variety of job assignments as described in the OJT Specialist Workbook; and

(vi) discusses with the CW specialist the role of CORE training, the CORE training evaluation, and the Specialist Certification required during the CW specialist's probationary period.

(B) During CORE, the CW supervisor:

(i) provides and explains OJT assignments and monitors completion of each activity;

(ii) discusses OJT activities with the CW specialist, completes the OJT document, and signs documentation forms as required;

(iii) verifies that the CW specialist completed OJT assignments, with required approvals, for return to CORE training; and

(iv) assists the CW specialist with filing the mileage and per diem claims, when appropriate.The CORE workshop announcement is used to document travel.

(C) After the CW specialist completes CORE training, post-CORE Level trainings, and is provisionally certified, the CW supervisor:

(i) assigns the CW specialist no more than 50 percent of a caseload;

(ii) completes coaching and observations required for completion of Certification Phase 2;

(iii) assigns the CW specialist 75 percent of a caseload six months post-CORE training;

(iv) completes coaching and observations required for completion of Certification Phase 3;

(v) assigns the CW specialist 100 percent of a caseload at nine months post-CORE training;

(vi) ensures required Level 1 training for the CW specialist is completed;

(vii) schedules and conducts weekly conferences;

(viii) does not allow the CW specialist to perform a new activity, such as supervising visits or creating an Individualized Service Plan, when the specialist has not shadowed an experienced CW specialist on a similar activity; and

(ix) reviews the accountabilities on the specialist's Form HCM-111 with the CW specialist.

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