Early Childhood Court Specialist
ChildNet, Inc. is a private, not-for-profit community-based care (CBC) agency servicing Broward and Palm Beach County. We are contracted with the State of Florida, Department of Children and Families, to provide case management support to abused, abandoned, and neglected children. ChildNet is nationally accredited by the Council on Accreditation (COA) and employs over 500 staff at its location in Ft Lauderdale and West Palm Beach, Florida.
The list of essential functions, as outlined herein, is intended to be representative of the tasks performed within this classification. It is not necessarily descriptive of any one position in the class. The omission of an essential function does not preclude management from assigning duties not listed herein.
Job Summary: This position promotes the safety, well-being and permanency of Early Childhood Court child (ren) and their families from the time of referral until the case is closed.
Responsibilities: Actively works to move the child from their current status to meet the best possible outcome in the shortest possible time, fulfilling established federal and state mandates by:
- Attending bi-weekly court hearings and makes recommendations to the judge on the Dependency Early Childhood Court child(ren)s behalf, unless age or circumstances supersedes this requirement. Assists the child(ren) in understanding all court proceedings.
- Interacting with families to establish needs and required services for clients through referrals for services, to include Child Parent Psychotherapy Providers for Dependency Early Childhood Court families. Works with clients to provide and refer families, caregivers, and children to the appropriate services to address identified needs. Provides support to foster homes and relative placements.
- Coordinating face-to-face visits with the child (ren) and family in the home every 30 days. Coordinate supervised visits between the parents and the child(ren) 3-5 times per week. Observes reports and makes recommendations based on their observations. Provides Dependency Early Childhood Court child (ren) with opportunities to visit parents, siblings, relatives, and others with court ordered visitation.
- Attend monthly family team meeting with a facilitator between the parent(s), Community Coordinator and Court Case Manager for those families that are in Early Childhood Court.
- Attend monthly Early Childhood Court organizational meetings that are held with the Judiciary, Court Case Management, Broward Sheriff’s office, Guardian Ad Litem Program, Office of Conflict Counsel, Attorney General’s Office, Service Providers, and ChildNet staff.
- Attend bi-monthly conference calls for Early Childhood Court with the Attorney General’s Office and ChildNet staff.
- Collecting data and provide data for all required reports for Early Childhood Court (ECC).
- Participating in local review committee meetings for Early Childhood Court (ECC).
- Meeting with the child (ren) and family in their home within 48 hours of case assignment.
- Gathering information about the family, including the make-up of the household, the social history of the family, any previous abuse reports, the educational, medical and behavioral health history of the child (ren), and the specific circumstances surrounding the alleged maltreatment.
- Photographing the child (ren) and arranges for fingerprinting of the child (ren) for the parents as needed.
- Offering immediate practical assistance to the family in obtaining Medicaid coverage, financial assistance or help with housing.
- Conducting face to face home visits with the parents, even when child (ren) is not placed in the same home.
- Proactively developing, assessing, and maintaining up-to-date case plans that accurately reflect the child (ren) and families’ circumstances over time. Promotes family involvement in all aspects of services to include case reviews and staffings.
- Evaluating, preparing reports, making recommendations and decisions on the child(ren) and families, i.e. family strengths, needs assessment, safety plan, judicial reviews, post disposition reports, status reports, home studies, case plans, and risk assessment reports.
- Recognizing, respecting and responding to the unique, culturally-defined needs of others served.
The items listed above are intended to provide an overview of the essential functions of the job. This is not an exhaustive list of all functions and responsibilities that the position may be required to provide.
Skills / Requirements
* Must have a Bachelor’s degree in social services or a related field (masters preferred)
* Must have a Florida Department of Children and Families Child Welfare Certification.
* At least Two (2) years work experience in human services or child welfare programs preferred.
* Strong computer skills to include Microsoft Office 365 Suite and strong data entry skills
* Must possess a valid and clean Florida drivers license without any restrictions and/or citations that would affect job performance.
* Must have own reliable transportation and the ability to obtain and show proof of insurance.
* Must be available to work a flexible schedule to include nights and weekends in order to meet with children and families.
* Able and willing to work with a diverse client population.
Stress Management: The ability to keep functioning effectively when under pressure and maintain self-control in the face of hostility or provocation.
Flexibility: Openness to different and new ways of doing things; willingness to modify one's preferred way of doing things.
Thoroughness: Ensuring that one's own and others' work and information are complete and accurate; carefully preparing for meetings and presentations; following up with others to ensure that agreements and commitments have been fulfilled.
Attention to Communication: The ability to ensure that information is passed on to others who should be kept informed.
ChildNet is committed to equal employment opportunity for all applicants without regard to race, sex, age, religion, color, disability, national origin or ancestry, citizenship status, genetic information, marital status, veterans status or military service obligation, medical condition, sexual orientation, or gender identity or expression and any other status protected by applicable law. Including Title VII of the Civil Rights Act, Section 504 of the Rehabilitation Act of 1973, the Americans with Disabilities Act, and CFOP 60-10, Chapter 4. ChildNet is also a Drug-Free Workplace (DFWP).
Job Status: Full Time