GAO Addresses Federal Response to Working with Tribes

 

On February 25, 2015, the Government Accounting Office (GAO) released a report outlining several tribes’ efforts to develop an independent child welfare system. When Fostering Successful Connections and Increasing Adoptions Act of 2008 (Fostering Connections) was passed, the legislation included significant changes to how Native American Tribes could address child abuse/neglect and foster care within the Tribe. Fostering Connections authorized tribes to actually implement and operate a comprehensive system of care for the continuum of child welfare services. Part of the legislation provided an appropriation of $3 million per year for up to ten grants to tribes interested in pursuing their own program. Since the grants became available in October 2009, the Administration for Children and Families (ACF) has awarded development grants to 27 tribes. Each of the tribes are at different stages of development within the 24-month grant period. [More]

 

New Report Finds Disparities in Student Suspensions

 

The Center for Civil Rights Remedies at the University of California at Los Angeles Civil Rights Project released its February 2015 report examining the national trends in student suspensions. The report documents large racial/ethnic disparities in suspension rates and opines that the suspensions will likely “have an adverse and disparate impact on the academic achievement and life outcomes of millions of historically disadvantaged children.” [More]

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Categories:Education

 

CA EDD Awards TC Significant Contract Amendment

 

The State of California Employment Development Department (EDD) has been a client of PCG Technology Consulting (TC) for over 10 years. In an effort to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of the State’s Unemployment Insurance (UI) program, the EDD initiated an enterprise approach to modernizing UI processes and technologies. These automation projects enhanced service delivery systems, improved access to services, increased the integrity of the UI program, and built a more flexible and responsive infrastructure. [More]

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Categories:Technology Consulting

 

Congressional Panel Discusses Updating FERPA

 

A February 18, 2015 Special Ed Connection article reports that a U.S. Congressional committee panel held an informational hearing on February 12 to discuss possible updates to the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). [More]

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DHHS Secretary Announces $28 Million Grant Program to Advance Health Information Exchange

 

On Tuesday, February 3, 2015, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwell announced at a meeting of the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT (ONC) a two-year grant program to advance the adoption and use of interoperable health IT tools and services to support health information exchange. [More]

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Categories:Health and Human Services

 

Who’s to Blame for Child Abuse and Neglect Resulting in Child Death?

 

The media attention that a child death obtains is different for every situation. When it is accidental, the local media may report on it, but it is often not highlighted for days. The death of child who is known to a state child welfare agency typically brings the state agency under tremendous scrutiny for failing the child in some way – agency leadership gets fired, workers get fired or suspended, and in some cases, workers are prosecuted for contributing to the death of a child or for malicious neglect. Recently, a state agency administrator of child protection was quoted as saying, “Parents are to blame for the injuries or death of their children.” [More]

 

House Committee Approves NCLB Rewrite

 

In a February 11, 2015 press release, the U.S. House of Representatives Education and the Workforce Committee announced its approval of a bill to overhaul the No Child Left Behind Act (NCLB). According to the press release, the Republican-backed bill, called the Student Success Act, eliminates the current national accountability approach based on standardized student testing and returns the responsibility for measuring student performance to states and school districts. [More]

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Categories:Education

 

AL Medicaid Agency Awards TC Significant Contract Amendment

 

The State of Alabama is leveraging both the Affordable Care Act (ACA) regulations and the A-87 exception to create a single centralized eligibility system to replace multiple antiquated less functional systems. This approach will lower costs to both the state and its federal partners while improving the experience for users as well as creating a more flexible, easily configurable system. This expanded effort for the AL eligibility system will impact 12 legacy systems. [More]

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Categories:Technology Consulting

 

CGCS Reports on Progress of SIG Schools

 

In a January 30, 2015 press release, the Council of Great City Schools (CGCS) announced the release of its study on the progress of urban schools that were awarded grants under the federal School Improvement Grants (SIG) program. SIG grants are intended to support turning around low-achieving schools. According to the CGCS study, approximately 70 percent of the urban SIG grantees have shown progress in school improvement over the past 3 years. [More]

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Categories:Education

 

CMS Issues Bulletin to States Re: Medicare-Eligible Medicaid Enrollees

 

On January 23, 2015, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a bulletin to states entitled, “Enrollment and Retention Flexibilities to Better Serve Medicare-Eligible Medicaid Enrollees.” It is noted in the bulletin that when Medicaid enrollees in the new adult low-income group become eligible for Medicare, they lose eligibility for that category of Medicaid. [More]

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Categories:Health and Human Services