Status Summary

SB 6538 did not come out of Senate Rules and therefore is dead.

Legislative Session

2014

Sponsor

Senator Rivers

SB 6538 relates to early education for those children involved in the child welfare system. Among other provisions, the bill specifically addresses changes relating to the Family Assessment Response (FAR) process and directs FAR workers to assess for child safety and child well-being when collaborating with a family to determine the need for child care, preschool, or home visiting services.

Substitute bill:  

SB 6538 directs the family assessment response worker to assess for child safety and child wellbeing when collaborating with a family to determine the need for child care, preschool, or home visiting services.

Effective July 1, 2015, the family assessment response worker may only refer children to preschool programs that are enrolled in the Early Achievers program and rate at a level three,
four, or five unless a delineated circumstance(s) exists.

Effective July 1, 2019, the family assessment response worker must only make child care referrals for nonschool-aged children to licensed child care programs that rate at a level three, four, or five in the Early Achievers program unless a delineated circumstance(s) exists.

The bill goes on to direct the family assessment response worker to make every effort to provide referrals to state and federally subsidized programs such as, but not limited to, licensed child care programs that receive a state subsidy through WCCC; ECEAP; head start programs; and early head start programs.

Further, at least 15 days prior to closing the family assessment response case, the family assessment worker must meet with the child's parent or caregiver to discuss child care and early learning services. If the family plans to use child care or early learning services, the family assessment worker must work with the family to facilitate successful enrollment.

The definition of eligible child is amended to include language regarding children involved in the child welfare system.

As amended by the Senate Ways and Means Committee:  Removes "children involved in the child welfare system" from the definition of eligible child as it relates to ECEAP. Restores the current law definition of "eligible child" and priority services. 

Allows DEL to include in the definition of eligible child, a child who is not otherwise
receiving services under ECEAP and who is either receiving CPS or FAR, subject to the
availability of appropriations specifically for this purpose.

Gives children receiving CPS or FAR services priority services under ECEAP.