Area Administrator Core Training (series)

Area Administrators need to achieve competency in understanding the child welfare practice as well as in the higher levels of systems management. This course provides Area Administrators with an introduction of baseline competencies for middle managers in public child welfare, and opportunities to develop and practice new skills regarding these competencies. Managing self, managing others, managing systems and managing outward are the four main themes integrated throughout this course.

Day 1: Foundations for Managers in Child Welfare
Day 2: Effective Relationships as a Manager
Day 3: Strategies for Effective Organizational Communication
Day 4: Growing and Sustaining Effective Internal and External Teams
Day 5: Essentials for Resource Management
Day 6: Strategic Thinking and Planning Tools for the Manager

Audience Description: 

This training is for Area Administrators only. A similar course is available for Supervisors, Program Managers, and Quality Practice Specialits that is called Leadership Training for Supervisors, Program Managers, and Quality Practice Specialists.

Comments from Learners:

“What we do is so difficult we rely on each other.  And part of that is building a strong team that all come from the same mission and vision. Some of my folks had been here for a long time and they were on the verge of burnout and I had to think differently about how to look at that. Like what still motivates you to come in? why do you do it? What keeps you coming? That tool [from the AA training] I’ve used, asking them what are their passions and how can I help them get there.”

“The team work portion [was the most valuable part of the training].  I had them all do the short version of the disk assessment and it brought up different communication styles and what we can expect in their management group.  The most meaningful part of this training is because of the team and the connection they have. It’s the driver of retention in my opinion and I want to work on building teams to retain people.”

“There are some trainings where they tell us to go back to our staff and our staff come back and say ‘no we’re not going to do that.’ But we go back and this is real, what he gives us [in this training] we can use.”

“The value for me is the value for staff, the budget the grant information shouldn’t be hidden if you disperse that in a good way it will encourage creativity.”

“I found it helpful to learn about the relationship with money and funding. The detail was really helpful, because I had a general idea. We always talked about half of our salary was IV-E but that’s not really true, it’s a more nuanced conversation.”

“I really enjoyed the activity around staffing the formula around how much staff we should have. I want to go back and look at what the formula looks like for us, I appreciated the discussion around what types of different data we can use and the value of it.”

Tribal Member who participated in AA training:

“[Learning about the value of] external stakeholders was valuable. We’ve done work in the tribe around [our] vision and mission. But in terms of values, strategic plans in terms of brining in other stakeholders was valuable information to remember to bring those folks into the discussion.”

Core Training
Delivery Method: 
Training Level: 
Area Administrators
Course Requires Coaching Session?: 
Registration Instructions: 

DCYF staff can register for Area Administrator Core Training (series) through the Washington State Learning Center (WSLC). For help with WSLC, please contact

Other workforce members can request registration for this course using the Alliance External Registration form. Use this if you are CWTAP, Tribal Workers, Private Agency, and Judicial Personnel (incl. CASA/GAL). For help with this webform, please contact Alliance Support via

Instructor Qualification: 

Peter Dahlin, MS, is an experienced child welfare worker, supervisor, administrator and educator in the public sector for nearly 30 years. He has provided curriculum development, training, and evaluation services to child welfare, foster care, and family service agencies throughout the country and in Quebec. He has trained extensively throughout Washington and California. His specialty areas include trainer, supervisor, manager and executive development, and he has developed and delivered numerous training programs in these areas. He has created advanced trainings for supervisors and managers, including a required three-year program for Los Angeles County. He teaches the core manager (AA) course in the State of Washington, and developed and delivered part of the Core Supervisor Series in the State of Florida. His curriculum development work and training delivery, including that of “train the trainer” has also included clients such as National CASA and Casey Family Programs. As the former director of the Bay Area Academy, he oversaw an 18-month recruitment & retention study reviewing practices in thirteen counties with an emphasis on succession planning, and he has consulted with San Diego State’s Southern Academy on developing and delivering part of its Executive Development Program. He also provides executive coaching to managers and deputies in San Diego Child Welfare Services.

Classes Available


DCYF Staff Register Here
See Registration Instructions

  • Feb 8, 2022 9:00AM to 4:00PM
  • Feb 9, 2022 9:00AM to 4:00PM
  • Mar 29, 2022 9:00AM to 4:00PM
  • Mar 30, 2022 9:00AM to 4:00PM
  • Apr 20, 2022 9:00AM to 4:00PM
  • Apr 21, 2022 9:00AM to 4:00PM