Sustained Permanency Project launched to prevent children from re-entering foster care

July 28, 2017

Nearly one in five children currently in care was in out-of-home care previously. A significant number of families are fractured and re-fractured when children come in and out of foster care. Stable and nurturing families can bolster the resilience of children and ameliorate negative impacts on their developmental outcomes, which, in time, can ensure these children will grow to be healthy, contributing members of society. These protective factors cannot be nurtured sufficiently with the instability and re-traumatization that accompanies re-entry into foster care.

Last month, Casey Family Programs presented a new Action Plan "Supporting Lifelong Families: Steps Child Welfare Agencies Can Take to Prevent Children from Re-entering Foster Care." This Action Plan provides steps that county agencies can take right now to start to address re-entries. More in-depth information on post permanency can also be found in the accompanying research brief also found on Casey's website.

Sustained Permanency Project

Colorado is ready to take action. Our child welfare system is charged with achieving permanency both timely and without reentry. While Colorado continues to meet the federal goal of achieving permanency within 12 months, we struggle with children/youth reentering out-of-home care after an initial out-of-home care episode.  The federal goal is for less than 8.3% of children/youth to reenter out-of-home care. The table below reflects Colorado’s performance. Beyond meeting the federal goal, we believe that children/youth do best when raised in a stable family setting, and preventing multiple placements increases safety, permanency, and well-being.  To improve our practice, the CDHS Division of Child Welfare is partnering with county departments, Casey Family Programs, National Implementation Research Network (NIRN), and Eckerd to launch the “Sustained Permanency Project.” The objective of this project is to utilize implementation science to develop and implement a practice model to lessen the likelihood of reentry.  The practice model will consist of predictive analytics, a service array, and coaching to improve the success of sustained permanency. 

Report Period

SFY 10/11

SFY 11/12

SFY 12/13

SFY 13/14

SFY 14/15

SFY 15/16

SFY 16/17

% of all children who reentered OOH within 12 months of discharge








Sustained Permanency Project Exploratory Committee

An team of 10-15 individuals from the Colorado child welfare system who have the time, collective expertise, and ability to inform decisions related to the development of a predictive analytics practice model to reduce reentries into out-of-home care is forming.  The Exploration Team Kickoff Meeting will be on Thursday, August 24, 2017 from 8:30 AM – 2:00 PM at Mile High United Way, 711 Park Ave W, Denver, CO 80205. 

The exploration team will strive to have a diversity of perspectives, such as county and state representation, practice and policy experience, and quality assurance, administrative and fiscal representation. Members should include individuals who have experience in developing and using effective supports for, and data for continuous improvement of, effective practices and system change efforts to reduce reentries into foster care. Additional selection criteria for Team members can include strong communication skills, problem-solving skills, and contextual knowledge of child welfare systems. Funding and technical assistance partners will also contribute to Team development and activities. For details on the goals, schedule and activites of the Sustained Permanency Project Exploratory Committee download IM-CW-2017-0031 Sustained Permanency Project 

If you are interest in being part of the exploration team, please complete the attached application and submit it to Megan Rush by Wednesday, August 9, 2017. Those chosen to participate in the exploration team will receive notice by Friday, August 11, 2017. Please contact Paige Rosemond, 720-480-8958, with any questions. 

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