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Texas’ 2015 Valentine Weekend Massacre of the CPS Handbook

by Jim Black


For the better part of the last decade, Texas has had the honor of having the most complete and comprehensive Child Protection Handbook nationwide. A handbook that family advocates from all 50 states used as a learning tool. That all changes February 15, 2015, when the Department of Family and Protective Services strips out close to 450 pages of functionality.
In 2010, Angel Eyes over Texas was founded to “Watch (CPS) while others can’t.“. They tracked all handbook changes on their blog www.aeovrt.org providing caseworkers, attorneys, advocates and other stakeholders quick easy access to the monthly changes starting in 2011. Their post reflecting the most recent changes is located here.
An effective handbook must contain both policy and procedures. It appears that a huge chuck of procedures were stripped away with this revision greatly reducing its effectiveness as a field manual. Case work is primarily field work. Field workers need to be able to work independent of direct supervision, therefore they need ready reference materials; preferably updated real time.
These changes were made with intent to simplify and improve efficiency while claiming to improve transparency and accountability have in fact done just the opposite.
The long awaited new polices for Investigations and Family Based Safety Services are listed below. Followed by an archived version of the old handbook.
Section 3000: Ensuring Child Safety
The links below reflect the same portion of the DFPS handbook from an archived version as of November 17, 2014.
JUL Nov Dec
2013 2014 2015
20 Nov 07 – 17 Nov 14 
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