NASW Foundation National Programs
NASW Social Work Pioneers®
Norris Class (1906-1992)
A national and international authority on the history and philosophy of social welfare, with special expertise in regulatory policy and licensing of child care facilities, Class was a professor of social work at the University of Southern California for more than three decades. Prior to joining USC, he had taught at the University of Oregon and was Oregon's State Director of Child Welfare services. Concurrent with his USC teaching, he taught for nineteen summers at Tulane University, bringing students from all over the United States and Western Europe to study child welfare licensing and protection with him.
Throughout his career, he was in demand from state and federal agencies to help in interpreting the need for, and the implementation of, policy and training centered on delinquency control and on licensing of day care and family foster care.
Among his lasting contributions are his consultation and guidance to the Health, Education and Welfare Department in the arena of research in child welfare. In 1946, he was a founder of the Delinquency Control Institute in the School of Public Administration at USC. This Institute continues to draw corrections personnel from around the world for its three twelve-week programs each year that focus on training police, probation, and other corrections personnel with regard to delinquency control. With the aid of a grant from a grateful student for his lifelong involvement in child welfare issues, a compilation of his papers on licensing was published just before his death. Class was the recipient of many honors from voluntary and public organizations.