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RUNNING HEAD: Organization Analysis

West Village Academy


Macro Theory and Practice
Denisa Llangos
03/05/15
EY 8514
SW 4020

RUNNING HEAD: Organization Analysis

Introduction
Setting out to understand a community is a major under taking. There is no single,
universally accepted method for understanding elements that make up a community. For a macro
practitioner, understanding means gathering as much information as possible in a particular area
of interest or concern, within the time available, and making the best-informed ethical decisions
is very much important. Identifying and dealing with organizational and community condition,
problems, and needs present a complex set of challenges to a social worker. (Netting, 2008)
Macro practice is social work practice designed to improve or modify some aspect of society.
Improvements or changes can be sought in organizational or societal policies and procedures that
regulate the distribution of resources to clients. These improvements might occur when the
clients are either not getting needed resources or when the resources are not provided as
effectively or efficiently as possible (Kirst-Ashman, p. 125) For a macro social worker it is often
much harder than micro as the problem/issue is a whole rather than one and changes dont come
immediate and in some cases none at all. The responsibility of a macro social worker is the same
as micro social workers but the efforts and changes are in a much larger scale. I am not really
familiar with macro practice but the internship that I am placed at I am familiar with individual
social work and little bit of macro. My internship is a school called the West Village Academy.
School social workers serve as the primary mental health providers for students and may be the
only counseling professionals available to students and their families to initially identify and
provide interventions for those issues. School social workers are employed by the school system
and therefore are an integral part of the policy and procedures that guide the system. According
to the West Village Academy school social workers maintain confidentiality and therefore build
trusting relationships with students, families, teachers, administrators, and other school personnel

RUNNING HEAD: Organization Analysis

to work toward the academic success of the student. The extent of involvement by a school social
worker can vary from one consultation, or a few sessions, to ongoing services. The social worker
at West Village Academy has set rules and guidelines to follow her routine and how to approach
each of her clients day-to-day bases. (http://www.westvillageacademy.org/)
Organization and Services
West Village Academy, located in Dearborn, MI was established in 1999 and is
authorized by Central Michigan University to provide students a quality education from
kindergarten through eighth grade. The Academy is located in Dearborn and serves students in
the surrounding communities including Detroit, Inkster, Taylor, and Dearborn Heights. The
enrollment data shows 61% of the student population is traveling from the urban areas of Detroit
and Inkster. The Academy served an average of 400 K-8th grade students over 3 years. West
Village Academy's Paraprofessionals, Teachers, Social Workers and Principal meet the No Child
Left Behind Act (NCLB) requirements for Highly Qualified. The experience level of key
teaching and learning personnel is Associate Degree to Master Degree in Education; ranging
from two years of teaching experience to thirteen years. Every school has its own story to tell.
The context in which teaching and learning takes place influences the processes and procedures
by which the school makes decisions around curriculum, instruction, and assessment. The
context also impacts the way a school stays faithful to its vision. Many factors contribute to the
overall narrative such as an identification of stakeholders, a description of stakeholder
engagement, the trends and issues affecting the school, and the kinds of programs and services
that a school implements to support student learning. The purpose of the Executive Summary
(ES) is to provide a school with an opportunity to describe in narrative forms the strengths and
challenges it encounters. By doing so, the public and members of the school community will

RUNNING HEAD: Organization Analysis

have a more complete picture of how the school perceives itself and the process of self-reflection
for continuous improvement. The West Village Academy is a nonprofit free lancing organization
run by the government to serve its community. Recently, the Panasonic Corporation awarded
West Village Academy with 15,000 for a complete Public Address (PA) system including
installation. According to the West Village Academy they were very honored to have been
selected and awarded the funds that will assist with communications throughout the building.
Mission Statement
West Village Academy, teaming with family and community, will support a nurturing and
respectful environment that develops independent thinkers and productive members of society
while focusing on core academic and problem solving skills. The Academy will strive to be a
learning community, which develops students to be well-rounded and productive citizens in
society. The agency believes in the importance of daily focus on academic achievement and the
incorporation of rigorous activities requiring independent thinking and problem solving skills.
All stakeholders are responsible for imparting positive self-worth to each student in a nurturing
and respectful school. The agency confidently believes in the conscious involvement of families
and the community in the development and advancement of student achievement. Students come
from various backgrounds and cities across the State of Michigan. In spite of the differences, the
common thread is the parents' desire for the best possible education for the students. The
Academy encourages parents to be involved in the decision making of teaching and learning and
program planning, implementation, and evaluation. Parents provide a pool of resources and
expertise about students. The Academy invites parents into the classrooms, encourages frequent
conversations with staff, and promotes participation in the offered programs. The outcomes result
in student and parent awareness of academic expectations and progress as well as strengthening

RUNNING HEAD: Organization Analysis

teacher connections with the home and cultural background. Additionally, the Academy hosts
many events throughout the year to engage families in learning and celebrating achievements.
The primary purpose is to enhance student achievement through a collaborative effort. The
Academy also fulfills its' mission, vision, and values through a myriad of programs and
expectations:
-Parent University is offered to equip parents with tools and strategies to aid in student
achievement.
-Hiring practices which seek caring and nurturing individuals who are passionate about
education of students and families in need
-Anti-Bullying School- zero tolerance for bullying within the school.
-Intervention Programs exist at the Academy to ensure all academic gaps are reduced to
better prepare students for grade level content across the curriculum i.e. reading and math
specialist, paraprofessionals, math intervention classes, after school tutorials, and social work
services.
-Facilitation of fundraisers and activities which allow students to give back to those in
need i.e. Red Cross Blood Drive, Jump Rope for the Heart- American Heart Association,
collection of crayons and coloring books for Childrens' Hospital.
-Rigorous curriculum across all content areas and for all grades, which challenge students to
higher order thinking skills. According to the School of Social Work Association of America
school social workers provide mental health services in schools and have specialized training to
meet students social-emotional needs. There has been no goal displacement since the school has
been opened and the goals remain open for more upcoming goals as every school year passes by.
The West Village Academy not only support the communities as described above but also give

RUNNING HEAD: Organization Analysis

academic, social, emotional and behavioral support to the students, families and also the school
staff.
Organizational Structure and Staffing
Michigan Department of Education (MDE) is a state agency of Michigan, in the United States.
MDE oversees public school districts in the state. The State Board of Education oversees the
Department of Education. MDE is in the top of the West Village Academy organizational chart
followed by Central Michigan University, which is the university that authorizes the academy
and gives them the education to for the students in the Dearborn community. The Central
Michigan University superintends the West Village Academy Board of directors, that are the
body of elected or appointed members who jointly oversee the activities of a the school
organization. The WVA Board of Directors overlooks the CAO/Superintendent which purpose is
to provide leadership, vision, motivation, organization and evaluation to all academic
departments, levels and divisions across and throughout the academy. The superintendent
oversees the curriculum coordinator, which is the principle of the school that takes care and
directs everything else that is left in the West Village Academy organizational chart. The
principle has the duty to overlook directly the instructional staff/paraprofessionals support staff,
the business manager and the Dean of students. Following, the Support Staff worries about the
intervention programs of the special education department and the 21st CLC before and after
school programs like the after school activities not included athletes and also the STAR program
that is formed for students participate in daily academic activities designed to improve test
scores, report cards, and homework completion. A variety of recreational programs will be
offered throughout the year including but not limited to: Martial Arts, Art, Glee Club, Academic
Games, Zumba, Yoga, Scrapbooking, Gymnastics, Little Hoopers, Get Fit, Hip Hop Dance,

RUNNING HEAD: Organization Analysis

Nutrition, and Running Club. Next, the business manager handles the office manager, pupil
accountant, transportation, food services and the title 1 coordinator. In the other hand the Dean
of students overlooks at the custodians, the social worker which role is to workers serve as the
primary mental health providers for students and may be the only counseling professionals
available to students and their families to initially identify and provide interventions for those
issues. In addition, the Dean of students also superintends the students support services when the
students need aid support, school support and the athletics. As social workers most of our jobs
are carried out from within human services organizations, and these organizations are formed to
carry out the functions of society. Ethnicity Data includes about 81% African American, 13%
White, 4% Hispanic and 1% multi-racial, Native American, and Asian. Special Education
programs represent 11% of the student population. Free and reduced is represented by 89%.
Positions are help with no discrimination and there is a small diversity in the school as stated
above. Organizations tend to be structured and have an overall goal to fulfill. Overtime
organizations can stagnate, lose sight of its mission and goals, and begin to provide services that
are unhelpful or even harmful to clients. This can occur because of inadequate resources, poor
leadership, poor planning, inappropriate procedures or structures, or a combination of these
factors (Netting, 213). Some of the issues that the minority faces in the organization are low
academic student math levels of competency and reading. There is a good amount of children
that need special ad and social work and a combination of both. There is a lot of families with a
low income and transportation. The organization is disability friendly. There is no nurse or
psychiatrist at the school those services are contacted when needed outside school.
Internal and External Environment: Relationship with Community

RUNNING HEAD: Organization Analysis

The organization achieves legitimization in its environment by the policies that take place. For
example there are policies and guidelines that the academy has to follow in order to remain open.
It has to be open 5 days a week, only 10 snow days the rest have to be made up, students have to
wear their uniforms at all times unless informed so, social work needed students must be checked
upon at all times, BIP are to always be renewed and parents are to be informed for everything
that goes on with the child and all staff members must maintain professionalism. As a school
have the right to also follow the student handbook for the school as staff members. The clients
come from within the community such as Dear those students stay there until their last day of
their school, which is 8th grade.

Theoretical Construct of Organization


Based on what I have learned from my organization and the above descriptions, Swot Analysis
and organizational chart I came to the conclusion that this organization runs with an authority
above authority like. Understanding organizations requires theories that seek to explain them.
Organizational theories address how organizations arise, why they take certain forms and how
they operate. As will all the theories, their value is judged by the accuracy with which describe
organizations and organizational behavior. (Netting, 2008) The theories that best describe West
village academy are the Bureaucracy and Organizational Structure, management theory and
Organizational culture. The Bureaucracy and Organizational Structure Organizational structure
refers to the way relationships are constituted within an organization. (Netting, 213) According to
Max Weber a well-known German sociologist some of the characteristics that apply to this
organization are positions in the organization are grouped into a clearly defined hierarchy, job
candidates are selected on the basis of their technical qualifications, positions reflect a high

RUNNING HEAD: Organization Analysis

degree of specialization based on expert training and rules of procedure are outlined for rational
coordination of activities. This theory explains my organization well because it run as a
hierarchy, where the system or organization in which people or groups are ranked one above the
other according to status or authority. For example, the curriculum coordinator oversees the other
employees and students yet she (the principal) has a higher authority over her head just like
mentioned above in the organizational chart. Each of those positions are clearly defined in their
own classified hierarchy following their characteristics. Everyone respects their role and follow
their tasks appropriately following the rules and laws that they pertain to which overlap to the
mission and the goals the organization is assigned too.
A Management theory that apples to my agency is Management by Objectives. Even
though West Village Academy is a non-profit agency, they operate by the Central Michigan
University. For an organization to arise and operate they need to meet certain goals and
objectives. To avoid organizational problems that misunderstanding exist between managers and
workers, educator Frederick Taylor developed the scientific management, which drives its name
from his emphasis on the need for managers to analyze the workplace scientifically. The goal is
to find the optimal doing a job, to develop the best tools for completing it, for workers abilities
and interest in particular assignments, and the next level of production the average worker can
sustain. (Netting, 217) This applies to the academy because we have a director who provides us
with task goals and directions in order to continue to be operated under West Village Academy
and to meet the requirements of Central Michigan University. For example, as we have too keep
seeing students that need social work that were the previous years and the most recent ones by
observation, referrals, family communication, develop assessments like a Behavior intervention
Plan (BIP), evaluate and repeatedly follow up on those students. These goals are met by the

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social worker, the resource aid professionals checked and reviewed by the directors such as the
principle and Dean of students and also they are reviewed and agree upon the parent of the
student. If those goals are not met than they are reviewed again and reimbursed to improve the
operation of the agency.
Organizational culture applies to West Village Academy as well. Within every human
services organization there is a certain culture. Organizational culture develops through shared
experiences. It is important in understanding any organization. When entering an organization,
one quickly perceives that established patterns occur within the system even if they are not
explicitly stated. (Netting, 238) The social worker who fulfills a role in a new organization must
be aware that these patterns may be so central to organizational functioning that they are taken
for granted by members of that organization. As I begin my journey into the academy I was
prepared at the organization culture and that I had to adapt as fast as I could so that my
experience there would start positive and easier. It can be a very difficult task as that every
organization may be stuck in a specific culture that does not change and sometimes as an intern
you have new ideas that might not take place even though you are eager about them. To get
adapted to the organization you have to show a great deal of interest to your job position and
employees, always giving ideas, participating, develop the staff habits and working tips, giving
help and know more about the actual organization to make you feel more comfortable to get
adapted to that specific culture. West Village Academy is very easy going and people friendly. It
runs every day at from early morning to afternoon hours. Staff and faculty makes sure that
students are in their best behavior in task and in their classrooms. Communication is the key
component at the Academy, everyone is aware of their surroundings, their students and their
parents.

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Recommendation
Using the information that I gained from the SWOT analysis, the organizational chart and other
sources is that I encountered during this paper I found out that West Village academy has more
strengths than weaknesses although there is always room for improvement. Some of the strengths
of my agency is that the school is located within the community and is surrounded by the
communities members therefore making it 100 percent safe and highly qualified. This is helpful
because a lot of kids walk to the school as it is very close to their home reducing the chances of
absence and missing work. The school social worker works every day during school hours
providing mental treatment and proper help to prevent students from stress or a mental chaos.
This is extremely helpful to the students because they do not have to make any appointments to
get social work when needed and their behavior is handled right away with no delay. I think that
the staff at the agency fulfill their description and role and meet their goals stated in the academy
mission. This may also be a weakness, as students often want to miss class and their learning to
abuse the social work treatment and its purposes. Also the teachers often send students to the
social worker even if something small happens to avoid that students disruption in class thinking
him or her is in need of those services. I believe that is a repeated norm in the West Village
Academy as it is preventing time and treatment from the students that actually are in need for
social work due to their illness and their behavior. The staff can use their professional judgment
to really observe these attitudes and not get them confused with other misleading attitudes.
In conclusion, after an in depth analysis of West Village Academy that I intern in, I
understand clearly that the agency does an outstanding job meeting the requirements set forth by
their directors. The agency fulfills the needs of their students, staff members, their community
on daily basis based on their mission statement and their requirements.

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West Village Organizational Chart


MICHIGAN DEPARTMENT
OF EDUCATION
CENTRAL MICHIGAN
UNIVERSITY
WVA BOARD OF
DIRECTORS
CAO/
SUPERINTENDE
NT
Curriculum
Coordinator
Instructional
Staf
Paraprofessiona
ls
Support Staf
Intervention
Programs
Special Education
Department
21st CLC
Before & After
School Programs

Business
Manager

Dean of
Students

Office
Manager

Custodia
ns

Pupil
Accounta
nt

Social
Worker

Transporta
tion

Student
Support
Services

Food
Service
Title I
Coordinator

References

Athletics

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Netting, Ellen; Kettner, Peter; McMurtry, Steven & Thomas, Lori (2012). Social Work Macro
Practice (5th Edition). Upper Saddle River, NJ: Pearson Education, Inc.
Kirst-Ashman, K., & Hull, Grafton H. (2010). Generalist practice with organizations and
communities (5th ed.). Belmont CA: Wadsworth / Thompson Learning.
NASW Code of Ethics, retrieved from www.naswdc.org
West Village Academy Mission Statement Information retrieved from
http://www.westvillageacademy.org/
School Social Work Association of America retrieved from http://www.sswaa.org/