The Salary of a CPS Social Worker

CPS social workers provide counseling to children and adults.
CPS social workers provide counseling to children and adults. (Image: Jupiterimages/Creatas/Getty Images)

CPS, or child protective services, social workers identify and report cases of child neglect or abuse. They usually meet with the parents and children to better understand the situation. Subsequently, these workers will either remove the child from the parents' care or provide counseling. In some instances, the CPS social worker will recommend special educational programs for adults. A CPS social worker sometimes recommends foster parents or adoption for neglected or abused children.

Annual Median Salary

CPS social workers earned annual median salaries of $40,210 in 2010, according to the latest available data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Median salaries appear in the middle of lists and can vary somewhat from average salary figures. The middle half of all CPS social workers earned median salaries between $32,270 and $52,450 per year. The top 10 percent earned median salaries of $68,030 and above. The bottom 10 percent earned annual median salaries of $26,170 and below.

Average Salary by Industry

CPS social workers' salaries can vary considerably by industry. For example, those working in elementary and secondary schools earned the highest average salaries at $57,100 per year, per the bureau. Those in alternative schools earned the second highest salaries at $55,260 annually. CPS social workers earned $55,040 per year on average working for junior colleges. In psychiatric and substance abuse hospitals, they earned annual salaries of $50,230. And those working in the legal services industry averaged $49,760 per year in salary.

Average Salary by State

CPS social workers earned more in certain states. For example, those in Connecticut earned the highest annual salaries at $61,310, according to the bureau. They earned their second highest salaries in New Jersey at $56,420 per year. They earned significantly lower annual salaries in states like Kentucky, South Dakota and West Virginia at $37,300, $36,050 and $30,220, respectively.

Average Salary by Metropolitan Area

CPS social workers earned their highest annual salaries in the Nassau-Suffolk, New York, metropolitan area at $66,030, per the bureau. They earned their second highest salaries in the Waterbury, Connecticut, area at $65,770 per year. Those in the Oakland-Fremont-Redwood City, California, area earned salaries of $61,920 annually; and those in the Hartford-West Hartford-East Hartford, Connecticut, area made $61,620 per year in salaries. Some of the lowest-paying metropolitan areas include the Santa Fe, New Mexico, Johnstown, Pennsylvania, and Dubuque, Iowa, areas, where CPS social workers earned $35,640, $30,330 and $28,400 per year, respectively.

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