In all three of the states, FPS staff had higher levels of education (all significant at p £ .001). In all three states, comparing public agency and FPS staff, a smaller proportion of public agency staff held a degree at the Masters level or higher (18% vs. 89% in Kentucky, 14% vs. 52% in New Jersey, and 5% vs. 65% in Tennessee). A small percentage (7%; n = 14) of public agency staff in New Jersey and one public agency respondent in Tennessee reported an education level less than a Bachelor's degree. Of the fourteen respondents in New Jersey with less than a Bachelors degree, approximately half reported their positions as case manager. The other half of those New Jersey respondents as well as the one Tennessee respondent with less than a Bachelors degree reported their positions as caseworker.
There was a fair amount of variability in workers' responses to questions about the field of study for the highest degree they obtained - particularly among public agency staff. The majority of staff (ranging from 51% in Tennessee public agencies to 94% in Kentucky FPS agencies) indicated that their degree was in social work or social services. Other frequently named fields of study included education, law or criminal justice, and management or administration.