A | B | C | D | E | F | G | I | J | L | M | N | O | P | R | S | T | V | W

CAMIS or Case and Management Information System

Washington State Children’s Administration’s foster care database prior to transition to FamLink in 2009 was called CAMIS.

Case Management

In Washington State, case management  means: 1) convening family meetings, developing, revising,, and monitoring implementation of any case plan or individual service and safety plan; 2) coordinating and monitoring services needed by the child and family, caseworker-child visits, and family visits;  and 3) the assumption of court-related duties, excluding legal representation, but including preparing court reports, attending judicial hearings and permanency hearings, and ensuring that the child is progressing toward permanency within state and federal mandates (including the Indian child welfare act).


Case Plan

As defined by Washington State Children’s Administration, a case plan is a written plan, developed by the caseworker with the family, of the anticipated activities related to the case, including service agreements.


The number of cases (children or families) assigned to an individual worker in a given time period is referred to as a caseload and reflects a ratio of cases to child welfare workers and may be measured for an individual worker, all workers assigned to a specific type of case, or all workers in a specified area (e.g., agency or region). Washington State’s Braam Settlement Agreement requires that 90% of the caseworkers have caseloads at or below 18 cases per caseworker. See Workload.


Child Abuse and Neglect (CA/N)

Washington State Administrative Code (WAC 388-15-009(1)) defines child abuse or neglect as the injury, sexual abuse, sexual exploitation, or injury of a child by any person under circumstances which cause harm to the child's health, welfare, or safety, or the negligent treatment or maltreatment of a child by a person responsible for or providing care to the child.” The Revised Code of Washington (RCW 26.44.020(14)) defines negligent treatment or maltreatment means “an act or a failure to act, or the cumulative effects of a pattern of conduct, behavior, or inaction, that evidences a serious disregard of consequences of such magnitude as to constitute a clear and present danger to a child's health, welfare, or safety, ….When considering whether a clear and present danger exists, evidence of a parent's substance abuse as a contributing factor to negligent treatment or maltreatment shall be given great weight. The fact that siblings share a bedroom is not, in and of itself, negligent treatment or maltreatment. Poverty, homelessness, or exposure to domestic violence [see RCW 26.50.010] that is perpetrated against someone other than the child does not constitute negligent treatment or maltreatment in and of itself.”


Child Abuse Prevention and Treatment Act (CAPTA)

Originally enacted in 1974 and was most recently amended and reauthorized by the Keeping Children and Families Safe Act of 2003, CAPTA was designed to support state child protective services systems through basic state grants; support child abuse prevention activities by funding discretionary grants to states and/or public or private agencies or organizations; and support innovation by funding research and demonstration project grants for preventing child maltreatment.


Child and Family Services Review (CFSR)

A series of 1994 amendments to the Social Security Act, CFSR authorizes the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) to review state child and family service programs. Reviews had traditionally focused primarily on assessing compliance with procedural requirements. Post-CFRS, the focus has been on a state’s capacity to create positive outcomes for children and families in the three main areas of safety, permanency, and child and family well-being, and on the results achieved by the provision of appropriate services. Reviews also examine each state's infrastructure or 'system' that supports the delivery of child welfare services. Since 2000, all states have been assessed for substantial conformity with certain Federal requirements for child protective, foster care, adoption, family preservation and family support, and independent living services. The Children's Bureau, in DHHS, administers CFSR’s in partnership with state agencies and consultant reviewers. Each CFSR is a two-stage process consisting of a Statewide Assessment and an onsite review of child and family service outcomes and program systems. States determined not to have achieved substantial conformity in all the areas assessed have two years to develop and implement a Program Improvement Plan addressing the areas of nonconformity. Washington State’s 2010 final report was completed in October 2011.

Child and Family Welfare Services (CFWS)

Both permanency planning and court-ordered services are provided by Children’s Administration’s CFWS to children and families to mitigate the risk of abuse or neglect so that children are able to safely return to their home of origin. CFWS oversees the health and well-being of children in out-of-home placements and provides ongoing assessments of child safety and risk factors. Children served by CFWS are dependents of the state (in-home services or out-of-home care) or legally free for adoption.

Child Health and Education Tracking (CHET) Screen

In Washington State, CHET identifies and organizes essential information regarding the physical health, development, connections, education, and emotional/behavioral health of all children less than 18 years of age in Children’s Administration custody. This information is recorded in a central database and a summary is shared with foster parents, relative caregivers, pre-adoptive parents, and caseworkers to use in placement decisions, case planning, and service delivery. Children in out-of-home care for 45 days or longer should have a completed and documented CHET Screen within 30 days of entering care.

Child Maltreatment

See Child Abuse and Neglect.

Child Protective Services (CPS)

Washington State, CPS provides 24 hour, seven days a week intake, screening and investigative services for reports of alleged child abuse and neglect. CPS investigators assess allegations of child abuse and neglect to determine the safety and protection needs of children. Law enforcement, courts, tribes, and community teams also provide an important component of the child protection system. When it appears that a child is in danger of being harmed or has already been seriously abused or neglected, CPS, with a police officer or court order putting the child in protective custody, places the child with a relative or in foster care. If the child is not returned to the parents or some other voluntary arrangement made within 72 hours, the matter must be reviewed by a court. If risk warrants ongoing placement, dependency petitions must be filed in court within 75 days.

Child Safety

In Washington State, providing for child safety is part of Children’s Administration’s core mission. Safety is the primary and essential focus that informs and guides all decisions made from intake to case closure.

Child Welfare System

The Child Welfare System receives and investigates reports of possible child abuse and neglect; provides supportive services to families to help ensure child safety; arranges for children to live with kin or with foster families; and arranges for family reunification, adoption, or other permanent family connections for children living in foster care/other out-of-home placements. The child welfare system provides services to some of the most vulnerable and troubled children and families.

Children's Administration (CA)

Washington State’s Department of Social and Health Services (DSHS) Children’s Administration (CA) is divided into three geographic regions managed by Washington State’s Division of Children and Family Services (DCFS) Regional Administrators. DCFS provides client services through its 46 field offices (plus the Office of Indian and Child Welfare) with nearly 2,500 direct service staff. Children and families become CA clients through four primary program areas: Child Protective Services (CPS), Family Voluntary Services (FVS), Child and Family Welfare Services (CFWS), and Family Reconciliation Services (FRS). These programs are responsible for the investigation of child abuse and neglect complaints, child protection, family preservation, family reconciliation, foster care, group care, in-home services, independent living, and adoption services for children under the age of 18. CA also provides services to eligible older youths between 18 and 21 years of age with developmental needs or who are pursuing post-secondary education. CA uses both paid personnel and community-based, contracted service providers throughout the state. In 2010, more than three percent of Washington State residents used CA services.

Children’s Administration Technology Services (CATS)

CATS provides the Children’s Administration (CA) with information technology support and training, and develops and maintains its information systems.

Co-occurring Disorders

The term “co-occurring disorders” is used in reference to an individual having one or more substance abuse disorders and one or more psychiatric disorders at the same time. 'Dual diagnosis' is an older term for 'co-occurring disorders.’


Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT)

In general, CBT is a form of treatment that focuses on examining the relationships between thoughts, feelings and behaviors. In child welfare work, trauma-focused CBT is an evidence-based treatment approach shown to help children, adolescents, and their caretakers overcome trauma-related difficulties. It is designed to reduce negative emotional and behavioral responses following child sexual abuse and other traumatic events. Alternative for Families is an example of an evidence-supported CBT intervention that targets individual child and parent characteristics related to the abusive experience, and the family context in which coercion or aggression occurs.





In research and statistics, a cohort is a group of individuals who share a characteristic at some specific time and who are then followed forward in time, with data being collected at one or more intervals. The most common use of the term is to describe a birth cohort, in which all the group members are born within a specified time period.


Concurrent Planning

In child welfare, concurrent planning is an approach that seeks to eliminate delays in attaining permanent families for children in the out-of-home care. Concurrent planning attempts to consider all reasonable options for permanency at the earliest possible time following a child’s entry into out-of-home care. For example, reunification with the child’s family of origin may be pursued simultaneously with the consideration of an alternative permanency goal (e.g., adoption).


Court Appointed Special Advocate (CASA)

Assigned by a court, CASA volunteers are responsible for studying and protecting the best interests of a child/youth in a dependency or termination proceeding. In Washington State, CASA volunteers investigate case facts, recommend a course of action to the court, facilitate the resolution of problems, and monitor progress towards establishing permanency for the child.



See Child Protective Services.

Crisis Nursery

See Emergency Respite Center.

Crisis Residential Centers (CRC)

In Washington State, CRCs provide temporary out-of-home shelter for youth ages 12 through 17 who run away from home, are in severe conflict with their parents, or foster youth in need of a crisis placement. CRCs are available twenty-four hours a day, seven days a week. Placement is limited to a maximum of five days, and services are focused on assessment of needs and family reunification.


See Protective Custody and DCFS custody.