JBS International, Inc.'s Child Welfare Reviews Project assists the Children's Bureau in administering the Child and Family Services Reviews (CFSRs). The project's responsibilities include recruiting and training CFSR Reviewers, QA Specialists, and Note-Taking Specialists (collectively referred to as "agile staff"). This section provides information about the recruitment and training of child welfare professionals to serve as agile staff for the Child and Family Services Reviews (CFSRs) to supplement the Federal Review Team. The same basic qualifications and responsibilities of CFSR Reviewers also apply to Quality Assurance Specialists and Note-Taking Specialists. The latter are selected from the approved CFSR Reviewer pool and require additional training.
The Child Welfare Reviews Project conducts CFSR Reviewer, QA Specialist, and Note-Taking Specialist trainings periodically as needed. Agile staff receive an honorarium for participating in trainings and reviews, reimbursement for travel expenses, and a per diem rate for meals and incidental expenses. If you are interested in serving as a CFSR Reviewer, please carefully review the qualifications and responsibilities at the links above. If you believe you are qualified to participate, please email the Child Welfare Reviews Project at email@example.com for a CFSR Reviewer Application Package.
CFSR Reviewer Recruitment
The Child Welfare Reviews Project oversees a diverse national pool of CFSR Reviewers who participate in the CFSRs conducted by the Children's Bureau. JBS recruits by taking referrals from state or federal staff, contract staff, and current CFSR Reviewers, Quality Assurance Specialists, and Note-Taking Specialists, as well as by conducting outreach to Regional Offices and national organizations. Upon receipt of applications, the Child Welfare Reviews Project reviews and maintains information on candidates' qualifications and identifies candidates to participate in CFSR Reviewer trainings. Once trained, these individuals become eligible to participate as CFSR Reviewers. Preference will be given to individuals who are experienced in applying the Onsite Review Instrument and Instructions (OSRI) and/or who demonstrate fluency in Spanish and/or lived experience within the child welfare system or within indigenous/Tribal social services.
The Child Welfare Reviews Project conducts CFSR Reviewer trainings periodically. Qualified candidates will be required to attend an in-person 2-day training and complete online training and other ongoing trainings as needed.
Agile Staff Qualifications
CFSR Reviewers, Quality Assurance Specialists, and Note-Taking Specialists (agile staff) are child welfare experts with experience in making professional judgments based on information collected from various sources. They apply this knowledge to participate in the CFSRs. Minimum qualifications include:
- Bachelor's or Master's degree in social work, human services, public administration, counseling, or a closely related field; or a Juris Doctor degree with experience working for a state/Tribal Court Improvement Program or juvenile or family court dealing with child welfare/Tribal cases.
- Minimum of 5 years of direct field experience and/or supervisory, administrative, or management experience in a public or private child welfare agency. This may include providing services or supervising, administering, or managing programs supporting child protective services, foster care, adoption, family preservation, family support, independent living services, or licensure/approval of foster and adoptive families with state, local, or Tribal agencies.
- Strong assessment skills, including the ability to: (1) gather information from interviews and written documents; (2) pursue the collection of information from various sources; (3) take notes and compile information obtained from multiple sources; and (4) make professional judgments based on the information collected during the reviews.
- Master's degree in social work, human services, counseling, public administration, or a closely related field; or Juris Doctor degree with experience working for a state Court Improvement Project or juvenile or family court dealing with child welfare cases.
- Supervisory, administrative, and/or management experience in a public (federal, state, or local) or private child welfare agency; or at least 2 years of direct experience working for a state Court Improvement Project or juvenile or family court dealing with child welfare cases.
- Participation in a CFSR on a state team; experience in quality assurance or performance reviews of child welfare services.
Preference will be given to individuals who are experienced in applying the OSRI and/or demonstrate fluency in Spanish and/or lived experience within the child welfare system or within indigenous/Tribal social services.
CFSR Reviewer Responsibilities
Participation in the CFSRs requires a significant commitment of time and effort. The general responsibilities of agile staff participating in the CFSRs are summarized below:
- They must be willing and available to participate in multiple reviews and to review and abide by the provisions of their agreement with JBS and a confidentiality provision. (All CFSR agency-related information reviewed or discussed during a CFSR is confidential.)
- They may not participate in the CFSRs of any state to which they provided child welfare services, technical assistance, or consultation within 1 year before the review. They also may not participate in the CFSR of any state against which they were involved in a lawsuit or other legal action, regardless of the period of the legal action. They may not provide compensated technical assistance to a state during the period following a CFSR in which they participated while the state is developing and implementing a Program Improvement Plan associated with the CFSR findings.
When participating in a CFSR, CFSR Reviewers must:
- In collaboration with a state CFSR review partner, review case records, interview involved parties, and complete the OSRI.
- Use professional judgment to make rating decisions based on CFSR instructions and regulations.
- Participate in group meetings scheduled during the onsite review, as required.
- Attend the final team debriefing and present information on cases reviewed, as required.
- Assist in compiling a summary of the team's findings during the onsite review.
- Remain present at the review site for the entire duration of the onsite review, and participate in all scheduled review activities, from the entrance conference through the exit conference.
- Remain available for telephone consultation after the review, if needed, to clarify or supplement information recorded on the instruments.
A CFSR Reviewer may also be trained to perform as a Note-Taking Specialist or QA Specialist. These roles are generally reserved for experienced reviewers who have demonstrated a strong understanding of the OSRI and its application.
- Note-Taking Specialists take notes regarding relevant information during stakeholder interviews, condense information gathered during interviews, and use this information to complete the CFSR Stakeholder Interview Guide. Work is completed during the onsite review or remotely.
- QA Specialists are experts in the CFSR process and work collaboratively with review teams, including state and federal team members; review completed OSRIs to determine compliance with OSRI instructions; interpret state policy as it relates to the OSRI; and assist the Federal Team Leader in managing the onsite review.