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Inside CASA is Texas CASA’s up-to-date source of training opportunities, best practices, tips, news and announcements, and more to help local CASA program staff and board members in their day-to-day operations and advocacy.

DFPS Commissioner Whitman Issues 10-Point Priority Plan for CPS

New DFPS Commissioner Hank Whitman released a letter to Governor Abbott on July 5 laying out his “10-point plan for CPS.” Highlights include: All 10 CPS regional directors must reapply for their jobs. CPS Transformation will continue. CPS will work with the Texas Department of Public Safety to develop a team of “information analysts” to… Read more »

Texas CASA Testifies at House Human Services Committee Meeting July 12

The House Human Services Committee held a lengthy, interim hearing on a number of important issues related to CPS, foster care and adoption on July 12. Read a news article about the hearing. The interim charge reads: Examine the Department of Family and Protective Services’ policies and procedures, including prevention measures and resources, dedicated to… Read more »

Texas CASA Board Approves Legislative Priorities

The Texas CASA Board of Directors considered and approved our Legislative Priorities for the 2017 legislative session at their Friday, June 24, meeting. Texas CASA staff had been soliciting input on legislative and policy issues since January. The Board Public Policy committee oversaw the development of the draft Legislative Priorities. In addition, Texas CASA conducted… Read more »

House County Affairs Committee Looking at CPS Problems

The Texas House of Representatives County Affairs Committee, chaired by Houston Representative Garnet Coleman, has begun looking at issues and problems in the child protection system during its interim hearings. Although the committee was not charged with studying this issue by the Speaker, Chairman Coleman is deeply concerned about problems at DFPS. After an initial… Read more »

Survey of CASA Executive Directors on Legislative Issues

Fifty-six CASA program Executive Directors recently responded to a short survey given as part of the process to develop the Texas CASA legislative priorities for the 2017 session. The purpose of the survey was to collect information on a number of issues and problems affecting the child protection system. Although Texas CASA’s Public Policy team has not… Read more »

Update on Federal Lawsuit against CPS

As Texas CASA has previously reported, Judge Janis Jack found elements of Texas’ child protection system unconstitutional in a ruling last December. As a means to provide remedies to address the violations, she appointed two Special Masters earlier this year, and they have begun developing a work plan to identify issues and problems, as well… Read more »

Annie E. Casey Foundation Releases 2016 KIDS COUNT Data Book

The Annie E. Casey Foundation recently released the 2016 KIDS COUNT Data Book where each state is ranked on overall child well-being based on four factors: economic well-being, education, health, and family and community. This year, Texas ranked 43rd overall – a slight drop from 41st in 2015 – showing that we still have a long way… Read more »

CPS Hosting Provider Meetings Across the State

CPS is hosting a series of provider meetings across the state to discuss the placement needs of children in care and to inform capacity-building efforts. CASA programs are encouraged to attend the meeting in their area, especially since placement issues were ranked very high in the legislative and policy issues survey Texas CASA sent out… Read more »

2016 HHS Cross-Systems Summit in San Marcos

The 2016 Cross-Systems Summit, taking place Aug. 16-17 in San Marcos, is a two-day event hosted by the Texas Health and Human Services Commission’s Center for Elimination of Disproportionality and Disparities. This year’s theme is Equity in Texas: Bold Beginnings, Courageous Path, Igniting Our Future. The Summit will highlight the legacy of equity work in… Read more »