National Study of Child Protective Services Systems and Reform Efforts: Site Visits Report . Accountability

05/01/2003

In concert with the trend towards improving family relations with the CPS agency and extending CPS into the community, there was some evidence of increased attention to accountability. The increased attention to performance by local, State, and Federal agencies contributed to this trend.

Florida has instituted numerous reporting and practice requirements through legislation, which was designed to increase accountability. In addition, the Department of Children and Families tested a computerized case record system, which included case-level information for all reports of maltreatment. In Union County, Florida, caseworkers and supervisors could review the status of any case in the system. The system also allowed documentation of actions taken by other service providers who would be held accountable if they did not provide needed services in a timely manner.

California implemented its Statewide Automated Child Welfare Information System within the past 3 years. The Ventura County, California, agency, through its collaborative with the county’s Information Technology (IT) department, prepared monthly management performance reports and responded to the needs of management for other data. These reports have become a part of the monitoring process the County uses to monitor specific performance goals, such as reducing the numbers of reports that are screened out.

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