Professional Resource

State and County Self-Assessment

State and County Self-Assessment

The following resources from ZERO TO THREE in partnership with leading child welfare and early childhood organizations provide guidance to states and counties on addressing the developmental needs of infants and toddlers in the child welfare system. State and local child welfare agencies, as well as communities and practitioners, can make real changes in how the needs of infants, toddlers, and families in child welfare should be met.

A Developmental Approach to Child Welfare Services for Infants, Toddlers, and Their Families: A Self-Assessment Tool for States and Counties Administering Child Welfare Services
This comprehensive assessment tool helps states and counties examine ways to embed a quality, developmental approach to serving infants and toddlers in the child welfare system, as well as meet the new federal requirements for state child welfare plans.  

Changing the Course for Infants and Toddlers: A Survey of State Child Welfare Policies and Initiatives 
This report by ZERO TO THREE and Child Trends presents findings from a 2013 survey of state child welfare agencies about the policies and practices that guide their work in addressing the needs of infants and toddlers who have been maltreated. It sets the stage for understanding how states are currently supporting young children and where opportunities exist to expand supports.

Three short companion pieces offer highlights from the survey and recommendations for state action:

A Call to Action on Behalf of Maltreated Infants and Toddlers
A Call to Action represents the collective vision of leading child welfare and early childhood development organizations on the important steps that can and should be taken in policies, programs, and practices to address the needs of vulnerable infants and toddlers who come to the attention of the child welfare system. The policy agenda is intended to provide a starting point for policymakers at all levels of government in creating a response to these special needs.  It first presents the compelling evidence for addressing the needs of infants and toddlers in the child welfare system, and then suggests key elements of a developmental approach for this vulnerable population.