Child Welfare Practice Models

California’s child welfare community has a long and respected history of creating and implementing successful approaches to serving children and families.  Our state supervised, county-administered system has provided numerous opportunities at both the state and local level for the development of innovative practices and initiatives aimed at improving outcomes.

Over the past several years, efforts have been underway to develop practice models that are intended to serve as a framework for a supportive and aligned child welfare system that promotes consistent child welfare practice statewide.  Two key child welfare practice models with similar elements, yet unique strengths, have emerged from this work.  They provide a guide for child welfare services development, implementation, and delivery and are aimed at improving accountability and outcomes for children and families.

  • The Child and Family Practice Model (CFPM) was inspired, co-created and is being implemented and sustained by four California counties and their agency, community and Tribal partners who participated in the federal Permanency Innovation Initiative (PII) and the state led California Partners for Permanency effort between 2010 and 2016. The practice model has formed new pathways for partnering with community in developing and supporting a comprehensive and culturally responsive approach to both practice and system level change.  The model is designed to improve safety, permanency and well-being outcomes for all children and reduce disparities in outcomes for communities and Tribes whose children are disproportionately represented in the child welfare system.

  • The California Child Welfare Core Practice Model (CA CPM) is a statewide effort that has been built by integrating existing initiatives and proven practices with extensive feedback from county representatives and community and Tribal partners.  The practice model builds on the Katie A. Core Practice Model ( and leverages other important child welfare work in the state, including California Partners for Permanency and Safety Organized Practice.  The emerging California practice model will guide interactions at all levels of the child welfare agency and include a full implementation strategy that incorporates a wide range of organizational factors designed to support improved practice, services, and outcomes for children and familles.