• Factors influencing retention of child welfare staff: a systematic review of research: a report from the Institute for the Advancement of Social Work Research conducted in collaboration with University of Maryland School of Social Work Center for Families & Institute for Human Services Policy

      Zlotnik, Joan Levy; DePanfilis, Diane; Daining, Clara; McDermott Lane, Melissa; Institute for the Advancement of Social Work Research (IASWR); Univerisity of Maryland, Baltimore. School of Social Work. Center for Families & Institute for Human Services Policy (2005-06)
      A systematic review of research and outcomes studies related to recruitment and retention in child welfare. Although there have been numerous literature reviews that report that there are organizational and personal factors that affect recruitment and retention, there has been no systematic review of research studies to more fully examine “what works” in regard to recruitment and retention in child welfare and to illuminate the specific methodology and definitions used to frame those studies. It is hoped that by synthesizing the results across studies, practitioners, researchers, educators, policy makers, and administrators in the child welfare field may use lessons learned to take steps to increase the retention of a competent child welfare workforce. (from Executive Summary)
    • Historical analysis of the implementation of federal policy: A case study of accessing Title IV-E funds to support social work education

      Zlotnik, Joan Levy; Cornelius, Llewellyn Joseph, 1959- (1998)
      Social work education programs are currently accessing Title IV-E training funds to prepare social workers for child welfare, but this funding source existed for almost ten years before it was broadly use. Using a retrospective, longitudinal case study methodology, this study developed a multi-dimensional analytical framework to examine the extent to which the enabling legislation, the policy goals and objectives, federal regulations, clearly defined beneficiary population, role of administrators and their technical competence, causal theory, adequacy of resources, organization structure and process, and political issues are factors in the implementation process. The case study included an extensive review of the literature surrounding the passage of the Child Welfare and Adoption Assistance Act of 1980, which includes Title IV-E; interviews with current and former federal staff Congressional staff and national organizations' representatives; and analysis of policy documents. Findings indicate that to understand the implementation of federal policy one should examine the interplay and communication of all of the stakeholders and the changes in political, economic and social forces overtime. When Title IV-E was created little attention was paid to it because other funding sources were available to educate social workers for child welfare careers. The Reagan Administration brought new approaches that resulted in funding cutbacks and limited technical assistance. At the same time national organizations stopped advocating for training. Vague enabling legislation, vague regulations, variations in interpretation of policy, limited support for requirements that child welfare workers should be professionally trained social workers and the lack of expertise of federal and state staff are all interrelated factors that contributed to difficulties in implementation. This research suggests that in order to obtain or maintain federal support for social work education there is an on-going need to study policy implementation; to understand the differences between entitlement and grant programs; to develop partnerships with states; to develop outcome data about the "difference" professionally trained social workers can make; be familiar with all aspects of legislation; to create advocacy collaboratives that extend beyond the social work education community and to provide opportunities for networking and information exchange.
    • Professional Education for Child Welfare Practice: Improving Retention In Public Child Welfare Agencies

      Zlotnik, Joan Levy; DePanfilis, Diane; Daining, Clara; McDermott Lane, Melissa (2005-07)
      A recent systematic review of research and outcome studies was undertaken by the Institute for the Advancement of Social Work Research (IASWR) in collaboration with the University of Maryland School of Social Work to answer the question: What conditions (personal and organizational factors) and strategies influence the retention of staff in public child welfare agencies? Of the 154 studies and reports found, 25 research studies specifically focused on child welfare populations and examined retention as the dependent variable. Of those research reports, seven focused on a specific strategy – Title IV-E Education for Child Welfare Practice — in examining retention outcomes. This Brief provides information about the Title IV-E Education for Child Welfare Practice program and examines the findings of those seven studies. This can both inform the field about the outcomes of Title IV-E supported educational opportunities as well as effective retention strategies.
    • Retaining Competent Child Welfare Workers: Lessons From Research

      Zlotnik, Joan Levy; DePanfilis, Diane; Daining, Clara; McDermott Lane, Melissa (2005-07)
      To determine effective retention strategies that child welfare agencies can implement, the Institute for the Advancement of Social Work Research (IASWR) in collaboration with the University of Maryland School of Social Work’s Center for Families and Institute for Human Services Policy, and with support from the Annie E. Casey Foundation’s Human Services Workforce Initiative, undertook a systematic review of research and outcome studies to answer the question: What conditions and strategies influence the retention of staff in public child welfare? Conditions include both personal and organizational factors, and strategies are actions taken by some entity that are targeted to retain staff. A synthesis of results across studies can provide lessons learned that can be used by practitioners, researchers, educators, policy makers, and administrators to take steps to increase the retention of a competent child welfare workforce.
    • Retention of Child Welfare Staff: Implications for Social Work Education and Research

      Zlotnik, Joan Levy; DePanfilis, Diane; Council on Social Work Education--Annual Program Meeting (2006-02-18)
      This presentation given at the CSWE Annual Program Meeting on February 18, 2006 is a summary of the strategy and outcomes detailed in "Factors Influencing Retention of Child Welfare Staff: A Systematic Review of Research: A Report from the Institute for the Advancement of Social Work Research Conducted in collaboration with University of Maryland School of Social Work Center for Families & Institute for Human Services Policy."
    • Understanding Retention In Child Welfare: Suggestions For Further Research And Evaluation

      Zlotnik, Joan Levy; DePanfilis, Diane; Daining, Clara; McDermott Lane, Melissa (2005-07)
      A recent systematic review of research on retention in child welfare, undertaken by the Institute for the Advancement of Social Work Research (IASWR) in collaboration with the University of Maryland School of Social Work, identified 25 studies over the past three decades that specifically address the conditions and factors that influence retention and the strategies that have been implemented to increase retention. However, analysis of the differences across these studies and the limitations of the available research lead to recommendations for future studies. The focus of this Brief is to discuss these research design issues and to make recommendations to the field about methods to enhance the scope and quality of research efforts to address retention issues.