Weekly Update: February 1, 2021
Association News
UPP campus coordinators meet
Coordinators at the eight universities that are part of the University Partnership Program met Jan. 26. State coordinator Tracy Pritchard led the group through a number of updates, including an introduction to the new training manager, Ohio's University Consortium for Child and Adult Services. UPP will continue to focus on course consistency, program evaluation and field placement supports.

Ohio Reach Coalition offers FAFSA, scholarship supports
The Ohio Reach Coalition met Jan. 27. Ohio Reach works with postsecondary schools to provide supports to former foster youth. Coalition manager Tina Jacob provided an overview of foster youth and alum benefits in the latest federal COVID stimulus law. Monthly workshops on completing the federal financial aid application are being offered in partnership with the Family & Youth Law Center. Scholarship information was distributed to coalition members, and the AmeriCorps mentoring program launched this month. Learn more at ohioreach.org.

HB 8 workgroup meets
ODJFS convened the first meeting of a workgroup examining foster caregiver preservice training needs now following the removal of training hours from law in last session's House Bill 8. The group of stakeholders discussed recommendations from the 2018 Foster Care Advisory Group, reduced training hour requirements instituted until this group makes its final recommendations this spring, and implications for traditional and therapeutic caregivers.

PCSAO welcomes new MSW intern

Legislative Committee meets
The PCSAO Legislative Committee met on Jan. 25. PCSAO provided an overview of children services-related bills that passed in the 133rd General Assembly. The committee discussed several emerging policy issues and the new Kinship Support Program. The committee next meets on Feb. 22. 

Northeast, southeast districts hold first meetings of 2021
The PCSAO Northeast District met on Jan. 25. Presentations included Roger Ward from ODJFS on best practices and tools related to Family Team Meetings and Sharla O'Keeffe with Northwoods updates. The district received updates from PCSAO and all counties attending. The district will meet next on April 26. The PCSAO Southeast District also met on Jan. 25. Presentations included Roger Ward from ODJFS on the Family Team Meetings best practices and Christine Dobrovich and Denielle Ell-Rittinger on the Rapid Response Team, the onboarding RFP, the assessor RFP, the Kinship Support Program, Family First updates, and HB 8 procedural letter. The district also received updates from PCSAO, and counties spent time discussing county jurisdiction issues. The Southeast District meets next on April 26. 

PfOF Advisory Board meets
The ODJFS Partners for Ohio’s Families Advisory Board met on Jan. 27. The board is co-chaired by Kara Wente, ODJFS, and Don Warner, Oesterlen Services for Youth. PCSA participation on this board includes Fred Lord of Williams County JFS. Heather O’Keefe of Fairfield County JFS, Kathy Oliver of Seneca County JFS, Tim Schaffner of Trumbull County CSB. Chip Spinning of Franklin County CSB, Sue Ware of Union County JFS and Angela Sausser of PCSAO. The purpose of the advisory board was reset at this meeting. It will now become a sounding board for the Office of Families and Children’s efforts, initiatives, and recommendations. ODJFS staff shared updates related to prevention services, QRTP readiness, Kinship Support Program, HB 8 foster caregiver training implementation, tiered treatment foster care, SFY22-23 budget updates, and two recommendations from the Office of Children Services Transformation. The board will meet next on April 15. 
Ohio START seeks second regional manager
Ohio START is seeking a second regional manager to assist with the management and implementation of the Ohio START program. Applications are due Feb. 15. Read more.
State and Federal Updates
State updates
Gov. Mike DeWine made the following announcements about COVID-19 efforts:
  • The start time for Ohio’s curfew is 11 p.m. from Jan. 28 through Feb. 11. The change was made because Ohio hospitalizations for COVID-19 have remained below 3,500 for seven consecutive days. Individuals within the state must stay at a place of residence during the hours of 11 p.m. and 5 a.m. except for obtaining necessary food, medical care, or social services or providing care for others. 
  • Every public school district in the state -- except for one -- has agreed to resume in-person schooling by March 1, which was a requirement for staff to have early access to the vaccine. The schedule for school staff vaccination can be found here under "COVID-19 Vaccination: Phase 1B (K-12 Schools)."
  • Gov. DeWine announced that Ohio will be delivering vaccines directly to affordable senior housing locations starting the week of Feb. 8. The Ohio Department of Health will be working with local partners to offer assistance through onsite clinics.
FSHO becomes law
A huge round of congratulations to the former foster youth who worked to make the Fostering Stable Housing Opportunities(FSHO) Act a reality. The act requires federal agencies to set aside housing vouchers for foster youth who age out of the system so that they no longer face homelessness. Former foster youth Cloé Cooper and Jonathan Thomas (lower left) spoke at a press conference with Congressman Mike Turner last week.
Rules Update
Pre-Clearance: The following rules are open for comments until Feb. 9:
The following rules are open for comments until Feb. 10:
  • Rule 5101:2-47-01 - Administration of the Title IV-E foster care maintenance FCM program.
  • Rule 5101:2-47-09 - Case record requirements for Title IV-E foster care maintenance (FCM).
  • Rule 5101:2-47-12 - Title IV-E foster care maintenance (FCM): Initial determination of program eligibility and reimbursability.
  • Rule 5101:2-47-13 - Title IV-E foster care maintenance (FCM): Legal responsibility requirements.
  • Rule 5101:2-47-14 - Title IV-E foster care maintenance (FCM): ADC-relatedness.
  • Rule 5101:2-47-15 - Foster care maintenance program reimbursability: authorization for foster care maintenance and auxiliary payment reimbursement.
  • Rule 5101:2-47-16 - Title IV-E foster care maintenance (FCM) program: Reimbursable placement settings.
  • Rule 5101:2-47-19 - Title IV-E foster care maintenance (FCM) program reimbursability: payments, reimbursements, graduation expenses and personal incidentals.
  • Rule 5101:2-47-20 - Title IV-E foster care maintenance (FCM) program: Supplemental reimbursements for the cost of care for the child of a Title IV-E recipient parent.
  • Rule 5101:2-47-21 - Title IV-E Foster Care Maintenance (FCM) reimbursement for a child places into a Qualified Residential Treatment Program (QRTP).
  • Rule 5101:2-47-23 - Beginning date of reimbursability for the Title IV-E foster care maintenance (FCM).
The following rules are open for comment until Feb. 11:
  • Rule 5101:2-38-01 - Requirements for PCSA case plan for in-home supportive services without court order.
  • Rule 5101:2-38-04 - PCPA requirements for completing the semiannual administrative review.
  • Rule 5101:2-38-05 – PCSA case plan for children in custody or under protective supervision.
  • Rule 5101:2-38-07 - PCPA case plan for children in custody or under court-ordered protective supervision.
  • Rule 5101:2-38-09 - PCSA requirements for completing the case review.
  • Rule 5101:2-38-10 - PCSA requirements for completing the semiannual administrative review.
  • Rule 5101:2-39-01 - Removal of a child from the child’s own home.

Clearance: As of Jan. 30, there are no children services-related rules in Clearance.
Filed with JCARR: The following rule was final-filed on Jan. 22 with an effective date of Feb. 1:
Resources and Clips
Facebook discussion on suicide prevention Feb. 2
The Ohio Council of Behavioral Health & Family Services Providers is hosting a live Facebook discussion about suicide prevention, mental health, and support for families affected by suicide on Feb. 2 from 5-6 p.m. This is a free event, and no registration is required. The panel will be streamed live at https://www.facebook.com/sparkmediafilm.

Ohio Prevention Conference 2021 Virtual Training Series
The 2021 Ohio Prevention Conference will transition to a Virtual Training Series offered throughout the spring and summer. It is currently seeking training proposals that focus on innovations in prevention, suicide prevention, restorative justice, community change efforts, social determinants of health, behavioral health equity, transformational leadership, and student wellness in K-12 and college settings. Click here for more information.
Child Protection in the News
Rep. Mike Turner celebrated the Fostering Stable Housing Opportunities Act (FSHO) becoming a law during a press conference Wednesday. Turner introduced the idea in 2015. The goal of FSHO was to help minors aging out of foster care and at high risk for homelessness to transition into successful opportunities to help them with their future as adults.
A new law that aims to help children in foster care systems across the country that “age out” of the system received praise Wednesday from county officials and the lawmaker who sought its passage.
A coalition of groups from the children services, economic stability and education equity fields have come together to push budget priorities that focus on the youngest Ohioans. The Ohio Children's Budget Coalition released multiple policy briefs outlining the major needs they see within the state to support children and sent a letter to the governor calling on him to commit to further investment.
Jan. 24 – Hundreds of children live with grandparents who may be struggling – Zanesville Times Recorder
Faced with an opportunity to take in two of her grandchildren years back, Frieda Hardy of Zanesville didn't think twice about becoming a kinship caregiver. It is a similar concept to foster parenting but provides very little financial aid. There are some non-governmental entities that aim to compensate for what little funds kinship caregiver are provided from the state, but it's nominal to what a certified foster parent receives. Just before the end of the year, Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine signed an executive order that will guarantee direct payments to non-foster parent families who take in children under children's services supervision beginning June 1.
Advocates for Ohio children cared for by adult relatives say a state plan to address funding disparities for those children is illegal and inadequate. At issue are people who take custody of children they're related to but who aren't licensed foster parents. A long-time gap exists in Ohio between payments to non-licensed relatives and to licensed foster care parents, who typically receive much higher amounts.
Calendar and Job Postings
Fab. 3 | Board of Trustees Meeting
Feb. 4 | Rules Review Committee Meeting
Feb. 5 | Community Education Committee Meeting
Feb. 12 | Conference Planning Committee Meeting

Note: Meetings will be held via web meeting for the foreseeable future.

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