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New Jersey Department of Children and Families Policy Manual

 

Manual:

CP&P

Child Protection and Permanency

Effective Date:

Volume:

IV

Out of Home Placement

Chapter:

A

General Placement Considerations

4-9-2012

Subchapter:

4

Placement Activities

Issuance:

200

Day of Placement

 

 

DAY OF PLACEMENT       4-5-2010

 

The Worker and Resource Family Support Worker shall:

 

1.    Select a Resource Family Whose Strengths Meet the Needs of the Child Entering Placement -- Employ agency-approved matching tools and techniques, in an attempt to make the best possible placement for the child, based on the child’s unique needs, circumstances, age, and other characteristics. See CP&P-IV-B-2-100, Resource Home Selection, for additional information related to selection of a resource home.

 

2.    Seek to Minimize Negative Impact on the Child -- Pre-placement efforts to minimize the trauma of separation of the child from his or her birth family include:

 

    Engaging the birth parent and child, if appropriate, in the decision-making process regarding the placement

 

    Convening a Family Team Meeting prior to placement, whenever possible

 

    Placing siblings together. See CP&P-IV-B-2-200, Efforts to Promote Placing Siblings Together

 

    Placing the child in a home in or near his or her neighborhood, unless the child‘s kin lives elsewhere, or the child has special needs which cannot be met with services in a nearby home; CP&P-I-A-1-200, Least Restrictive and Close Proximity

 

    Making arrangements to ensure that the child continues to attend his or her own "home" school, unless doing so would not be in the child's best interests, even if that requires developing special transportation arrangements (see CP&P-VII-A-1-100, Educational Stability)

 

    Obtaining the child’s health/medical and school records

 

    Placing the child with a resource parent who speaks the same language

 

    Make Necessary Pre-Placement Arrangements -- Coordinate and facilitate the transition of the child into a resource home by ensuring that all pre-placement arrangements have been completed and that all the parties are appropriately prepared for the placement.  See CP&P-IV-A-4-100, Preparation of the Child, for additional policy related to minimizing trauma to the child during the placement process.

 

MINIMIZE TRAUMA AT THE TIME OF PLACEMENT                        4-9-2012

 

The Worker shall:

 

1.   Direct casework efforts toward minimizing the confusion, disruption, and trauma to the child and family that can otherwise accompany a placement.

 

2.    Employ a "Buddy" or "Team" Approach - Take another CP&P professional staff member with you when first placing a child, or when moving a child from one home to another.  Ensure that one staff member stays with the child to focus solely on the needs of the child throughout the placement process, while utilizing other staff to complete the necessary paperwork for the placement and to work out placement details with the resource family.

 

Pre-Placement Assessment (Health) - See CP&P-V-A-1-1300.

 

The Worker shall help the Child Transition into the Resource Family Home by:

 

     •      Asking the birth parent to collect all the child's necessary personal belongings

 

     •      Giving the child a sense of consistency and familiarity, by making every effort to bring along the child's familiar objects, such as his or her favorite toys, clothes, books, photographs, and any material items or possessions important to the child

 

     •      Whenever possible, and with the consent of the resource parent, having the child's parent accompany the child to the resource family home on the day of placement

 

     •      Making the child feel as much at ease as possible upon arriving at the resource family home

 

     •      Staying with the child, to allow the child time needed to adjust to his or her new surroundings

 

The Worker, the birth parent and the resource parent discuss concerns or questions which the child may have about the placement.

 

Consider whether it is appropriate to refer the child to support services for in-home counseling, to assist with his or her transition into the resource family home.

 

The visitation plan for the first visit after the date of placement also is completed.  See CP&P-IV-A-5-100.

 

Provide the Resource Parent with the Following Information:

 

     •      The child's name and birth date, and if he or she prefers to be called by a nickname

 

     •      The Local Office telephone number, and the Division's emergency telephone number (1-877-652-2873)

 

     •      The name and direct telephone number of the primary Worker and Supervisor

 

     •      The child's HBID (Medicaid Health Benefits Identification) card, if available, Medicaid Emergency Services Letter, or other medical coverage authorization; the Worker advises the resource parent if the child is covered by private health insurance, if known, and explains the Medicaid HMO enrollment options and process

 

     •      The initial clothing check, if appropriate

 

     •      The child's complete medical history and health information on the CP&P Form 11-10, Health Passport and Placement Assessment, within 72 hours of placement.  See N.J.A.C. 3A:15-2.5(b).

 

     •      An education record for each child initially entering resource home placement who is subject to the State laws governing compulsory education on the CP&P Form 5-16.  See N.J.A.C. 3A:15-2.6.

 

     •      Any relevant information regarding the child that has not already been shared.

 

PLACEMENT KIT–

 

The Placement Kit serves as a tool for both the Worker and resource parents.  It provides a place to organize all relevant information regarding the child, and guides the Worker to address issues that are important to the child and the resource family.

 

The kit is comprised of a durable folder that contains essential information on the child being placed in out-of-home placement.  The kit is intended as both an organizational tool for staff making placements and as a source of information for resource parents.  Also, use of the kit facilitates communication between staff and resource parents at the time of placement.

 

On the inner front cover of the placement kit folder, there is a list of contents that the Worker compiles prior to placement.  The kit and all contents are used at each placement.  The back outer cover of the kit provides a placement protocol that the Worker and the resource parent sign at the time of placement.

 

The entire kit is left with the resource parent at time of placement so that they may have comprehensive information on the child in their care.

 

The resource parent should add to the kit any pertinent information on the child while living in their home.  When the child leaves the resource home, the CP&P Worker retrieves the kit from the resource parent.

 

Placement Kits are stocked in the Local Office and available for Workers to use at the time of a child's placement.

 

Resource Family Facilitator

 

Handle Details to Ease Placement -- Prior to placement, verify that the resource parent is an approved vendor by conducting a search in NJ SPIRIT, to further ensure appropriate case management and maintenance payments.

 

When the child is placed, record the placement in NJ SPIRIT according to NJ SPIRIT procedures.

 

PROCEDURES RELATED TO THE DAY OF PLACEMENT            2-21-2012

 

RESPONSIBILITY

ACTION REQUIRED

Worker

 

1.     Encourage the child to take some familiar possessions with him or her.

 

2.       Provide luggage, if needed, to safely transport a child's clothing and belongings.  Purchase luggage through the LOBA Fund.  A child's possessions should never be transported in large plastic bags, except in an emergency, when no immediate alternative container is available.  See CP&P-IX-F-1-300, Purchase Luggage for Transporting a Child's Clothing.

 

3.     Encourage the parent to accompany the child to the resource home, when appropriate.

 

4.     Transport the child to the resource home.  Coordinate placement arrangements according to the child's medical care needs with the resource parent and the CP&P Local Office Child Health Unit Nurse.

 

5.     Employ the "buddy" or "team" approach to allow one professional staff member to focus solely on the needs of the child.  Assist in the child's initial adjustment to the resource home.

 

6.     Give the resource parent:

 

    Your name, Local Office telephone number With your extension, and emergency SCR  telephone number;

 

    The child's MEI card or other medical coverage authorization card;

 

    The CP&P Form 5-49, Resource Parent Identification Letter.  This letter gives the resource parent authority to register the child in school and arrange for medical care or social services as necessary.  If it is not possible to provide this letter at the time of placement, give one to the resource parent as soon thereafter as possible;

 

    The initial clothing check, when appropriate;

 

    The Placement Kit, which outlines various questions and issues to address when placing a child with a resource family; and

 

    Additional relevant information regarding the child and birth family.

 

7.     Advise the resource parent that the child must be registered for and attending school within 72 hours of placement.

 

8.     Assure that the resource parent has appropriate child passenger restraint system or booster seat, if needed for the child.  See CP&P-IX-F-1-300 and CP&P-III-C-2-500.

 

9.      Advise the resource parent if the child is covered by private health insurance.  If not, advise the resource parent to take the child to participating Medicaid providers only.  If the child will be "automatically" enrolled in an HMO, inform the resource parent regarding procedures for enrollment and compliance.