Sean on the 2014 Elections and Child Welfare

"...we can expect continued fights over health care, federal spending, taxes, social programs, and entitlements. The outcome of a number of these battles could significantly impact children and families served by our country’s child welfare system." READ MORE

Fostering Connections Act's Uneven First Five Years

Last October the Fostering Connections to Success and Increasing Adoptions Act (or Fostering Connections, as it is commonly known) turned five years old. As someone who helped write and pass that law, I can’t help but feel a little bittersweet at where things stand five years later. The Act’s considerable promise has been hamstrung by uneven progress in implementation thus far. read more

Taking Advantage of Flexible Funding: Three Ideas for California Counties

Expanding THP-Plus Housing for former foster youth, equitably funding relative placements, and increasing support for pregnant and parenting teens are just three of the ways that counties could invest realignment revenue growth to address persistent needs in their communities. The point is, the flexibility and growth provided by realignment truly empowers counties to innovate and invest to improve outcomes. read more

Realignment Reality: New Resources, New Choices

Each of California’s 58 counties has unique needs, unique constituencies, and unique pressures weighing on its public systems. Opinions are certain to vary widely on priorities for investing growth, or in the wisdom of shifting resources from one use to another. With new choices and new public funds, come new responsibilities. read more

California's Lack of Support for Relative Foster Parents

Only 44 percent of Californian foster children currently qualify for federal foster care benefits due to antiquated eligibility rules, and this rate is declining every year. In most placements, the state picks up the slack when a youth is not federally eligible and provides comparable benefits to those received by youth who are federally eligible.  For youth placed with a relative, however, California is one of the few states in the country that does not provide state-only foster care benefits when the child is not federally eligible, leaving these kinship foster parents without any foster care benefits at all. read more