This memo contains instructions for the local assessment process counties will conduct for their child welfare programs in spring 2001. The assessment process is a comprehensive analysis of local child welfare program operations and program outcomes by county child welfare agencies with broad participation by community stakeholders. The outcomes to be analyzed include key aspects of child safety, permanence and child and family well-being.
The following materials are included with this memo:
County data profiles with information on safety, permanency, out-of-home care and other information will be mailed separately to county directors for use with the assessment process. Data worksheets with the outcome information contained in the data profiles will be made available to county staff upon request.
Counties should begin the assessment process by establishing their local leadership teams and designating a lead child welfare agency staff person to manage the process, including planning the community discussions and oversee completion of the assessment response. Counties should also identify any issues of local interest they want to address in the assessment process. Child welfare agency staff should begin to analyze the outcome data, start work on the agency overview and targeted questions, and prepare for the community discussions. Assessment responses are due to the Department by June 29, 2001.
A series of regional meetings will be held by Department staff in late March to explain the assessment process. Key agency staff and other interested individuals should attend these meetings to receive further instruction on the process. Department staff will also be available during the assessment process period to provide technical assistance to counties as they conduct their assessments.