The Midwest School Social Work Council has named Kevin West of Des Moines Public Schools the 2018 Iowa School Social Worker of the Year.

The award honors one practitioner from each of the 11 states in the region and was formally presented at the group’s annual conference on October 18th.

“As a school social worker, I keep a busy schedule working with students in crisis; helping parents and teachers devise plans to allow students to better learn,” said West. “A typical day can include mundane paperwork, but also involves home visits, working with individual students or parents and classroom observation. I’m lucky to work in a district that supports my further education through additional trainings and conferences. I work with many school social workers, teachers and staff that are as good or better than I am. I was just lucky enough to be noticed. I would encourage anyone who reads this to find someone they work with and nominate them for an award – be it teacher of the year, social worker of the year or another award that is appropriate for their profession.”

West covers a lot of ground. Tuesday he was at Hoyt Middle School. Wednesday morning we caught up with him at Weeks Middle School and got him to stand still long enough to get his picture and his reaction to the award in between his work with students around the district.

“I was honored to have been selected as the Iowa School Social Worker of the year and I am thankful that Des Moines Public Schools allowed me to attend the ceremony in St Louis,” added West.

Now, like the MSSWC, “we are thrilled to celebrate Kevin’s professional accomplishments…and wanted to share this special recognition with you.”

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