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Vol. 19, No. 1
December 2013

Making Quality Assessments in Child Welfare

In child welfare work assessments are essential. They are what we use to make judgments and decisions about what should happen next in our work with families. That’s why the quality of assessments matters so much.

Thorough assessments of different kinds conducted by child welfare professionals, mental health providers, and others help us ensure the interventions we provide are both helpful and necessary. This can lead to parents getting what they need to successfully care for their kids. Accurately reflected in our documentation, assessments can influence what gets decided in court.

Good assessments can be a pathway to the outcomes we seek—strong families, healthy children, safe communities.

For this reason, practitioners have a natural interest in making their assessment skills and processes as good as they can be. This issue of Practice Notes seeks to support this effort by reflecting on system- and agency-led efforts to strengthen assessments, the process of assessing prospective adoptive families, and the relationship between effective assessment and family engagement.

We hope it will be helpful to you in your quest to continually improve outcomes for families and children.

Contents of this Issue

Click here to read or print the entire issue as a pdf file

A Framework for Thinking about Assessment in Child Welfare

Data Snapshot: CPS Assessments in North Carolina

To Strengthen Assessments, Enhance Engagement

NC's System-Level Efforts to Strengthen Assessments

Catawba County DSS Turns to "Signs of Safety" to Strengthen Assessments

Assessing Families for Permanency: Guidance from Research

Recent Changes in NC Law Related to Adoption by Foster Parents

Specialized Assessments Commonly Used in NC Child Welfare Practice

References for this Issue

~ Family and Children's Resource Program ~