A New Approach to Child Welfare Training
In 2010, the Washington State Department of Children, Youth, and Families (then called Children's Administration) invited three of the state's leading universities—the University of Washington, University of Washington Tacoma, and Eastern Washington University—to collaborate on improving the professional expertise of the state's child welfare workers and the skills of those caring for adoptive and foster children.
As a unified, coordinated system, the Alliance has expanded training opportunities, increased funding, and lifted the burden of training management from DCYF so that it can focus on its core mission: providing services to vulnerable children and families.
Training that Matters
At the Alliance, we deliver training that matters so that workforce professionals can achieve mastery in their critical work with vulnerable children and families. We focus on quality, and we are showing results. In 2016, our average rating from classroom participants was an impressive 4.5 out of 5.
We now offer more than 125 training classes and customized coaching sessions to social service specialists, their supervisors and child welfare administrators at training sites across the state—a 12-fold increase in training opportunities under our leadership.
Additionally, we've expanded training and education for our state-supported caregivers who play a crucial role in the lives of children in foster care. Despite these gains, we continuously strive for improvement. We are using the latest in data-driven scientific tools to measure the relevance, design and impact of our training so that we can build one of the best welfare workforce training systems in the nation.