The Nebraska Foster Care Review Office Report on the State Ward Permanency Pilot. Submitted Pursuant to LB905 (2014). January 28, 2016.
Nebraska Foster Care Review Office.
State Resource Technical Report
Published: January 2016
This report shares findings from the Nebraska Foster Care Review Office’s (FCRO) analysis of the State Ward Permanency Pilot, a project that serves State wards who are eligible for services through the Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) Division of Developmental Disabilities, but do not qualify for priority funding under the Developmental Disabilities Service Act. State wards receiving an enhanced level of care or otherwise assessed to have above-average habilitative needs are to be given priority to participate in the Pilot. To complete the evaluation, the FRCO discussed each individual case with the child welfare case managers and superiors and all process and systemic issues that have occurred since the Pilot began in July 2014. Findings indicate: as of November 30, 2015, there were 43 children referred to the Pilot and 40 children actively participated in the pilot; there were 13 State wards that achieved permanency by having developmental disability (DD) eligibility put into place and their State ward status ended by the courts; and 24 youth did not experience a placement change since entering the pilot program. Process and systemic issues that need further review are discussed, key systemic issues are highlighted, and recommendations are made. Recommendations include: ensuring a child with potential developmental delays is screened by DHHS/CFS and DHHS/DD for eligibility promptly and that appropriate services prioritized; increasing communication across silos within Department of Health and Human Services; and determining how there could be a meaningful appeals process if DD services are denied and then work to build such a process.
foster children; child placement; permanency; child welfare reform; promising practices; developmental disabilities; children with disabilities; demonstration programs; Nebraska