Statement from OKDHS -- The Oklahoma Department of Human Services appreciates the Co-Neutrals’ recognition of the progress our agency has made during the first year of implementing the Pinnacle Plan. This includes the reorganization of Child Welfare Services to achieve sustained progress, greater accountability and transparency, as well as more effective and efficient communication and performance. The new management team assembled within Child Welfare Services ensures new and current workers will have the necessary leadership and supervisory guidance to carry out their child welfare responsibilities.
“[T]he Co-Neutrals will judge good faith from the activities and decisions of the state, and not just its intention to do better or improve,” and “will not draw any conclusions with regard to DHS’ good faith efforts until their next report to be released in the first half of 2014.” -- From the Co-Neutral Commentary
The seven performance categories measured:
- Maltreatment (abuse and neglect) of children in the state’s legal custody;
- Development of foster homes and therapeutic treatment foster homes (TFCs);
- Regular and consistent visitation of caseworkers with children in the state’s legal custody;
- Reduction in the number of children in shelters;
- Placement stability, reducing the number of moves a child experiences while in the state’s legal custody;
- Child permanency, primarily through reunification, adoption or permanent guardianship; and,
- Manageable caseloads for child welfare staff.