National Center for Child Welfare Excellence

National Center for Child Welfare Excellence
The NCCWE wishes very Happy New Year to all of our subscribers and their families.

NCCWE Weekly Update 1/7/2015

Youth Permanence Curricula
The March 2014 issue of Children's Bureau Express (CBX) spotlighted permanence for youth. A new curricula developed by the National Center for Child Welfare Excellence (NCCWE) is centered on improving outcomes for older youth in out-of-home care. 
The curricula focuses on the belief that all children, regardless of age, deserve and can achieve permanence. The 1-day course includes six modules that outline legislation pertaining to permanence; define youth permanency and help professionals understand the importance of lifelong, permanent connections for youth in care; and highlight four permanency pathways. More information on Making It Possible: Permanency Pathways for Older Youth in Care, in addition to links to the facilitator's guide and participation handouts, is available on the NCCWE website at

The CBX Spotlight on permanence for youth is available at

Factsheet for Caregivers on Complex Trauma
The National Child Traumatic Stress Network published a factsheet for parents and caregivers that defines complex trauma and its signs and symptoms, explains its effects, and provides recommendations for how parents can help their children build resilience and recover. 

The factsheet offers information about traumatic reminders—everyday incidents (sounds, smells, feelings) that cause a child to relive a traumatic event from his or her past. These triggers can cause overreactive behavior, intense anxiety, distraction and lack of focus, and other negative outcomes. Complex trauma can create irrational thinking and inaccurate perceptions related to the child's relationship with a caregiver. Because caregivers can also experience feelings of frustration and helplessness, the factsheet outlines coping strategies and provides information on self-care. Complex Trauma: Facts for Caregivers is available at

Understanding Connections Between Rural Communities and Family Well-Being. A Study of Hampton, Iowa.
Fletcher, Cynthia Needles. University of New Hampshire, Carsey School of Public Policy. 2014

Simulation Labs for Child Welfare Education & Training
When: Wednesday, February 4, 2015, from 3-4:30 pm ET
This webinar will provide an overview of Simulation Labs, an innovative technique being utilized with newly-hired children's services social workers at the Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS) in Los Angeles County, as well as undergraduate and graduate social work students.

Simulation is a technique for education and training that has been used in many different disciplines, including aviation, the military, and medicine. It offers guided, "immersive" experiences that evoke or replicate aspects of the real world professional experience in a fully interactive fashion. LA's model was developed and implemented by a multi-disciplinary workgroup consisting of DCFS training staff, child welfare training faculty from four university schools of social work (Cal State University - Los Angeles; Cal State University - Long Beach; UCLA; USC), law enforcement consultants, County attorneys, and other stakeholders. Initially piloted in August 2013, LA's simulation model is an integral component of the County's new worker Foundation training and education for child welfare students, as it is designed to promote, develop, and reinforce key social work skills - client engagement, critical thinking, assessment skills, interviewing techniques, decision-making, analysis, and problem solving - in a team-focused, supportive setting. Workgroup members will share the strategies involved in creating and implementing this model, including curriculum design, training infrastructure (space, set design, resources) and staffing (facilitators, role-players), as well as lessons learned in designing scenarios to support key learning objectives and competencies, and current efforts to evaluate effectiveness and impact.

Confidentiality Toolkit Guides Cross-System Interoperability
New technologies and data systems have the capability of supporting cross-systems collaboration through improved information sharing among agencies, but only if the needed data are entered into the system. However, concerns about confidentiality requirements can often hinder data collection efforts.

To support efforts to improve the level of interoperability, the Department of Health and Human Services' Administration for Children and Families (ACF) created ACF's Interoperability Initiative. The Initiative has produced a new toolkit to provide guidance to States on improving the level of information sharing in the context of the laws and rules that govern confidentiality in ACF-supported programs. The toolkit specifically addresses how States can effectively share information among agencies that provide services to families while maintaining necessary levels of confidentiality.

For each program, applicable Federal legislation and regulations are described. In addition, the toolkit provides examples of how confidentiality requirements can be addressed and met in a manner fully consistent with governing laws and underlying policies. Sample Memoranda of Understanding and data sharing agreements also are provided.
Confidentiality Toolkit: A Resource Tool From the ACF Interoperability Initiative is available on the ACF website:

Child Welfare Information Gateway Launches Newly Designed Website
Child Welfare Information Gateway launched an enhanced website featuring a cleaner design and interface, streamlined navigation to key content, and more mobile-friendly access. The changes were implemented in response to audience feedback and improve access to resources, publications, and services on child welfare topics from prevention to permanency support and a range of systemic and organizational topics.
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The NCCWE Weekly Update is emailed to all subscribers every Wednesday. We urge subscribers to share this information with colleagues in the field. This service is brought to the child welfare community free of charge by the National Center for Child Welfare Excellence at the Silberman School of Social Work at Hunter College.

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Gerald P. Mallon, DSW, LCSW
Julia Lathrop Professor of Child Welfare
Executive Director
National Center for Child Welfare Excellence
Silberman School of Social Work at Hunter College
A Service of the Children's Bureau
2180 Third Avenue. 7th Floor
New York, NY 10035