Case Planning for Families Involved With Child Welfare Agencies - Pennsylvania

Date: April 2018

When Case Plans Are Required

Citation: Admin. Code Tit. 55, § 3130.61

Within 60 days of accepting a family for service, a written family service plan shall be developed for each family receiving services through the county agency.

Who May Participate in the Case Planning Process

Citation: Admin. Code Tit. 55, § 3130.61

The county agency shall prepare the family service plan. The agency shall provide family members, including the child, his or her representatives, and service providers, the opportunity to participate in the development and amendment of the service plan if the opportunity does not jeopardize the child's safety. The method by which these opportunities are provided shall be recorded in the plan.

Contents of a Case Plan

Citation: Admin. Code Tit. 55, §§ 3130.61; 3130.67

The service plan shall be a discrete part of the family case record and shall include the following:

  • Identifying information pertaining to both the child and other family members
  • A description of the specific circumstances under which the case was accepted
  • The service objectives for the family, identifying changes needed to protect children in the family in need of protection from abuse, neglect, and exploitation and to prevent their placement
  • The services to be provided to achieve the objectives of the plan
  • The actions to be taken by the parents, children, the county agency or other agencies, and the dates when these actions will be completed
  • The results of family service plan reviews and placement reviews

If the child must be placed out of the home, the service plan also shall include the following:

  • A description of the circumstances that make placement necessary
  • To the extent available and accessible, health and educational information on the child that includes the following:
    • The names and addresses of the child's health and educational providers
    • The child's school records and grade-level performance
    • Assurances that the child's placement in foster care takes into account proximity to the school in which the child is enrolled at the time of placement
    • A record of the child's immunizations and medications
    • The child's known medical problems, including the identification of known physical, mental, or emotional disabilities
    • Other relevant health and educational information concerning the child determined to be appropriate by the county agency
  • An identification of the type of home or facility in which the child will be placed and the appropriateness of the placement, including how the placement setting is the least restrictive, most familylike setting available for the child, consistent with the best interests and special needs of the child
  • A description of the service objectives that shall be achieved by the parents or child prior to reunification
  • For every child age 16 or older, the appropriateness of providing programs and services to help the child prepare for transition from foster care to independent living
  • An identification of services to be provided to the family, the child, and, if applicable, the foster family to achieve the goal for the child in placement and to ensure that the child receives proper care
  • An identification of the steps the county agency shall take to ensure that the service plan is implemented, including a schedule for a review of the status of each child
  • The schedule for visits between the child and parents, including frequency, location, and participants
  • A description of the services actually provided to the child and the parents to implement the plan and achieve the goal established for the child in placement
  • The results of placement reviews