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Child-Maltreatment-Research-L (CMRL) List Serve

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Welcome to the database of past Child-Maltreatment-Research-L (CMRL) list serve messages (10,000+). The table below contains all past CMRL messages (text only, no attachments) from Nov. 20, 1996 - June 11, 2018 and is updated quarterly.

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Message ID: 8623
Date: 2010-09-12

Author:Larry Breitenstein

Subject:Re: Foster home safety

Both Carol and Karen's description is similar in Pennsylvania. However, although standards for licensing are the same, as a former public agency administrator my staff would occasionally see a private agency offer an "approved" foster home which my staff had earlier rejected as a foster parent applicant. The most common difference of how we view this foster family was whether or not they could work with the agency on the permanency plan for the foster child. In a few cases we did not find the physical conditions of the home acceptable. In one or two cases we were concerned over alcohol use of the applicant. A second major difference is the training given to foster parents after they are licensed. For years in Pennsylvania provided a great deal of standardized training for both public and private foster homes through the state's child welfare training program. Private agencies were not required to attend the training but in my experience most did. Five or six years ago, in a "cost saving" move by the state, training was significantly eliminated for foster parents from private foster care agencies. Most foster care in PA is provided by private agencies. When that decision was made I was serving as the CEO of an agency that provided foster care, and I view this decision as eliminating standardized training, and the beginning of a period of differing expectations for foster care. Private providers are expected to meet state standards, but there is great variation in how this is accomplished, interpreted and measured. The good news is that some private agencies now appear to be providing more training than the state child welfare training program. However there are no studies that I know of that compare the quality or variety of these training. Thus once the most minimal standards for licensing and monitoring have been met, there is a lack of standardized expectations for foster parents in Pennsylvania. Some private agencies appear to have excellent training available and are collaborating and sharing resources. Others maybe providing the minimum amount of training hours. Larry Breitenstein, Ph.D LSW Department of Public Health and Social Work Slippery Rock University ----- Original Message ----- From: Karen Faulk To: 'Child Maltreatment Researchers' Sent: Wednesday, September 08, 2010 1:24 PM Subject: RE: Foster home safety The description Carol provided of the process in Texas is very similar to the process in Louisiana. Private child placing agencies that are providing foster homes for children in state custody have state mandated guidelines for their home study, certification, training, and foster home management processes. These agencies must be licensed as child placing agencies. They submit documentation on prospective foster/adoptive homes to the state agency (regional offices of the state agency actually handle this) for SCR clearances as well as criminal background clearances. Clearances are required on all household members age 18 and above. Clearances, training, home study, and certification are required before children can be placed in the home. Karen Faulk , Ph.D., LCSW Prevention and Family Services Program Manager Child Welfare Section Louisiana Department of Children and Family Services E: karen.faulk@la.gov | P: 225.342.4089 ________________________________ From: bounce-6268620-12475200@list.cornell.edu [mailto:bounce-6268620-12475200@list.cornell.edu] On Behalf Of Carol Duncan Sent: Wednesday, September 08, 2010 9:36 AM To: Child Maltreatment Researchers Subject: RE: Foster home safety I previously worked for Child Protective Services in Texas as a supervisor in the foster and adoptive home program. All agencies (both CPS and private agencies) that are responsible for placing children must be licensed as a Child Placement Agency, and are regulated by the Texas Dept of Family and Protective Services Residential Child Care Licensing Division. The licensing standards require that anyone who cares for children, including foster and adoptive parents, adolescent children in the home, and any staff of the foster home, must undergo a thorough background check, including a home study, pre-service training, references and criminal and child abuse registry checks. The private child placing agencies submit the names and identifying information to the licensing division and they run the checks for them, the same as if it were a foster home licensed by CPS. The only difference between a home licensed by CPS and a private agency home that I know of is that CPS staff who do foster home checks have full access to the CPS database and would know if there had been a previous investigation of the family, even if it had been ruled out or classified as "Unable to Determine." This information would be available to them in making a decision about the family's fitness to foster. However, a private child placing agency would not have access to information about prior investigations that were ruled out or unable to determine, as the licensing division only releases the information about investigations classified as "Reason to Believe." Carol S. Duncan, LCSW Manager, Child Abuse and Domestic Violence Prevention Office Dallas Independent School District 2909 N. Buckner Blvd., Suite 505 Dallas, TX 75228 (972) 502-4182 Fax: (972) 794-3528 cduncan@dallasisd.org Confidentiality Notice: This email message, including all attachments, is for the sole use of the intended recipient(s) and may contain confidential student and/or employee information. Unauthorized use and/or disclosure is prohibited under the federal Family Education Rights & Privacy Act (20 U.S.C. §1232g, 34 CFR Part 99, 19 TAC 247.2, Texas Government Code 552.023, Texas Education Code 21.355, 29 CFR 1630.14(b)(c)). If you are not the intended recipient, you may not use, disclose, copy or disseminate this information. Please call the sender immediately or reply by email and destroy all copies of the original message, including attachments.

Both Carol and Karen's description is similar in Pennsylvania. However, although standards for licensing are the same, as a former public agency administrator my staff would occasionally see a private agency offer an "approved" foster home which my staff had earlier rejected as a foster parent applicant. The most common difference of how we view this foster family was whether or not they could work with the agency on the permanency plan for the foster child. In a few cases we did not find the physical conditions of the home acceptable. In one or two cases we were concerned over alcohol use of the applicant. A second major difference is the training given to foster parents after they are licensed. For years in Pennsylvania provided a great deal of standardized training for both public and private foster homes through the state's child welfare training program. Private agencies were not required to attend the training but in my experience most did. Five or six years ago, in a "cost saving" move by the state, training was significantly eliminated for foster parents from private foster care agencies. Most foster care in PA is provided by private agencies. When that decision was made I was serving as the CEO of an agency that provided foster care, and I view this decision as eliminating standardized training, and the beginning of a period of differing expectations for foster care. Private providers are expected to meet state standards, but there is great variation in how this is accomplished, interpreted and measured. The good news is that some private agencies now appear to be providing more training than the state child welfare training program. However there are no studies that I know of that compare the quality or variety of these training. Thus once the most minimal standards for licensing and monitoring have been met, there is a lack of standardized expectations for foster parents in Pennsylvania. Some private agencies appear to have excellent training available and are collaborating and sharing resources. Others maybe providing the minimum amount of training hours. Larry Breitenstein, Ph.D LSW Department of Public Health and Social Work Slippery Rock University ----- Original Message ----- From: Karen Faulk To: 'Child Maltreatment Researchers' Sent: Wednesday, September 08, 2010 1:24 PM Subject: RE: Foster home safety The description Carol provided of the process in Texas is very similar to the process in Louisiana. Private child placing agencies that are providing foster homes for children in state custody have state mandated guidelines for their home study, certification, training, and foster home management processes. These agencies must be licensed as child placing agencies. They submit documentation on prospective foster/adoptive homes to the state agency (regional offices of the state agency actually handle this) for SCR clearances as well as criminal background clearances. Clearances are required on all household members age 18 and above. Clearances, training, home study, and certification are required before children can be placed in the home. Karen Faulk , Ph.D., LCSW Prevention and Family Services Program Manager Child Welfare Section Louisiana Department of Children and Family Services E: karen.faulkla.gov | P: 225.342.4089 ________________________________ From: bounce-6268620-12475200list.cornell.edu [mailto:bounce-6268620-12475200list.cornell.edu] On Behalf Of Carol Duncan Sent: Wednesday, September 08, 2010 9:36 AM To: Child Maltreatment Researchers Subject: RE: Foster home safety I previously worked for Child Protective Services in Texas as a supervisor in the foster and adoptive home program. All agencies (both CPS and private agencies) that are responsible for placing children must be licensed as a Child Placement Agency, and are regulated by the Texas Dept of Family and Protective Services Residential Child Care Licensing Division. The licensing standards require that anyone who cares for children, including foster and adoptive parents, adolescent children in the home, and any staff of the foster home, must undergo a thorough background check, including a home study, pre-service training, references and criminal and child abuse registry checks. The private child placing agencies submit the names and identifying information to the licensing division and they run the checks for them, the same as if it were a foster home licensed by CPS. The only difference between a home licensed by CPS and a private agency home that I know of is that CPS staff who do foster home checks have full access to the CPS database and would know if there had been a previous investigation of the family, even if it had been ruled out or classified as "Unable to Determine." This information would be available to them in making a decision about the family's fitness to foster. However, a private child placing agency would not have access to information about prior investigations that were ruled out or unable to determine, as the licensing division only releases the information about investigations classified as "Reason to Believe." Carol S. Duncan, LCSW Manager, Child Abuse and Domestic Violence Prevention Office Dallas Independent School District 2909 N. Buckner Blvd., Suite 505 Dallas, TX 75228 (972) 502-4182 Fax: (972) 794-3528 cduncandallasisd.org Confidentiality Notice: This email message, including all attachments, is for the sole use of the intended recipient(s) and may contain confidential student and/or employee information. Unauthorized use and/or disclosure is prohibited under the federal Family Education Rights & Privacy Act (20 U.S.C. §1232g, 34 CFR Part 99, 19 TAC 247.2, Texas Government Code 552.023, Texas Education Code 21.355, 29 CFR 1630.14(b)(c)). If you are not the intended recipient, you may not use, disclose, copy or disseminate this information. Please call the sender immediately or reply by email and destroy all copies of the original message, including attachments.