Reflections on Working with Rural Migrant School Children and Their Families


  • Rachelle Rosario Michigan State University
  • Joanne Riebschleger Michigan State University


rural, migrant, children, families, cultural competency, schools


The aim of this paper is to relay the reflections of my experience as a Latinx school social worker and about my work with children and families identifying as rural and migrant. A de-identified real-life mental health crisis case scenario is provided. The case scenario contains the voices of a child and a parent living in a rural migrant camp. The content of the voices was paraphrased from the school social workers’ post-crisis contact with a high school student and her mother. Professional first-person content is the voice of the social worker. The case vignette is followed by a combination of the social worker’s observations and information drawn from the professional literature about challenges and opportunities for rural schools to provide culturally sensitive practices for migrant children and families. Specific practice recommendations are offered for working with rural, migrant youth, particularly pertaining to child mental health per the case scenario.

Author Biographies

Rachelle Rosario, Michigan State University

Rachelle Rosario, MSW, LMSW, is Dual Doctoral Student, School of Social Work and Chicano/Latinx Studies in the College of Social Science, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI (

Joanne Riebschleger, Michigan State University

Joanne Riebschleger, PhD, LMSW is Associate Professor Emeritus and former Director of the PhD program, School of Social Work, Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI (





How to Cite

Rosario, R., & Riebschleger, J. (2023). Reflections on Working with Rural Migrant School Children and Their Families. Reflections: Narratives of Professional Helping, 29(3), 126–135. Retrieved from



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