Clinical Social Work Journal

, Volume 46, Issue 4, pp 331–340 | Cite as

Infusing Clinical Supervision Throughout Child Welfare Practice: Advancing Effective Implementation of Family-Centered Practice Through Supervisory Processes

  • Cynthia A. LietzEmail author
Original Paper


Child welfare supervision is fundamental to advancing the quality of practice when seeking to ensure the safety, permanency, and well-being of children. Child welfare supervisors serve administrative, educational, and support functions as they oversee frontline caseworkers and direct service providers. Clinical supervision, a dialog-driven process of case review and consultation is situated within the educational function. The process of clinical supervision is essential to child welfare practice, because it prompts reflection and builds analytical thinking skills needed to address complex situations involved in child protection. Despite increased recognition regarding the importance of clinical supervision, child welfare supervision continues to focus primarily on administrative tasks. Organizational climate and external pressures push this administrative agenda. In addition, many child welfare supervisors lack experience, training, and therefore competency in facilitating clinical case reviews. Strengths-Based Supervision (SBS; Lietz 2013) is a model of clinical supervision that was developed to (a) increase child welfare supervisors’ intentionality regarding the importance of infusing clinical supervision into child welfare supervision and (b) advance the skills needed to implement this practice effectively representing one solution to this ongoing challenge.


Clinical supervision Family-centered practice Child welfare 


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.College of Public Service and Community Solutions, School of Social WorkArizona State UniversityPhoenixUSA

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