A social worker helping a student.

Social Work

Social Work

The Toronto Catholic District School Board (TCDSB) is committed to helping students reach their full potential. Social Workers, as members of an interdisciplinary team, help students, their families and schools deal with the social, emotional and behavioural difficulties which interfere with a student's adjustment and achievement in school.

School Social Workers hold a minimum of a Master's Degree in Social Work. TCDSB Social Workers have a variety of cultural backgrounds and languages, which are assets in serving the students and their families.

How We Help


  • Cope with personal issues and family stress which affect their learning.

  • Improve relationships with others.

  • Attend school regularly.

  • Improve their use of educational opportunities.

  • Explore and resolve parent-child conflicts.

  • Develop decision-making skills.

  • Understand themselves better.


  • Increase their understanding of their children's social and emotional needs.

  • Deal with family problems.

  • Learn more about the schools' programs.

  • Utilize school and community resources effectively.


  • More fully utilize their resources in meeting the educational, social and emotional needs of students.

  • Understand the psychosocial and familial factors which negatively affect students' abilities to learn.

  • Set up programs that help prevent or alleviate social problems.

What We Do

  • Assessment of problem situations.

  • Counselling individuals, families and groups.

  • Ongoing consultation with school staff.

  • Support for special classes.

  • Advocacy for new or improved programs to increase student success in school.

  • Crisis Intervention.

  • Referral to Community Agencies.

  • Student and parent education programs.

  • Preventative education programs.

How to Get Help

Your local school principal may make a referral to the school social worker serving your area. A student and/or parent may, in some cases, request a referral through school staff or contact the social worker or Social Work Department directly at 416-222-8282 ext. 2569.

Additional Services

  • St. Martin Catholic School: These school social workers provide counselling and other support services with youth, families and staff during a period of expulsion.

  • Attendance Counsellor: On referral from the school social worker, the attendance counselor assists with students who are habitually absent from school.

  • Autism Team Social Worker: As a member of the Autism Services Team, this specialized school social worker supports students, families and staff who work with children and youth diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder.

  • Behaviour Team Social Worker: These specialized school social workers support students, families and programs for children and youth with behavioural needs.

  • Chief Social Worker: This social worker provides support, consultation and direction to the social work department, attendance counsellor, behaviour Team and SAL.

  • Deaf & Hard of Hearing Social Worker: As a member of the Deaf & Hard of Hearing Team, this specialized social worker supports students, families and staff who work with children and youth who suffer from a significant hearing loss.

  • Learning Opportunity Social Workers: In select elementary and secondary schools, these school social workers dedicate additional time to support students through individual counselling, group, classroom and school wide interventions.

  • Safe Schools Social Workers: These specialized school social workers support students, families and staff regarding violence prevention programs, risk assessment and other services that lead to safe and healthy schools.

  • Urban Priority Project Social Workers: These social workers dedicate specific time to secondary schools in an effort to alleviate barriers to learning, deliver early identification/intervention programs and promote a healthy, balanced lifestyle. They also develop close ties and build partnerships with community supports.

  • TIPPS Social Workers: These specialized social workers assist students, families and school staff in circumstances where a longer term suspension has occurred.