Hello! My name is Birgit Larson and I’m a School Social Worker with the Minneapolis Public Schools Citywide Deaf/Hard of Hearing kindergarten-8th grade Program here at Anne Sullivan Communication Center. I’ve worked with deaf/hard of hearing (d/hh) children and their families for 13 years. I have a bachelor’s degree in psychology and social work, and a master’s degree in social work from the University of Wisconsin-Madison. I am a Licensed Independent Social Worker (L.I.S.W.) and in addition to working with d/hh students I have also worked with students with autism through our district’s Early Childhood Special Education Program, as well as with our middle school here at Sullivan.
As a School Social Worker I’m able to provide a variety of support services to students, their families and the larger school community. My job is to learn each child’s strengths and needs so that I can help to make school a positive and successful experience for each student. If there are academic or behavior concerns about a student at school or home, I assist the team in coming up with positive solutions. I help to facilitate social skills groups with students, provide crisis intervention supports when needed, and am an adult in the program that students and families come to when needing to problem-solve around challenges at school, home, or in the community. I work to bridge communication between students, families, and the teaching staff. I also help parents know their rights as a parent of a child with special needs. I strive to be supportive of parents and families so that they can effectively participate in their student’s learning and educational planning.
In addition to helping support students, families, and teachers to work together towards making school a success for all children, I also help families find and access resources outside of school, such as health insurance, mental health services, clothing, housing, and food shelves.
Although I work specifically with deaf/hard of hearing students, I have additional roles in our larger school community and district. I provide support to the Deaf/Hard of Hearing Itinerant Teaching Team who serve students kindergarten through transition-age with hearing loss across our district. I also assist our school with problem-solving to help our students who are struggling with academic skills and/or behavior. I serve on our building's Site Emergency Team to help keep staff and students safe, and also help to put together our school yearbook. In addition, I help to coordinate district and state testing for our deaf/hard of hearing students at Sullivan. I will also be the site supervisor for our Americorps members who will be joining us for the 2011-2012 school year to work with our middle school English Language Learner students. And finally, I am on the planning committee that provides an annual safety fair for Twin Cities area students who are deaf/hard of hearing and the professionals that work with them.
If you are looking for help in finding supports in the community, don’t hesitate to contact me! I can be reached directly by phone at (612) 668-5022 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
3100 28th Street East, Minneapolis, MN 55406
Telephone: 612.668.5000 | Fax: 612.668.5010