Together with the College of Social Work at OSU, OERC staff and affiliates at Case Western have undertaken a project to review the structure of the federally mandated Citizen Review Panels managed by the Office of Families and Children within the Ohio Department of Job and Family Services. These panels provide external oversight and make policy recommendations to Children’s Protective Services (CPS) in Ohio and its roughly 88 county offices.
CPS offices around the state investigate reported instances of possible child abuse and neglect – reports that mostly originate with teachers, counselors, principals and other school staff. Neglected and abused children are among the most needy of Ohioans and their problems must be dealt with not only by the county offices of CPS, but by educators all over the state. Additionally, children in foster care face serious obstacles to establishing stable lives and careers, making this project relevant to not only our education projects but also our workforce training and post-secondary education projects.
Sarah Parmenter, MSW, LSW
The Ohio State University