Permanency Roundtables (PRT) are professional case consultations that provide support to the caseworkers while taking a comprehensive look at the child’s situation and seeking to bust barriers in order to attain legal permanency and increase permanent connections for the child. The 3 goals of each PRT are to: (1) expedite legal permanency for the child, (2) stimulate thinking and learning about ways to accelerate permanency, and (3) identify and address systemic barriers to timely permanency.
During each PRT the following questions are asked: (1) What will it take for this child to achieve permanency? (2) What can we do that has been tried successfully before? (3) What can we do that has never been tried? (4) What can we do concurrently to help this child achieve permanency? and (5) How can we engage the child in permanency planning?
Through implementing the Youth Centered PRT model in Ohio all of these partners expect to see improvements: in the short term, less restrictive living environments for the children, and in the long term, more children moving to permanency before they age out of the system. The project also seeks to address racial disproportionality in child welfare. Just as important, the project supports the ongoing philosophical shift in Ohio to ensure that every child attains permanent connections – whether it be successful reunification with a birth family, permanent placement with kin, or adoption – before having to emancipate. The emphasis on instilling the values of permanency not just in agency staff but also in judicial partners, providers, and foster caregivers is designed to bring together multiple systems in support of permanency for Ohio youth.