Illinois Foster Care Council discusses quality-of-care concerns
At a recent meeting, the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services' Foster Care Advisory Council discussed foster-home quality-of-care concerns.
The Illinois Department of Children and Family Services acts in the best interest of every child it serves by helping families provide a safe environment for their children and strengthen families at risk of abuse or neglect.
Below are the minutes from this meeting, as provided by the department.
Statewide Foster Care Advisory Council
April 22, 2016 Conference Call
9:00 – 11:00 a.m.
SWFCAC Members Present
Hope Carbonaro, Donna Gregory, Gordon Hannon, Stephanie Jones, Kurt Kalas, Cathy McCoy, Mark McDaniel, Kellye Norris, Sarah Olson, Carol Sheley, Mike Simpson
SWFCAC Members Absent
Pauline Barlow, Gladys Boyd, Charlene Burris, Edith Cruz, Irma Dixon, Cheryl Dreska, Kelly Fargher, Rachel Hoyt, Ken Keefe, Pamela Webb
DCFS Staff Present
Alissandra Calderon, Debra Dyer-Webster, Gwenn Eyer, Darrin Holt, Courtney Field, Shelley Glasgow, Theresa Hughes, Kelly Fargher, Vanessa James, Fae Jones, Jennifer Kitzmiller, Terry McGlothlin, Susana Olivas, Veronica Resa, Elizabeth Richmond, Bill Siverly
Welcome & Introductions – Sarah Olson, Chair, called the meeting to order at 9:07 a.m. Due to a scheduling mix-up, a second meeting was convened at 10:00 a.m. where additional council members and staff discussed the content of the first meeting.
Final SWFCAC Reports to Director – Sarah Olson There were no final reports to the Director. The monthly report to the Director from the SWFCAC Chair was emailed to SWFCAC members.
Approval of Minutes from March 18, 2015 SWFCAC Meeting Mike Simpson made the motion to approve the minutes of the March 18, 2015 SWFCAC meeting. Kellye Norris seconded. The minutes were approved as written.
Status of Agency Reviews - Gwenn Eyer The Agency Reviews have all been scheduled and a couple have been rescheduled, due to illness. Gwenn expressed her thanks to those who stepped up when it was hard to fill reviewer positions. She also thanked those who did the foster parent surveys. She requested that all completed materials be submitted as soon as possible.
Sarah noted that we will soon be looking for new members to fulfil expiring terms and we will be looking to council members for recommendations. She reminded the council that the job description includes scoring implementation plans, conducting agency reviews, etc.
Annual Partnering With Parents Summit – May 6 - Terry McGlothlin
The Council will meet at 9:00 a.m. to cover SWFCAC business prior to the Summit. Council members will then join the Summit at 10:00 for a keynote speaker and a café style presentation, with lunch to follow. After lunch we’ll meet again as a council until 3pm. The Summit will be held at the Northfield Center on May 6th. Debra Dyer-Webster will represent the Director at the Summit.
PRIDE Training Update - Sharva Hampton-Campbell Sharva was not on the call due to illness. Terry asked her for a report and Sharva told her that they’re still working on the PRIDE revisions, but there is no solid roll-out date. They’re also working on training for the Emergency Foster Care program, to be piloted in late May/ early June. They are looking for 20 homes in Cook and 10 in each downstate region to become Emergency Foster Homes. Roll-out is anticipated for July 1. Jataun Rollins is the lead on this program. These are supposed to be short-term placements to give them time to better match children and families for longer term placements. The emergency foster parent will be salaried, with one vacation day awarded every two weeks. The current salary estimate is $15,695/year. It needs to be a two-parent home as one must be a full-time parent. The daily rate will be $54/day. There will be a maximum of two slots in the home, with no other foster care openings. Foster parents may not state a preference of boys or girls. There will be a No Decline policy. Foster parents may have birth and adopted children in the home, but no non-emergency foster care openings. The initial placement is for two weeks, and they may receive a waiver to extend seven days. A 2nd waiver to extend 7 days may be given, not to exceed 30 days. Hope referenced CWAC’s work with regard to this program and private agencies, noting that they will utilize both DCFS and POS homes in this program.
*Adolescent Issues - Mike Simpson
*Policy & Legislative - Cathy McCoy / Darrin Holt
Darrin reported on legislation:
HB6233 – Criminal Bars to Licensure –the criminal bars to licensure should line up with criminal bars with placement.
HB4966 – Defines Quality of Care Concerns in a Foster Home – Committee will be taking a closer look at this one and reporting in May. You may go to www.ilga.gov to look up bills online.
Policy: Cathy reported that we submitted our comments and recommendations for 402. We have not yet gathered recommendations for 383, but will work on it next. Darren expressed his thanks to everyone who worked diligently last month to review and get the Council’s changes to 402 submitted.
*FPSS - Edith Cruz
*Respite - Gladys Boyd
Reports from Other Councils/Committees/Workgroups
CWAC / CWAC Training - Cathy, Pauline, Darrin, Hope Hope reported that CWAC Foster Care met on the 15th and spent much of the time speaking about Emergency Foster Care. She did not provide additional detail, since we’d already discussed it.
IFAPA - Gladys Boyd
Northern - Donna Gregory, Cheri Dreska
Donna reported that the officers met last month for a planning session. They set goals and planned their annual meeting calendar. Their next meeting will be the second Thursday in May in Aurora.
Southern - Michael Simpson, Mark McDaniel
The next Foster Parent Advisory phone call will be at 6pm on Tuesday. They’re working on getting a lot more cafés going along with other training opportunities in the Southern Region.
Central - Carol Sheley, Stephanie Jones, Ken Keefe
Carol reported that they’ve been conducting a lot of cafés. The next council meeting will be May 10th in Jacksonville. They’ve elected officers and are putting together a more regular schedule. Throughout the region, councils have discussed the Prudent Parenting Standards, Lifebooks, Stewardship and Fictive Kin. Elizabeth reported that the various offices in Central Region have their own groups and meet together, providing training. Each group has a foster parent representative, typically a Support Specialist, which meets monthly with leadership.
Cook North - Edith Cruz, Irma Dixon
Cook South - Pamela Webb, Kellye Norris
Cook Central - Charlene Burris, Gordon Hannon
Quality Parenting Initiative - The Southern Region group is meeting this morning. Hope stated that they’ve defined the mission and now are working to define their three objectives.
Vanessa reported on the Twitter Chat planned for Monday, April 25th at 2:00 p.m. DCFS, Prevent Child Abuse-IL and the University of Chicago, School of Medicine will focus on child abuse, including a time for Q&A. #speakforkids
Mike Simpson made a motion to adjourn. Kellye Norris seconded and the meeting adjourned at 9:45a.m.
Next Meetings May 6, 2016 – PWP Summit, Northfield Inn, Northfield Drive, Springfield June 17, 2016 – Sheraton, 3000 Warrenville Road, Lisle