Improving outcomes for children in out-of-home care

In an expanded trial of the Quality Assurance Framework for Out-of-Home Care, the Parenting Research Centre is helping three Family and Community Services offices on the Mid-North Coast of New South Wales to trial the framework.

The approach focuses on using valid and reliable data to inform case planning and the provision of services to children and young people.

We are conducting the trial for the New South Wales Department of Family and Community Services with their services in Kempsey, Coffs Harbour and Port Macquarie. This work builds on the initial trial we began in September 2016 with Burrun Dalai Aboriginal Corporation, Mackillop Family Services and Key Assets Fostering.

The expanded trial includes tracking and monitoring case planning in order to enhance the wellbeing of children and young people in statutory out-of-home care. Identifying the impact of the framework on systems, processes and procedures will help the department implement the framework on a wider scale.

Information will be held centrally, via a Child Overview, giving caseworkers a more comprehensive picture of what is happening in a child’s life. This data will help guide practice and better identify specific areas of need. And it will provide a valid and reliable measure of outcomes for children and young people in statutory out-of-home care.