Archived Courses
Honors and Awards

Spring 2014

Policy and Practice in Child Welfare – 702.15
Tuesday - 11:00AM-12:50PM - Room: SB 215

Session 1 -January 27, 2014
- Introduction and Orientation to the Course
Resources and Readings:

 Overall Child Welfare Statistics   

AFCARS 20 Data

Glossary of Child Welfare Terms
What are poverty thresholds and poverty guidelines for families
in the U.S.?

Definition of Family: Families in Theory and Practice - Ann Hartman, 1986

Represent - A magazine that is the Voice of Youth in Foster care

Rise Magazine - A Magazine which publishes stories by and for parents affected by the child welfare system
Real Cases:  Integrating Child Welfare Practice Across the Social Work Curriculum

Multiple Transitions: A Young Child's Point of View about Foster Care and Adoption - Watch the Video
Multiple Transition Video Text

Watch this Great Two Part Series "WE INTERRUPT"
Listen to what Minnesota Youth in Foster Care have to say about Permanency in their lives.  This fabulous production was made possible by Minnesota Department of Human Services (DHS)

Session 2 -February 4, 2014
- Child Welfare History

Resources and Readings:

Elizabethan Poor Laws: Act for the Relief of the Poor 1601

Learn More About the Orphan Train Experience in American Child Welfare History

A Child's Journey Through the Foster Care System

How the Child Welfare System Works
Timeline of Major Child Welfare Historical Event

Mary Ellen Wilson (video)

Mc Gowan's chapter on CW History
Chapter Two - History, Bell & Sanders from:
Briar-Lawson, K., McCarthy, M, & N. Dickinson (Eds.). (2013).  The Children's Bureau: Shaping a Century of Child Welfare Practices, Programs, and Policies.  Washington, DC: NASW Press.

Chapter 3 Poverty, Berns, Briar-Lawson, & Kim

New From Represent: http://www.representmag.org/
New From Rise: http://www.risemagazine.org/

Session 3 -February 11, 2014
- Legislation in Child Welfare
Resources and Readings:

Session 4 -February 18, 2014
- Well being Issues: Supporting and Preserving Families

Resources and Readings:

Supporting & Preserving Families

Family Preservation and Support

Practice Notes on Family Support from North Carolina

Comprehensive Family Assessment Guidelines for Child Welfare


Focusing on Well-Being: Developing a Protective Factors Framework for Youth in Care, Part 1 (NRCPFC Teleconference/Webinar)

This free NRCPFC teleconference/webinar will present research on youth development, resiliency, neuroscience, and the impact of trauma on brain development, and will discuss how child welfare agencies and their partners can use this information to define and improve the overall well-being needs of youth in foster care. The presenters will also put forward a newly expanded, research-based Protective Factors Framework for adolescents that can serve as a guide for helping address the development needs of youth and improve their prospects for success. Presenters: Charlyn Harper Browne, Senior Associate and Project Director, Quality Improvement Center on Early Childhood at the Center for the Study of Social Policy, and Susan Notkin, Associate Director, Center for the Study of Social Policy. Click on the link below to learn more about this event and register to participate.

Focusing on Well-Being: Developing a Protective Factors Framework for Youth in Care, Part 2 (NRCPFC Teleconference/Webinar)

This free NRCPFC teleconference/webinar will present research on youth development, resiliency, neuroscience, and the impact of trauma on brain development, and will discuss how child welfare agencies and their partners can use this information to define and improve the overall well-being needs of youth in foster care. The presenters will also put forward a newly expanded, research-based Protective Factors Framework for adolescents that can serve as a guide for helping address the development needs of youth and improve their prospects for success. Presenters: Charlyn Harper Browne, Senior Associate and Project Director, Quality Improvement Center on Early Childhood at the Center for the Study of Social Policy, and Susan Notkin, Associate Director, Center for the Study of Social Policy. Click on the link below to learn more about this event and register to participate.
Focusing on Youth Well-being: New Information about Applying a Protective and Promotive Factors Approach for Adolescents in Foster Care - February 20, 2013 


Mallon & Hess - Well Being Overview

Session 5 -February 25, 2014
- Well Being Issues: Health, Mental Health Care and Educational Issues
Resources and Readings:

Health Care Issues

Meeting the Health Care Needs of Children in Foster Care
This presentation focuses on some of the key components in developing strategies to address improving performance in meeting the health care needs of children in foster care. Presented 10/24/2005 at the Annual National Association of State Foster Care Managers meeting by Jan McCarthy, Director of Child Welfare Policy, National TA Center for Children's Mental Health at Georgetown University.

The Foster Care Independence Act of 1999: Enhancing Youth Access to Health Care 
This article from the July-August 2000 Journal of Poverty Law and Policy discusses the option for states to extend Medicaid eligibility for young people who are under 21 and who on their 18th birthdays were in foster care under the custody of the state. In addition to implementing this option, states can take many steps through their child welfare agencies and Medicaid agencies to ensure that young people leaving foster care enroll in Medicaid and receive the services to which they are entitled.

Working Together: Health Services for Children in Foster Care
The New York State Office of Children and Family Services developed this manual with the assistance and advice of voluntary agencies and county departments of social services. The primary audiences are foster care caseworkers, supervisors, and persons responsible for the coordination of health services. It is not specifically designed for distribution to foster parents, child care workers, or health care practitioners. The policies, protocols, and legal footnotes are specific to New York State's locally administered, state supervised foster care system. However, it contains some more general information and serves as an excellent model

Check out the Health and Mental health Care Issues section of the Fostering Connection site on the NRCPFC website: 

Mental Health Care

Mental Health Needs of Foster Children and Children At-Risk for Removal
This article from the Virginia Child Protection Newsletter focuses on the mental health needs of children entering foster care and children at risk of entering care. The article explores the range of mental health needs and ways to address those needs using evidence-based practices. The article discusses ways to work with children as well as methods for parent and foster parent training. (2009)
Parental Mental Health and the Child Welfare System
Research indicates that children with parents/caregivers with significant mental health needs are at greater risk of involvement in the child welfare system. These resources describe promising practices for screening and treatment, tools and training, fact sheets, Web sites, and research to better understand how mental health and child welfare systems can work together to support parents and caregivers with mental health needs.
Check out Health and Mental Health Resources on the NRCPFC Website:
http://www.hunter.cuny.edu/socwork/nrcfcpp/ info_services/

http://www.hunter.cuny.edu/socwork/nrcfcpp/ info_services/

Listen to:
Emotional Well-Being of Children & Youth in Foster Care
On September 20, 2005, the NRCPFC and CWLA hosted the first of a series of teleconferences for state foster care and adoption managers on mental health issues. Listen to the audio files and download the handouts.
Focusing on Well-Being: Developing a Protective Factors Framework for Youth in Care - On February 29, 2012, NRCPFC hosted this webinar on well-being issues.

Strategies for Meeting the Mental Health Needs of Youth in Care 
The second teleconference in the NRCPFC/CWLA series was held November 29, 2005. Listen to the audio files and download the handouts.
Promising Practices for Addressing the Mental Health Issues Impacting Parents of Children in Foster Care The third teleconference in the NRCPFC/CWLA series was held January 31, 2006. Listen to the audio files and download the handouts.

Educational Issues
Q&A: Blueprint for Change: Education Success for Children in Foster Care
This resource from the Legal Center for Foster Care and Education is a “Question & Answer Factsheet” about the Blueprint for Change (a detailed framework that includes goals and benchmarks for children and youth that will help ensure their education success). It answers questions about the development of the Blueprint, its target audience, and how it should be used.

Helping Former Foster Youth Graduate from College: Campus Support Programs in California and Washington State
Campus support programs provide financial, academic, and other types of supports to help former foster youth succeed in college. However, relatively little is known about the impact of these programs on college retention or graduation rates. This Chapin Hall study by Amy Dworsky and Alfred Perez lays the groundwork for an impact evaluation by examining program implementation from two different perspectives. Researchers conducted telephone interviews with the directors of 10 campus support programs in California and Washington State. The interviews covered a variety of domains, including the population served, referral sources and recruitment, the application process, the provision of services and supports, program staff, relationships with stakeholders, and data collection. In addition, participants from 8 of the 10 programs completed a web-based survey that asked about their perceptions of and experiences with the program. The survey included questions about students’ demographic characteristics, referral and recruitment, the application process, reasons for participating in the program, services and supports received, unmet needs, contact with staff, and recommendations for improvement. The report concludes with several recommendations for moving forward with a methodologically sound impact evaluation of campus support programs for former foster youth. (2009)

Check out Education and Child Welfare Resources on NRCPFC http://www.hunter.cuny.edu/socwork/nrcfcpp/info_services/

Check out Educational Issues on the Fostering Connections website for the NRCPFC:  


Listen to:

Educational Stability for Children and Youth in Out-of-Home

On March 15, 2006, the NRCPFC and CWLA hosted a teleconferences for state foster care and adoption managers on educational issues. Listen to the audio files and download the handouts

Sessions 6 & 7 -March 4 & 11, 2014  
- Issues of Child Neglect and Abuse

Resources and Readings:

Child Abuse and Neglect: A Fact Sheet
Helping Your Abused and Neglected Child

Please read these resources: 
American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry 
Tips for Parenting the Child Who Has Been Sexually Abused.
Robinson, Ron. 2011 

Mallon & Hess

DePanfilis & Costello



Schlonsky & Gambrill


Signs of Safety Power Point
Implementation of Safety Practice in Child Welfare, Webinar February 22, 2013
Presenters from the Atlantic Coast Child Welfare Implementation Center and West Virginia’s Department of Health and Human Resources/Bureau for Children and Families will discuss how implementation science was used as a framework to successfully implement West Virginia’s Safety Management System (SAMS). 
An overview of implementation science will be provided with emphasis on the implementation drivers – training, coaching and systems intervention. Staff from West Virginia will then provide information about the lessons learned while implementing SAMS.

Implementation  of Safety Practice Model  in Child Welfare,   (Webinar February 22, 2013, PowerPoint Presentation)

Session 8 -March 18, 2014
- Permanency Issues - Reunification 
Resources and Readings:

Visiting Resources From NRCPFC website

Visiting Curriculum 
Introduction to Parent-Child Visits 
Child Welfare Information Gateway and NRCPFC partnered to provide this free, self-guided online training on facilitating visits between parents and children involved with the child welfare system. The training promotes safety, permanency, and well-being of children and families by providing information to help child welfare professionals maintain family connections when children are in out-of-home care, enhance efforts toward family reunification, and improve outcomes for children and families. This training is based on workshops and materials developed by Rose Marie Wentz, NRCPFC Consultant. http://training.childwelfare.gov

Visiting Resources

Videos Demonstrate Caseworker Visits
Nine short videos on the Minnesota Department of Human Services (DHS) website demonstrate best practices for caseworker visits with children and youth in foster care. The videos focus on the changing needs of children at different ages and in different settings. They include:

  • Caseworker Visits: Overview
  • Visits With Infants and Toddlers
  • Visiting Elementary-Age Children
  • Visits With Children Ages 10-12
  • Visiting Youth Placed in Group Homes or Residential Facilities
  • Preparing Foster Children for Visits With Birth Parents
  • Caseworker Visits: Quality Visits
  • Caseworker Visits: Building Stable Placements
  • Caseworker Visits: Supporting Older Youth Transitioning to Independence

To access the videos online, visit the Minnesota DHS website (scroll down to "Training Videos"):

Please watch this webcast:

Session 9 -March 25, 2014
- Permanency:  Guardianship & Kinship Care
Resources and Readings:

Required Reading:

CWLA Conference on Kinship in New Orleans, LA, September 17-19, 2014https://netforum.avectra.com/eweb/DynamicPage.aspx?Site=cwla&WebCode=Kinship14

Please listen to this NRCPFC teleconference on Guardianship Issues:
Permanency through Guardianship: Formulas for Successful Programs

Look at these power points:

Kinship Care:

NRCPFC Fostering Connections Kinship/Guardianship Webpage
NRCPFC maintains a website section on the Fostering Connections to Success and Increasing Adoptions Act of 2008, including this webpage on Kinship/Guardianship. This webpage contains resources on the Kinship/Guardianship Provisions of the Fostering Connections Act, organized into the following sections: Promising Practices from States and Tribes; T/TA & Web Based Resources from NRCs, Children’s Bureau, T/TA Network; Resources from Collaborating Organizations; Evidence-Based Practice, Research, and Reports.

  • NRCPFC Digital Story: Benvanjae
    Through Benvanjae’s story, we learn about kinship care and adoption from the perspective of a grandmother dealing with the foster care system.
  • “We are Still a Family: Adults Caring for their Kin” and “My Special Family: Kids in the Care of their Kin” 
    In October 2003, an Improving Child Welfare Outcomes Through Systems of Care grant through the Children’s Bureau was awarded to Clark County, Nevada as a five-year demonstration project. Clark County Department of Family Services had the goal of using a community-based Systems of Care (SOC) approach to improve the safety, permanency and well-being of children living with kin caregivers. Featured at the Children's Bureau P2P Conference in Washington, DC; this film, made by Clark County, features kinship providers and young people talking about their experiences in kin caregiving. Through their narratives, viewers gain a better understanding of the challenges and rewards involved in kinship caregiving. Utilizing the input provided by these and other caregivers and youth, Clark County was able to develop strategies about how to best work to support families and to address needs of kin as identified in Fostering Connections provisions. As a result, Clark County was able to build peer-staffed supportive programming around kinship care and improve their licensing efficiency for kinship providers. (2010)


  • Child Welfare Information Gateway: Kinship Care Web Section 
    Child Welfare Information Gateway's Kinship Care web section features resources on standards and protocols for managers, service providers, and families to support and promote permanency and positive outcomes. The web section includes the following sections: About kinship care; Impact and evaluation; Resources for managers of kinship care programs; Supporting kinship families; Locating and working with kinship caregivers; and, Achieving and maintaining permanency in kinship care.
NRCPFC Webcast: A Discussion about Kinship/Relative Care Practice
In this webcast, Dr. Gerald P. Mallon, NRCPFC Executive Director, engaged in a conversation with one of the country’s leading experts in kinship/relative care – Dr. Joseph Crumbley. Dr. Crumbley brings decades of experience and expertise in the field of kinship/relative care. He has provided training and consultation nationally and internationally, and has consulted extensively with the Children’s Bureau’s T&TA Network and many other child welfare entities. He has additionally been a guest on the BBC (British Broadcasting Corporation), PBS, Geraldo, Montel Williams Show, and Nickelodeon, and consulted with 60 Minutes, The New York Times, and The Oprah Winfrey Show on the topics of transracial adoption and kinship care. This webcast, now archived on the NRCPFC website, features an informative and lively discussion about kinship care, relative placement, and transracial adoption. (May 2009)

Session 10  - April 1, 2014  
- Adoption Issues

Resources and Readings:
Please read these resources:
Understanding the Hague Convention of Intercountry Adoption

The Hague Adoption Convention on the Protection of Children and Co-operation in Respect of Inter-Country Adoption (Hague Adoption Convention) is an international agreement to safeguard intercountry adoptions. Concluded on May 29, 1993 in The Hague, the Netherlands, the Convention establishes international standards of practices for intercountry adoptions. The United States signed the Convention in 1994, and the Convention entered into force for the United States in April 2008. Read the full text of the Hague Adoption Convention.

Great Books on Adoption Constellation Issues

Session 11 -April 8, 2014  
-The Array of Residential Programs 
Resources and Readings:
  • Improving Residential Care for Children and Youth in Out-of-Home Care
    This NRCPFC document collects available guidelines, models, research, articles, and state and local examples that deal with improving residential care for children and youth in the foster care system.
  • Licensing Standards for Residential Placement Facilities
    We have collected links to state licensing standards for residential placement facilities in this document.
  • Institutions vs. Foster Homes: The Empirical Base for a Century of Action
    This report from the Jordan Institute for Families, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill finds that institutional care is not an essential component of the child welfare system for the majority of children. The review considers four outcome measures for children in institutional care, including child abuse and neglect rates, reunification, success of young adults leaving care, and financial costs of care.
  • Practicing Restraint
    This article from the Child Welfare League of America's "Children's Voice" discusses the use of restraint and seclusion in residential group homes.
  • Residential Group Care Quarterly
    This Child Welfare League of America publication is available online. Sign up to receive e-mail alerts when the newest issue of Residential Group Care Quarterly is available.
  • Update: Latest Findings in Children's Mental Health, Vol. 2, No. 1
    According to findings of a 1997 survey, conducted by the U.S. Center for Mental Health Services (CMHS), many teenagers with severe and complex emotional disturbances are found in residential care programs rather than psychiatric hospitals. Often, these are "system kids" who are shuttled in and out of temporary placements in various child-serving agencies. This publication is the result of a collaboration among Rutgers University, the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and the Annie E. Casey Foundation.
  • Residential Transitions Project: Phase One Final Report
    This report from the Child Welfare League of America was undertaken to inform the development of a model for residential group care that reflects current research findings and the appropriate place of residential group services in the child welfare service continuum. The report includes: a review of data on the utilization of residential group placements in child welfare; a review of the literature on residential group care; a survey of state child welfare agencies; a survey of state child and family services provider associations; and asurvey of California DSS, Children, Youth, & Families county offices


  • Restraint and Seclusion
    This NRCPFC teleconference for state foster care and adoption managers provides an overview of legislation impacting restraint and seclusion, promising practices that successfully reduce the use of these techniques and a movement from use of restraint to trauma-informed care.


NRCPFC Information Packet



Please watch Removed: http://fstoppers.com/removed-an-incredible-film-by-nathanael-matanick

Story and Lesson of the Month


Sessions 12 & 13 - April 29 and May 6, 2014 
– Family Foster Care and Youth Permanency 

Resources and Readings:


Teleconferences/Webcasts on Youth Permanency

  • A Discussion About Permanency for Older Adolescents 
    Effective models that empower and support youth in achieving permanency must be multidimensional. Such models include recruiting and training appropriate foster and adoptive families, many of whom were previously known by the young person prior to their adoption. Effective strategies also include connecting youth to caring adults; mentoring and building connections with extended family; and strategies to effectively address the emotional/mental health issues of youth, including grief and loss. Strategies can also include community connections, family search and engagement, family connections, and caseworker and supervisor support in assessing and supporting a range of permanency options early and often in their work with youth. In this webcast, NRCPFC Executive Director, Gerald P. Mallon, and Pat O'Brien, Founder & Executive Director of You Gotta Believe! The Older Child Adoption & Permanency Movement, discuss strategies for achieving permanency with older adolescents. (March 2010) 

  • Parenting Older Adolescents 
    In this webcast, Dr. Gerald Mallon, Executive Director of the National Resource Center for Permanency and Family Connections, spoke with Mary Keane, a foster and adoptive parent in New York State, as well as Aileen, one of Mary’s daughters.  Mary shared her experiences as a lesbian resource parent, focusing on how she has engaged older adolescents, including how she has effectively supported youth in pursuing their educational goals.  Mary also discussed how she has met the needs of LGBT youth in her care.  Aileen shared her experiences in care, focusing on the type of support that has been important to her and helped her to form a positive relationship with her foster mother and siblings. (September 2011)
  • Unpacking the No of Permanency for Older Youth
    Facilitating permanency for youth in foster care can be very challenging work.  Many teens that have been in the child welfare system have experienced multiple placements and relationships and are at a challenging crossroad between childhood and adulthood.  Adults who work with youth have an ethical and moral responsibility to help them identify caring, committed adults with whom they might want to establish a lifelong connection.  The practice and professional literature speaks to the importance of permanence for youth and how continued instability increases the long-term risks for teens, which may continue well into adulthood.  The best Independent Living programs in the world (and there are many good ones) cannot provide the same solace that a family can give to a young person.  In this webcast, Dr. Gerald Mallon, NRCPFC Executive Director, discussed the concept of permanency for older youth.  He discussed APPLA and explored various permanency options – reunification, guardianship, relative care, and adoption.  He provided guidance on the process of exploring adoption with adolescents, considering factors that may cause adolescents to initially reject the idea of being adopted, and providing suggestions for what workers can say instead of accepting their “No.”  Dr. Mallon also discussed resources and Technical Assistance on this topic available through NRCPFC. Dr. Mallon’s daughter, Leslie Fuller, shared her experience of growing up in foster care and being adopted as an adult, and offered her perspective on the topic. (December 2012)


This chapter provides an overview on Youth Permanency. It is a chapter in a book edited by G.P. Mallon and P. Hess titled, Child Welfare for the Twenty-First Century: Policies, Practices, and Programs, published by Columbia University Press, 2014.
Unpacking the No of Permanency for Youth: Overuse and Misuse of APPLA

Digital Stories:

Digital Story telling is the practice of using computer-based tools to tell stories. As with traditional storytelling, most digital stories focus on a specific topic in this case on stories about children, youth, and families affected by the child welfare system and contain a particular point of view. 

As the name implies, digital stories usually contain some mixture of computer-based images, text, recorded audio narration, video clips and/or music. Digital stories can vary in length, but most of the stories used in the NRCPFC series typically last between two and four minutes.

The topics that are used in Digital Storytelling generally range from personal stories to the recounting of historical events, from exploring life in one's own community to the search for a better future, and literally everything in between. A great way to begin experiencing Digital Storytelling is by watching the stories here. 

 Child Welfare Resources: News, Gateway, and Products
Child Welfare Evaluation Virtual Summit Series Logo

Two Videos Added to the Child Welfare Evaluation Virtual Summit Series
In continuation of the Child Welfare Evaluation Virtual Summit Series, the Children's Bureau is pleased to announce the release of two new videos.

ACS March 2014 newsletter

NY: De Blasio's child welfare reforms falling flat, officials say
DNAinfo.com - March 27, 2014
A key component of the mayor's child-safety reforms - implemented in January in the wake of 4-year-old Myls Dobson's death - has been stymied by child welfare workers who don't file required paperwork and often fail to show up for court hearings, officials said. http://www.dnainfo.com/new-york/20140327/midtown/de-blasios-child-welfare-reforms-falling-flat-officials-say

President's New Budget

Child Well-being: A Framework for Policy and Practice

Conversation on Foster Care with Cris Beam

Wednesday, February 5, 2014 @ 6pm to 8pm

Lord Memorial Building, 145 East 45th St. NYC
Fourth Floor Boardroom.


You Gotta Believe! and the Children’s Aid Society presents a special conversation on foster care with Cris Beam, author of To The End Of June: The Intimate Life of Foster Care. In addition to a reading and discussion with Cris, YGB’s own Mary Keane will moderate a panel discussion with teens, foster parents and staff.