The National Center for State Courts (NCSC) released its inaugural Permanency Report. The report reveals state-by-state data on key foster care and permanency measures and the examples of strategies being implemented through the Reimagining Dependency Courts project, an effort supported by Case Family Programs. The project focuses on reducing court delay in achieving permanency for children and their families.
Providing judicial leaders with children and family and outcome data, in addition to the court process measures courts are used to seeing, has been a very powerful driver of change at the statewide leadership level and among local trial court judges.
Some of the measures found in the Permanency Report include the percentage of children in foster care who have been in care for more than 24 months and the percentage of foster children in the state who are waiting for adoption. The eight-page report utilizes data from Adoption and Foster Care Analysis and Reporting System (AFCARS) with measures provided by the National Data Archive on Child Abuse and Neglect and the Children’s Bureau CFSR State Performance Workbook. While the report acknowledges that this is not the only or exhaustive way of evaluating permanency and progress, it identifies solid benchmarks for consideration.