Academic journal article Child Welfare

Editor's Page

Academic journal article Child Welfare

Editor's Page

Article excerpt

To Our Readers:

This issue of Child Welfare, the last issue of Volume 76, is also the last issue of its current editor's tenure. A wave good-bye is in order. A lifetime career in one field of endeavor-in this instance, graduate school in the late 1930s, followed by many years in the voluntary child welfare agency sector, and then by many years at this editor's desk-affords a perspective on the path the field has traveled.

Child Welfare, in its early forms, was initiated by the newly established Child Welfare League of America (CWLA) as its communicator of information to and from the child welfare field. The field was then in the throes of clearing out the warehousing of babies and dependent older children. Many returned to their families. For those who could not be returned, the field sought adoption or family foster care for the babies, and family foster care or what might be called cottage group care for the older children. The child guidance movement, in a parallel development, was taking shape in clinics and residential milieu therapy.

It was to these services and activities that two new entities, social work and the social worker, looked for the conceptual and practice foundation for a new profession, and much of what was being learned was published in Child Welfare. Applicability to practice was the watchword of CWLA and Child Welfare. In those early years, the number of graduate schools of social work rose slowly, and philosophical differences and debates grew with them. The usual curriculum comprised casework, group work in the settlement house setting, and community organization.

With the advent of the New Deal's massive efforts to rescue the nation from the depths of the Great Depression, and the ending of World War II, social work employment and social work academia expanded enormously, and the bachelor's degree and the doctorate were soon added to the academic career structure. …

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