8446 Court Alternative Specialist 1

Recruitment #PBT-8446-097608


This is a Position-Based Test conducted in accordance with Civil Service Rule 111A.  

Position Description:

The Court Alternative Specialist works with incarcerated clients of the Public Defender who are charged primarily with serious felony offenses, some of whom are referred to alternative sentencing programs; prepares and presents social history and mitigation reports to the court; advocates in the court before judges, prosecutors and probation officers; develops selection criteria of community agencies for use as placement sites that is acceptable for the criminal justice stakeholders; works with a wide range of public and private service agencies; carries out a variety of complex research activities, analytical studies of socioeconomic factors, and administration of programs related to the criminal justice system or other criminal or juvenile justice entities or programs and analyze criminal history records and provides consultation to outside groups and agencies on matters affecting criminal or juvenile justice programs.


Essential functions include but are not limited to:

  • Conducts assessments, collects data and writes reports in the field of criminal or juvenile justice system;
  • Prepares reports to illustrate specific problems affecting the criminal or juvenile justice system;
  • Prepares and maintains records and other project related reports and correspondence;
  • Prepares reports for submission to the Courts on behalf of individuals involved in the criminal or juvenile justice system; 
  • Provides training and educational opportunities for private and public service agencies and community based organizations;
  • Participates in outreach efforts;
  • Builds and maintains working relationships with private and public service agencies and community based organizations;
  • Conducts home and school visits;
  • Provides administrative support to various programs or units, including drafting letters in response to inquiries, preparing memos and spreadsheets;
  • Compiles and prepares technical, economic and social statistical data in the form of reports and graphs delineating demographic data relating to crime designed to implement the goals of the city-wide criminal or juvenile justice system plan;
  • Writes and edits reports and recommendations for criminal or juvenile justice programs and entities;
  • Serves as a resource person to various task forces, sub-committees, and agencies within the criminal or juvenile justice system or community based organizations on drugs, diversion, delinquency, and adult or juvenile treatment and rehabilitation;
  • Attends public meetings; 
  • Provides services and information to clients, such as providing referrals to community based programs, drafting expungement motions on behalf of clients;
  • Prepares follow-up paperwork or correspondence;
  • Coordinates and may supervise the work of subordinates engaged in program activities;
  • Performs related duties as required.

Minimum Qualifications

1. Completion of a four-year college or university with a baccalaureate degree with major coursework in the behavioral or social sciences and one (1) year of experience in a court referral program or closely related public service work.


2. An equivalent combination of training and experience as detailed in #1  above.


3. Possession of a valid California Driver's license.




  • Examples of social or behavioral science fields or courses include: anthropology, criminal justice, juvenile justice, economics, education, ethnic studies, history, human development, law, nursing, nutrition, political science, psychology, public health, social welfare, sociology, and women’s studies.   
  • One year full-time employment is equivalent to 2000 hours (2000 hours of qualifying work experience is based on a 40 hour work week).
  • License: Information on the application of a valid CA driver's license is required at the time of filing.  


Working Conditions: Must be able to work full time within the regular office hours of 8:00am – 5:00pm, and to travel throughout San Francisco and the surrounding cities on a daily basis to conduct visits at varied times of the day.    


Desirable Qualifications:

The stated desirable qualifications may be used to identify job finalists at the end of the selection process when candidates are referred for hiring.

  1. Extensive knowledge of principles, techniques and trends in alternative  sentencing programs
  2. Social commitment to justice issues in advocating on behalf of individuals in the criminal justice and juvenile system
  3. Knowledge of community based resources and the criminal justice and juvenile system
  4. Strong oral and written communication skills
  5. Team player with vision, passion and a commitment to criminal justice defense and juvenile justice reform
  6. Possesses cultural humility and a commitment to strength based models of treatment 
  7. Experience working with immigrant communities and low-income communities and those affected by the criminal justice system  
  8. Possession of a MSW or LCSW is highly desirable  
  9. Knowledge of public benefits available to noncitizens of various immigration statuses as well as services provided by community based organizations
  10. Bilingual Skills

How To Apply

Applications for City and County of San Francisco jobs are only accepted through an online process. Visit www.jobaps.com/sf to register an account (if you have not already done so) and begin the application process.

  • Select the desired job announcement
  • Select “Apply” and read and acknowledge the information
  • Select either “I am a New User” if you have not previously registered, or “I have Registered Previously”
  • Follow instructions on the screen

Computers are available for the public (from 8:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday) to file online applications in the lobby of the Dept. of Human Resources at 1 South Van Ness Avenue, 4th Floor, San Francisco.

Applicants may be contacted by email about this announcement and, therefore, it is their responsibility to ensure that their registered email address is accurate and kept up-to-date.  Also, applicants must ensure that email from CCSF is not blocked on their computer by a spam filter.  To prevent blocking, applicants should set up their email to accept CCSF mail from the following addresses (@sfgov.org, @sfdpw.org, @sfport.com, @flysfo.com, @sfwater.org, @sfdph.org, @asianart.org, @sfmta.com, @sfpl.org, @dcyf.org, @first5sf.org, @famsf.org, @ccsf.edu).

Applicants will receive a confirmation email that their online application has been received in response to every announcement for which they file.  Applicants should retain this confirmation email for their records.  Failure to receive this email means that the online application was not submitted or received.

All work experience, education, training and other information substantiating how you meet the minimum qualifications must be included on your application by the filing deadline.  Information submitted after the filing deadline will not be considered in determining whether you meet the minimum qualifications.

Applications completed improperly may be cause for ineligibility, disqualification or may lead to lower scores.

If you have any questions regarding this recruitment or application process, please contact the exam analyst, Arlene Laxamana, by telephone at (415)734-3321, or by email at Arlene.Laxamana@sfgov.org


Verification of Education, Experience, and/or License/Certificate:  

Applicants may be required to submit verification (proof) of qualifying education, experience, and/or license/certificate at any point of the selection process.

Verification of work experience must be on the employer’s letterhead, and must include the applicant’s name, job title, description of job duties, dates of employment, hours per week, and signature of the employer, supervisor, or appropriate representative. City and County of San Francisco (CCSF) employees do not need to submit verification of their City employment, but must submit written verification of outside experience. San Francisco City and County employees will not receive credit for experience obtained outside of their classification unless recorded in accordance with the provisions of the Civil Service Rule 110.9.1.

Applicants must submit a photocopy of their degree and/or transcript from an accredited college or university as proof of qualifying education.  Failure to submit verification of education and experience, when requested, may result in the rejection of the application.

Note: Falsifying one’s education, training, or work experience or attempted deception on the application may result in disqualification for this and future job opportunities with the City and County of San Francisco. 

Selection Plan

Minimum Qualifications Supplemental Questionnaire (MQSQ) (Weight - Qualifying)

Supplemental Questionnaire (SQ) (Weight - 100%)

Selection Procedures

Minimum Qualifications Supplemental Questionnaire (MQSQ)  (Weight: Qualifying):

Candidates will be prompted to complete a Supplemental Questionnaire as part of the online employment application. This Minimum Qualification Supplemental Questionnaire is designed to obtain specific information regarding an applicant's experience in relation to the Minimum Qualifications for this position. Applicants must also complete the official application. It is essential that applicants provide complete information in identifying their education, experience and training. The Minimum Qualification Supplemental Questionnaire will be used to evaluate if the applicant possesses the required minimum qualifications.

Supplemental Questionnaire (SQ) (Weight: 100%):

Candidates will be prompted to complete a Supplemental Questionnaire as part of the online employment application. The supplemental questionnaire is designed to measure their relative knowledge, skills, and abilities in job-related areas. The supplemental questionnaire may include, but is not limited to: knowledge of principles, techniques and trends in alternative sentencing programs; knowledge of the criminal and juvenile justice system; knowledge of modern research methods and ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with community based organizations, public and private agencies and the Courts.


Eligible List/Score Report:

A confidential eligible list of applicant names that have passed the civil service examination process will be created, and used for certification purposes only. An examination score report will be established, so applicants can view the ranks, final scores and number of eligible candidates. Applicant information, including names of applicants on the eligible list, shall not be made public unless required by law. However, an eligible list shall be made available for public inspection, upon request, once the eligible list is exhausted or expired and referrals resolved. The eligible list/score report resulting from this civil service examination process is subject to change after adoption (e.g., as a result of appeals), as directed by the Human Resources Director or the Civil Service Commission.

The duration of the eligible list resulting from this examination process will be  twelve (12) months, and may be extended with the approval of the Human Resources Director.  


The certification rule for the eligible list resulting from this examination will be Rule of Three Scores (RO3). Additional selection processes may be conducted by the hiring department prior to making final hiring decisions.

Conviction History

As a selected candidate for a job, you will be fingerprinted, and your fingerprints will be sent to the California Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). The resulting report of your conviction history (if any) will be used to determine whether the nature of your conviction (or arrest, in limited circumstances) conflicts with the specific duties and responsibilities of the job for which you are a selected candidate. If a conflict exists, you will be asked to present any evidence of rehabilitation that may mitigate the conflict, except when federal or state regulations bar employment in specific circumstances, such as:

  • Candidates for positions with the Unified School District and the Community College District may be disqualified from consideration should their conviction history not meet the standards established under the California Education Code.
  • Candidates for positions with the Recreation and Park Department may be disqualified from consideration should their conviction history not meet the standards established under California Public Resources Code 5164.

Having a conviction history does not automatically preclude you from a job with the City.

If you are a selected candidate, the hiring department will contact you to schedule a fingerprinting appointment.

Disaster Service Workers

All City and County of San Francisco employees are designated Disaster Service Workers through state and local law (California Government Code Section 3100-3109). Employment with the City requires the affirmation of a loyalty oath to this effect. Employees are required to complete all Disaster Service Worker-related training as assigned, and to return to work as ordered in the event of an emergency.


General Information concerning City and County of San Francisco Employment Policies and Procedures Important Employment Information for the City and County of San Francisco can be obtained at http://www.sfdhr.org/index.aspx?page=20 or hard copy at 1 South Van Ness Avenue, 4th Floor.

Information About the Hiring Process http://sfdhr.org/information-about-hiring-process

Copies of Application Documents Applicants should keep copies of all documents submitted, as these will not be returned.

Right to Work All persons entering the City and County of San Francisco workforce are required to provide verification of authorization to work in the United States.

Applicants with Disabilities http://sfdhr.org/information-about-hiring-process#applicantswithdisabilities

Veterans Preference Information regarding requests for veteran’s preference https://sfdhr.org/information-about-hiring-process#veteranspreference

Reasonable Accommodation Request  http://www.sfdhr.org/index.aspx?page=20#reasonableaccommodation

Clerical Errors May be corrected by the posting of the correction on the Department of Human Resources website at: http://www.sfdhr.org/index.aspx?page=20#announcementsdefinitions

Driver’s License requirement This position requires maintenance of a valid California’s driver’s license: http://www.sfdhr.org/index.aspx?page=20#license 

Terms of Announcement Applicants must be guided solely by the provisions of this announcement, including requirements, time periods and other particulars, except when superseded by federal, state or local laws, rules or regulations. Clerical errors may be corrected by the posting the correction on the Department of Human Resources website at www.jobaps.com/sf.

The terms of this announcement may be appealed under Civil Service Rule 111A.35.1. The standard for the review of such appeals is ‘abuse of discretion’ or ‘no rational basis’ for establishing the position description, the minimum qualifications and/or the certification rule.  Appeals must include a written statement of the item(s) being contested and the specific reason(s) why the cited item(s) constitute(s) abuse of discretion by the Human Resources Director.  Appeals must be submitted directly to the Executive Officer of the Civil Service Commission within five business days of the announcement issuance date.  


Exam Type:  ENTRANCE

Issued:  6/14/2019

Micki Callahan

Human Resources

Director Department of Human Resources

Recruitment ID Number: PBT-8446-097608

PDR/ ACL/ 415.734.3321




All employees hired on or after January 10, 2009 will be required (pursuant to San Francisco Charter Section A8.432) to contribute 2% of pre-tax compensation to fund retiree healthcare. In addition, most employees are required to make a member contribution towards retirement, ranging from 7.5%-13.25% of compensation. For more information on these provisions, please contact the personnel office of the hiring agency.

For more information about benefits, please click here.


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