Cooley Law School President and Dean Don LeDuc Receives First-Ever Community Recognition Award

leduc_teen_court_award.jpgLansing Teen Court, a community-based and highly collaborative program of Child & Family Services, announced today that it has awarded Don LeDuc, president and dean of the Thomas M. Cooley Law School, with the organization's first-ever Community Recognition Award.

"To say the least, we are grateful for Don's civic-minded nature, his commitment to education and his support of creative and community-based methods of resolving juvenile justice and community challenges through collaboration," said Mike Botke, director of Teen Court.

The basis for the Community Recognition Award includes making a significant contribution to the community, whether monetary or in deed. LeDuc is the first to receive the award and was selected to honor his commitment, not only to Teen Court, but to community collaboration as well.

"Cooley is honored to be involved with the Teen Court program," said LeDuc. "Our staff, professors and students have embraced this program, as it gives a second chance to young people and provides an invaluable service to the Lansing community."

Adoption Option receives grant from foundation

By the Midland Daily News

The Midland Area Community Foundation is collaborating with a local adoption agency to help children take a leap toward a successful academic future.

The MACF awarded Adoption Option Inc. a $30,000 grant that is to be spread over a three-year period to provide a summertime academic enrichment program for children who have lived in foster care or some other similar type of out-of-home placement. Middle school age adolescents who reside in Midland County and surrounding areas are the focus of the camp. The program's goal is to introduce new skills and strengthen existing ones in the effort to prepare foster children for success in college and later life.

FYI • July 23, 2010 • No. 15

FYI • July 23, 2010 • No. 15
The next FYI bulletin will be issued August 6, 2010

• The National Council of Nonprofits seeks input from private agencies contracting with state and local governments—At a time when human services organizations are still struggling with the economy, some nonprofits are reporting another worrisome trend: state and local governments are not paying the organizations what they promised, when they promised, or with enough funding to pay the full cost of services. We have certainly seen this trend in Michigan. According to an ongoing analysis by the National Council of Nonprofits, governments are finding new ways to shortchange nonprofits and exploit the contracting relationship. See the five worst government contracting abuses. Has your agency experienced any of the following practices or abuses by state or local governments?
• Delayed payments
• Contract terms amended in mid-contract
• Imposition of fees or deductions from what the government would otherwise owe
• Failure/refusal to pay indirect costs
• Failure to pay the full cost of providing services under the contracts
If so, please share your story with the National Council of Nonprofits, and any documentation you have, so they can investigate the seriousness of the government contracting challenges in your state. You will find a link called “share your story” at this website:

• Legislative update—All is quiet at the State Capitol, with further work on the state budgets expected to resume mid-August following the primaries. Don’t forget to get out and vote in the August 3 primary election!


FYI • July 9, 2010 • No. 14

FYI • July 9, 2010 • No. 14
The next FYI bulletin will be issued July 23, 2010

• Legislature on recess—Michigan legislators are on break, expected to return to Lansing on July 21.
• State budget update—Governor Granholm signed the K-12 budget into effect this week, giving schools the financial information they need for state aid as they plan their upcoming school year. The Governor exercised her line item veto by eliminating special funding to school programs in Pontiac and Saginaw. She also cut partial restoration of funds to high wealth districts under the so-called 20j spending plans. Appropriations Committee conferees continued their work on sorting out the differences between the separate House and Senate approved budgets that need to be reconciled. Administration and legislative hopes were dashed of having all budgets completed by July 1, well in advance of the start of the state’s fiscal year on October 1. Leaders hope that some of the budgets can be finalized for votes on July 21 and July 28, the only two scheduled session days this month.

• DHS communications posted at—The items listed below can be found within; log in with your user name and password and go to “DHS Communications” in the righthand column. Need a Federation user name and password? Contact Here is a list of items issued since the last FYI:
➢ June 28: Billing Instructions for Juvenile Guardianship Administrative Rate
➢ June 30: Mother/Baby Residential Programs
➢ June 30: New Fingerprinting Process for Child Welfare Foster and Adoptive Applicants
➢ July 7: Transition of Foster Care Children into Medicaid Health Plans
➢ July 8: Permanency Planning Conference (PPC) Data Entry and Training
➢ July 8: Case Load Count Letter


Foster Care Review Board 2009 Annual Report

FCRBAnnRep.pngThis report, submitted pursuant to 1997 PA 170, § 9, provides an overview of the review board’s functions and program activity details from this past year. Included are data, trend summaries, and observations gleaned by the board during 2009 from the review of cases involving over 1,300 children in foster care. These reviews were conducted by 200 dedicated and well-trained citizen volunteers. The information obtained from case reviews provides an objective, third-party evaluation of the care that Michigan’s foster care system provides to abused and neglected children.

This year’s report and recommendations address significant issues related to achieving safe and timely permanency for children in foster care, particularly in the area of parent-child reunification.

The Foster Care Review Board (FCRB) is a program established by the legislature to provide third-party review of foster care placements and related matters. There are 30 local review boards throughout the state, comprised of citizen volunteers. For those who are not familiar with the program, complete information can be found at

FYI • June 25, 2010 • No. 13

FYI • June 25, 2010 • No. 13
The next FYI bulletin will be issued July 9, 2010

teenconference.png150 youth and adults "Took Charge of Their Journey!" at the Michigan Teen Conference —Congratulations to the amazing Teen Conference Planning Committee chaired by Laura Mitchell of conference fiduciary Lutheran Social Services of Michigan. The conference featured foster care alumni Cherish Thomas and Danita Echols as the Keynote Speakers, both with a message for the youth surrounding the theme of the conference, "Take Charge of Your Journey." Several vendors and community partners provided workshops geared towards independent living skills and planning for a successful future. The Walk through Life activity allowed youth the opportunity to interact with community resources and businesses and practice some of the life skills they learned about at the conference. Thank you to all of the agencies who participated and to all of the youth who made it worthwhile! We are already looking forward to and anticipating next year's event!

• DHS Budget bill—The next step for the FY 2011 DHS Budget is conference committee, with no firm date set for finalization.


Special Review of Higher Risk Cases Period Three: 10/1/09-3/31/10

The Dwayne B. v. Granholm consent decree requires DHS to develop and implement a statewide Quality Assurance (QA) program, directed by a QA Unit established within the DHS central office. The Child Welfare QA Unit has been established as a division of the Child Welfare Improvement Bureau to ensure the provision of service in accordance with DHS philosophy. The Child Welfare QA Unit’s aim is to foster a continuous quality improvement (CQI) culture throughout DHS by introducing CQI concepts to all levels of the child welfare system, training staff on improvement processes and integrating CQI philosophy into long-term and everyday decision making. The QA unit has developed an internal capacity to undertake data collection, verification, and analysis in addition to case record reviews for the higher risk cases identified in the consent decree.

After the submission of the CQI plan in April 2009, the QA Unit began to conduct special reviews as specified by the consent decree. The Data Management Unit (DMU) provides an initial list of identified cases for the high-risk categories. The QA Unit reviews each identified case in the Foster Care Services Worker Support System (SWSS-FAJ) to pre-screen for possible data errors, and ensure that the case meets the cohort definition. The DMU and the QA Unit will continue to refine the querying process to the fullest extent possible.

FYI • June 11, 2010 • No. 12

FYI • June 11, 2010 • No. 12
The next FYI bulletin will be issued June 25, 2010

June 22-23, 2010 • MiTeen Conference "Take Charge of Your Journey!"
Contact conference coordinator and fiduciary Lutheran Social Services of MI
TODAY if you need to firm up registrations for this conference:
Reach Diana Ripley at or (800) 765-0541.

DHS key administrators to attend June 16 and July 21 MIN meetings. Read details within the FYI.
June 16:
• ADOPTION: Karen Iverson, Adoption Subsidy Office
• Joint LICENSING & FOSTER CARE: Jim Gale, Janice Tribble, Deb Buchanan, Christine Rehagen, Fran Cook
July 21:

Child Fatality Reviews: 4/1/09 - 12/15/09 Quality Assurance Report

dhsbanner.jpgThe Michigan Department of Human Services (DHS) is responsible for administering the state’s child welfare program. The DHS mission includes a commitment to ensure that children and youths are safe; to sustain a higher quality of life; and to give children in DHS permanent and stable family lives. The DHS Children’s Services Administration is responsible for planning, directing and coordinating statewide child welfare programs, including social services provided directly by DHS via statewide local offices and services provided by private child-placing agencies.

A settlement agreement was signed July 3, 2008 and a final consent decree was entered on October 28, 2008. Since then, DHS has made significant strides to improve the quality of service to children and families in the child welfare system by reducing caseloads for its workers, moving more children to permanency, reducing the number of children in out-of-home care, launching a continuous quality improvement system, increasing oversight of contracted providers, and developing extensive data reporting capabilities.

The consent decree requires DHS to ensure that qualified and competent individuals conduct a fatality review independent of the county in which the fatality occurred for each child who died while in the foster care custody of DHS. The fatality review process is overseen by the Office of Family Advocate.

Vistas Nuevas Head Start Celebrates Culture in the Community

matrix.jpgVistas Nuevas Head Start, a program of Matrix Human Services will host its’ annual Celebrations of Culture Parade on Thursday, June 3, 2010 at 10am. More than 1400 head start children will march from Holy Redeemer Church to Clark Park in celebration of the various cultures in the Detroit community.

The Celebrations of Culture Parade will represent several countries around globe in support the diversity that is among all of us each and every day. Those countries include: Spain, Trinidad and Tabago, Hawaii, Ecuador, Ghana, Mexico, Scotland, Puerto Rico, Native American, Lebanon, Brazil, France, Portugal.

Vistas Nuevas Head Start is the largest head start program in the city of Detroit. Vistas’ has more than 1400 children annually, teaches in 3 languages (English, Spanish and Arabic) and operates 13 locations all located in Detroit’s Southwest community.

“This annual event highlights the multi-cultural community we live and serve in everyday. It is important for our children to know, celebrate and embrace the differences within all of us.” – states Debra Spring, Vice President of Education and Director of Vistas Nuevas


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