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October 2012Vol. 13, No. 9Title IV-B and the New Focus on Young Children

The Congressional Research Service (CRS) published a report in June 2011 that details State funding levels and requirements for child and family services under title IV-B of the Social Security Act. The report was written to aid Congress in its efforts to reauthorize title IV-B funding before it expired at the end of fiscal year (FY) 2011. With some small changes, funding was reauthorized near its current levels by the Child and Family Services Improvement and Innovation Act enacted in September 2011.

The Children's Bureau released an Information Memorandum (IM) in October 2011 to introduce some of the enacted provisions. The IM notes that the reauthorization added two additional title IV-B, subpart 1 requirements. State and Tribal title IV-B agencies must describe activities undertaken to:

  • Reduce the length of time that children under 5 years of age are without a permanent family
  • Address the developmental needs of children under 5 served under titles IV-B and IV-E (section 422(b)(18) of the Act

In April 2012, the Bureau provided a Program Instruction that laid out how these new activities should be reported in States' Annual Progress and Services Report (APSR). APSRs must include the following:

  • The number of children under the age of 5 in foster care projected to be without a permanent family
  • The method of tracking these children and the demographics and characteristics of the identified children
  • The targeted services provided to these children to find a permanent family and how they address the developmental needs of infants, toddlers, and children
  • The approach that has been developed for working with this group of infants, toddlers, and children (e.g., priorities for safety assessments, service delivery for reunification, and standards regarding the foster parent-to-child ratio)
  • How the State addresses the training and supervision of caseworkers, foster parents, and other providers with respect to this population

The Stephanie Tubbs Jones Child Welfare Services (CWS) program (title IV-B, part 1) offers States more flexible funding for a broad array of services related to child protection and foster care. The reauthorization provided for funding title IV-B, subpart 1 at the current level of $325 million through FY 2016.

The CRS report, "Child Welfare: Funding for Child and Family Services Authorized Under Title IV-B of the Social Security Act," is available on the National Association of Public Child Welfare Administrators website: (720 KB)

The Children's Bureau IM-11-06 is available on the CB website: (240 KB)

The Children's Bureau PI-12-05 is available on the CB website: (908 KB)