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.