February/March 2002Vol. 3, No. 2Free Training and Technical Assistance on Strategic Planning for Courts
The National Child Welfare Resource Center on Legal and Judicial Issues and the National Child Welfare Resource Center for Organizational Improvement are offering free training and technical assistance to States and federally recognized tribes on strategic planning for court systems.
According to Mimi Laver, Assistant Director of Child Welfare for the National Child Welfare Resource Center on Legal and Judicial Issues, the collaborative effort will be beneficial because it combines the respective resource centers' expertise in law and aspect planning.
The training aims to help child welfare programs assess how their courts serve abused and neglected children and their families, focus court improvement efforts, and define specific outcomes so that success can be measured. The training is tailored to suit the needs of individual agencies.
Court improvement directors will work with child welfare programs to develop a vision for the future by establishing or re-evaluating long-term goals and desired outcomes. To attain goals, a determination of who will perform what roles will be made, as well as clarification of budgeting issues and formulation of realistic strategies and timeframes needed to attain goals.
Areas to address include improving judicial competence and skills, developing information systems to track cases and measure performance, encouraging communication and cross-system training, limiting workloads to allow timely and well-informed judicial decisions, and giving fairer treatment and more consideration to all parties before the court.
Mimi Laver, Assistant Director
National Child Welfare Resource Center on Legal and Judicial Issues
Anita St. Onge, Research Associate
National Child Welfare Resource Center for Organizational Improvement