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How our legislative & public policy leadership is inspiring positive change in the child welfare system. Below you will find all of the latest Capitol Beat stories – to browse other categories, return to The CASA Voice home page or use the navigation list in the right column.

Be sure to keep informed of the latest state and national child welfare news coverage on the News Clips of Interest page!

Texas CASA Releases Guide to Community Based-Care

Texas CASA is proud to release Transforming Together: A Guide to Community-Based Care in Texas, Edition 1. Community-Based Care (CBC) is a sweeping systems change and a new way of providing foster care and case management services in Texas. The change shifts key functions of the child welfare system from the state to private, nonprofit… Read more »

DFPS Releases Implementation Plan for Community-Based Care

As required by statute, the Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) has released the Implementation Plan for the Texas Community-Based Care System. Community-Based Care (CBC) is a new model of providing foster care and other related services that is rolling out geographically and in stages of service over time in Texas. The Implementation Plan is an… Read more »

Report Shows 2017-2018 Suspension Trends for Pre-K Through 2nd Grade

Texans Care for Children has released a report on Texas school districts’ issued suspensions to pre-k through second grade students for the 2017-2018 school year. The study provides context for how House Bill 674 (which largely prohibits out-of-school suspensions in this age range) has worked in its first year since being passed. READ THE REPORT While the… Read more »

Family First Prevention Services Act & Community-Based Care Webinars

Texas CASA’s Senior Public Policy Associate Sarah Crockett, joined by former DFPS Commissioner Anne Heiligenstein of Casey Family Programs, hosted a webinar about the new Family First Prevention Services Act and what it means for Texas’ foster care system. The webinar covers what changes to expect and how this legislation aims to keep more families… Read more »

Federal Appeals Court Overturns Ruling Against Indian Child Welfare Act

A three judge panel of the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals in New Orleans overturned a lower court ruling that declared the Indian Child Welfare Act (ICWA) unconstitutional. ICWA is a 1978 federal law that established a preference for Native American children to remain with their families or other recognized members of their tribe. The original ruling by a federal… Read more »

DFPS Releases Foster Care Needs Assessment & Rider 21 Report

The Department of Family and Protective Services (DFPS) has released the required Foster Care Needs Assessment and the “Rider 21” annual performance evaluation on Community-Based Care (CBC). Learn more about each report below. Foster Care Needs Assessment The Foster Care Needs Assessment is released each year in accordance with state law. DFPS data is extrapolated… Read more »

86th Legislative Session Recap Webinar Now Available

Texas CASA and the local CASA programs worked hard over the course of the 86th Legislative Session to pass some important legislation aimed at improving the lives of children and youth in the child welfare system. You can learn all about the major outcomes of the session in our recently recorded post session webinar. Topics… Read more »

5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals Rules on Texas Foster Care System Lawsuit

A federal appeals court ruled on the long-running Texas foster care system lawsuit on Monday, July 8, 2019. The 5th Circuit Court of Appeals overturned certain mandated fixes to the Texas foster care system, including an overhaul to the way the state tracks and records information about foster care children. The court upheld, however, other requirements, including… Read more »

Texas First Lady Hosts Tea with CASA Executive Directors

On June 25, 2019, CASA Executive Directors from programs all across the state got the opportunity to attend tea with Texas First Lady Cecilia Abbott. The First Lady arranged the event in the effort to gain a better understanding of CASA’s role within the foster care system, as well as the relationship CASA has within… Read more »