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Accountability Framework

The Data Center’s Accountability Framework is a methodologically-sound performance measurement system that provides stakeholders with valid and reliable evidence about the performance of their child welfare system. Although its relevance is not limited to states operating under a consent decree, the Accountability Framework does provide the credible evidence needed to document improvements in their systems performance.

The key components of the Data Center’s approach to accountability are:

These components are organized around these four core domains of system measurement:

Learn more about how the Data Center puts the Accountability Framework to work in the field:

The Tennessee Accountability Center

The independent Tennessee Accountability Center, housed at the Center for State Child Welfare Data at Chapin Hall, was established under the terms of the Settlement Agreement in the Brian A. vs. Haslam class action lawsuit.  The mission of the Accountability Center (AC) is two-fold.  First, the AC will provide evidence needed by stakeholders to understand what happens to children when they are placed in foster care in Tennessee.  In turn, stakeholders will understand how the Department of Children’s Services’ efforts to serve children can be reinforced.  Second, the AC, through its work with the Department, will strengthen the systems the Department uses to monitor its performance going forward, beyond the 18-month term of the AC.

The AC was charged with issuing three public reports on the Department’s maintenance of program, policy and practice improvements achieved under the Settlement Agreement.  The focus of each report was negotiated by the parties to the Brian A. lawsuit and each report is organized around the outcome, process, quality, and capacity measures needed to make informed judgments about whether the Department was fulfilling its mandates.  The first report was published on December 12, 2017, the second report was published on May 31, 2018, and the third report was published on December 19, 2018.  Each report is posted below.

Download the third Tennessee Accountability Center report HERE.
Download the second Tennessee Accountability Center report HERE.
Download the first Tennessee Accountability Center report HERE.