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SB-12 Foster youth: postsecondary education: financial aid assistance.(2017-2018)

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Date Published: 07/13/2017 09:00 PM
SB12:v94#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Assembly  July 13, 2017
Amended  IN  Assembly  June 29, 2017
Amended  IN  Assembly  June 19, 2017
Amended  IN  Senate  April 27, 2017
Amended  IN  Senate  March 22, 2017

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2017–2018 REGULAR SESSION

Senate Bill No. 12


Introduced by Senator Beall

December 05, 2016


An act to amend Sections 79220, 79221, and 79226 of, and to add Section 69516 to, the Education Code, and to amend Section 16501.1 of the Welfare and Institutions Code, relating to foster youth.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


SB 12, as amended, Beall. Foster youth: postsecondary education: financial aid assistance.
(1) Existing law establishes the Student Aid Commission as the primary state agency for the administration of state-authorized student financial aid programs available to students attending all segments of postsecondary education. Under existing law, the commission, among other things, administers the Cal Grant Program, the Student Opportunity and Access Program, the Assumption Program of Loans for Education, the Graduate Assumption Program of Loans for Education, the Public Interest Attorney Loan Repayment Program, and the California State Work-Study Program. The commission also oversees the state’s participation in the Federal Family Education Loan Program. Existing law authorizes the commission to enter into an agreement with a public agency of a state other than California, or a private entity related to an agency of another state, to assist the other agency or entity in implementing financial aid programs, including assistance with processing grants, fellowships, and loans through the use of automated information systems.
This bill would require the Student Aid Commission to work cooperatively with the State Department of Social Services to develop an automated system to verify a student’s status as a foster youth to aid in the processing of applications for federal financial aid.
(2) Existing law, the Cooperating Agencies Foster Youth Educational Support Program, authorizes the Office of the Chancellor of the California Community Colleges to enter into agreements with up to 10 community college districts to provide additional funds for services in support of postsecondary education for foster youth. Existing law provides that these services include, when appropriate, but are not necessarily limited to, outreach and recruitment, service coordination, counseling, book and supply grants, tutoring, independent living and financial literacy skills support, frequent in-person contact, career guidance, transfer counseling, child care and transportation assistance, and referrals to health services, mental health services, housing assistance, and other related services. Existing law requires, if more than 10 community college districts apply for funding, the board of governors to give priority to those districts with the higher number of eligible students. Existing law provides that the program is operative in a fiscal year only if funds have been appropriated for purposes of the program for that fiscal year. Existing law requires the board of governors to submit a biennial report, commencing March 31, 2018, and every 2 years thereafter, providing proscribed information, including recommendations on whether and how the program can be expanded to all community college districts and campuses.
This bill would expand that authorization from up to 10 community college districts to up to 20 community college districts, and would make conforming changes to other provisions of the program. The bill would delay the commencement date of the board of governors’ biennial report to March 31, 2019. 2020.
(3) Existing law requires a county social worker to create a case plan for foster youth within a specified timeframe after the child is introduced into the foster care system. Existing law requires the case plan to be developed considering the recommendations of the child and family team according to specified requirements, including, among others, a requirement that the child be involved in developing the case plan as age and developmentally appropriate.
This bill would require the case plan, for a child who is 16 years of age or older and for a nonminor dependent, to identify the person or persons who are responsible for assisting the child or nonminor dependent with applications for postsecondary education and related financial aid, except as provided. By expanding the duties of counties relating to the development of a case plan for foster youth, this bill would impose a state-mandated local program.
(4) The California Constitution requires the state to reimburse local agencies and school districts for certain costs mandated by the state. Statutory provisions establish procedures for making that reimbursement.
This bill would provide that no reimbursement is required by this act for a specified reason.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: YES  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 Section 69516 is added to the Education Code, to read:

69516.
 The commission shall work cooperatively with the State Department of Social Services to develop an automated system to verify a student’s status as a foster youth to aid in the processing of applications for federal financial aid.

SEC. 2.

 Section 79220 of the Education Code is amended to read:

79220.
 The Office of the Chancellor of the California Community Colleges Chancellor’s Office may enter into agreements with up to 20 community college districts to provide additional funds for services in support of postsecondary education for foster youth. This program shall be known as the Cooperating Agencies Foster Youth Educational Support Program, and shall expand the number of students participating in the Community College Extended Opportunity Programs and Services and shall not displace other students. The funding provided pursuant to this article shall be separate and apart from the funding provided under existing cooperative agencies resources for education programs pursuant to Article 4 (commencing with Section 79150). In addition to the delivery of Student Success and Support Program services, as defined in Section 78212, services shall include, when appropriate, but not necessarily be limited to, outreach and recruitment, service coordination, counseling, book and supply grants, tutoring, independent living and financial literacy skills support, frequent in-person contact, career guidance, transfer counseling, child care and transportation assistance, and referrals to health services, mental health services, housing assistance, and other related services.

SEC. 3.

 Section 79221 of the Education Code is amended to read:

79221.
 (a) A community college district that wishes to participate in this program shall apply to the board of governors for funding pursuant to this article. The application of each participating community college district shall provide the estimated number of foster youth who will be served. The application shall also describe the extent of cooperation between the local county child welfare department, the county probation department, the local educational opportunity programs and services program, and the district to ensure that services provided under this article to eligible youth are coordinated with, and do not supplant, other services provided by the county and state.
(b) If more than 20 community college districts apply for funding under the program, the board of governors shall give priority to those districts with the higher number of eligible students.

SEC. 4.

 Section 79226 of the Education Code is amended to read:

79226.
 Notwithstanding Section 10231.5 of the Government Code, commencing March 31, 2019, 2020, and every two years thereafter, the board of governors shall submit a report to the Governor, the education policy committees of the Legislature, and the California Child Welfare Council describing its efforts to serve students who are current and former foster youth. These biennial reports shall also include a review on a campus-by-campus basis of the enrollment, retention, transfer, and completion rates of foster youth, including categorical funding of those programs. The reports shall also include recommendations on whether and how the program under this article can be expanded to all community college districts and campuses.

SEC. 5.Section 16501.1 of the Welfare and Institutions Code, as amended by Section 2.3 of Chapter 851 of the Statutes of 2016, is amended to read:
16501.1.

(a)(1)The Legislature finds and declares that the foundation and central unifying tool in child welfare services is the case plan.

(2)The Legislature further finds and declares that a case plan ensures that the child receives protection and safe and proper care and case management, and that services are provided to the child and parents or other caretakers, as appropriate, in order to improve conditions in the parent’s home, to facilitate the safe return of the child to a safe home or the permanent placement of the child, and to address the needs of the child while in foster care.

(3)The agency shall consider the recommendations of the child and family team, as defined in Section 16501, if any are available. The agency shall document the rationale for any inconsistencies between the case plan and the child and family team recommendations.

(b)(1)A case plan shall be based upon the principles of this section and the input from the child and family team.

(2)The case plan shall document that a preplacement assessment of the service needs of the child and family, and preplacement preventive services, have been provided, and that reasonable efforts to prevent out-of-home placement have been made. Preplacement services may include intensive mental health services in the home or a community setting and the reasonable efforts made to prevent out-of-home placement.

(3)In determining the reasonable services to be offered or provided, the child’s health and safety shall be the paramount concerns.

(4)Upon a determination pursuant to paragraph (1) of subdivision (e) of Section 361.5 that reasonable services will be offered to a parent who is incarcerated in a county jail or state prison, detained by the United States Department of Homeland Security, or deported to his or her country of origin, the case plan shall include information, to the extent possible, about a parent’s incarceration in a county jail or the state prison, detention by the United States Department of Homeland Security, or deportation during the time that a minor child of that parent is involved in dependency care.

(5)Reasonable services shall be offered or provided to make it possible for a child to return to a safe home environment, unless, pursuant to subdivisions (b) and (e) of Section 361.5, the court determines that reunification services shall not be provided.

(6)If reasonable services are not ordered, or are terminated, reasonable efforts shall be made to place the child in a timely manner in accordance with the permanent plan and to complete all steps necessary to finalize the permanent placement of the child.

(c)If out-of-home placement is used to attain case plan goals, the case plan shall consider the recommendations of the child and family team.

(d)(1)The case plan shall include a description of the type of home or institution in which the child is to be placed, and the reasons for that placement decision. The decision regarding choice of placement shall be based upon selection of a safe setting that is the least restrictive family setting that promotes normal childhood experiences and the most appropriate setting that meets the child’s individual needs and is available, in proximity to the parent’s home, in proximity to the child’s school, and consistent with the selection of the environment best suited to meet the child’s special needs and best interests. The selection shall consider, in order of priority, placement with relatives, nonrelated extended family members, and tribal members; foster family homes, resource families, and nontreatment certified homes of foster family agencies; followed by treatment and intensive treatment certified homes of foster family agencies; or multidimensional treatment foster care homes or therapeutic foster care homes; group care placements in the order of short-term residential therapeutic programs, group homes, community treatment facilities, and out-of-state residential treatment pursuant to Part 5 (commencing with Section 7900) of Division 12 of the Family Code.

(2)If a short-term residential therapeutic program placement is selected for a child, the case plan shall indicate the needs of the child that necessitate this placement, the plan for transitioning the child to a less restrictive environment, and the projected timeline by which the child will be transitioned to a less restrictive environment. This section of the case plan shall be reviewed and updated at least semiannually.

(A)The case plan for placements in a group home, or commencing January 1, 2017, in a short-term residential therapeutic program, shall indicate that the county has taken into consideration Section 16010.8.

(B)After January 1, 2017, a child and family team meeting as described in Section 16501 shall be convened by the county placing agency for the purpose of identifying the supports and services needed to achieve permanency and enable the child or youth to be placed in the least restrictive family setting that promotes normal childhood experiences.

(3)On or after January 1, 2012, for a nonminor dependent, as defined in subdivision (v) of Section 11400, who is receiving AFDC-FC benefits and who is up to 21 years of age pursuant to Section 11403, in addition to the above requirements, the selection of the placement, including a supervised independent living placement, as described in subdivision (w) of Section 11400, shall also be based upon the developmental needs of young adults by providing opportunities to have incremental responsibilities that prepare a nonminor dependent to transition to successful adulthood. If admission to, or continuation in, a group home or short-term residential therapeutic program placement is being considered for a nonminor dependent, the group home or short-term residential therapeutic program placement approval decision shall include a youth-driven, team-based case planning process, as defined by the department, in consultation with stakeholders. The case plan shall consider the full range of placement options, and shall specify why admission to, or continuation in, a group home placement is the best alternative available at the time to meet the special needs or well-being of the nonminor dependent, and how the placement will contribute to the nonminor dependent’s transition to successful adulthood. The case plan shall specify the treatment strategies that will be used to prepare the nonminor dependent for discharge to a less restrictive family setting that promotes normal childhood experiences, including a target date for discharge from the group home placement. The placement shall be reviewed and updated on a regular, periodic basis to ensure that continuation in the group home placement remains in the best interests of the nonminor dependent and that progress is being made in achieving case plan goals leading to successful adulthood. The group home placement planning process shall begin as soon as it becomes clear to the county welfare department or probation office that a foster child in group home placement is likely to remain in group home placement on his or her 18th birthday, in order to expedite the transition to a less restrictive family setting that promotes normal childhood experiences, if he or she becomes a nonminor dependent. The case planning process shall include informing the youth of all of his or her options, including, but not limited to, admission to or continuation in a group home placement. Consideration for continuation of existing group home placement for a nonminor dependent under 19 years of age may include the need to stay in the same placement in order to complete high school. After a nonminor dependent either completes high school or attains his or her 19th birthday, whichever is earlier, continuation in or admission to a group home placement is prohibited unless the nonminor dependent satisfies the conditions of paragraph (5) of subdivision (b) of Section 11403, and group home placement functions as a short-term transition to the appropriate system of care. Treatment services provided by the group home placement to the nonminor dependent to alleviate or ameliorate the medical condition, as described in paragraph (5) of subdivision (b) of Section 11403, shall not constitute the sole basis to disqualify a nonminor dependent from the group home placement.

(4)In addition to the requirements of paragraphs (1) to (3), inclusive, and taking into account other statutory considerations regarding placement, the selection of the most appropriate home that will meet the child’s special needs and best interests shall also promote educational stability by taking into consideration proximity to the child’s school of origin, and school attendance area, the number of school transfers the child has previously experienced, and the child’s school matriculation schedule, in addition to other indicators of educational stability that the Legislature hereby encourages the State Department of Social Services and the State Department of Education to develop.

(e)A written case plan shall be completed within a maximum of 60 days of the initial removal of the child or of the in-person response required under subdivision (f) of Section 16501 if the child has not been removed from his or her home, or by the date of the dispositional hearing pursuant to Section 358, whichever occurs first. The case plan shall be updated, as the service needs of the child and family dictate. At a minimum, the case plan shall be updated in conjunction with each status review hearing conducted pursuant to Sections 364, 366, 366.3, and 366.31, and the hearing conducted pursuant to Section 366.26, but no less frequently than once every six months. Each updated case plan shall include a description of the services that have been provided to the child under the plan and an evaluation of the appropriateness and effectiveness of those services.

(1)It is the intent of the Legislature that extending the maximum time available for preparing a written case plan from 30 to 60 days will afford caseworkers time to actively engage families, and to solicit and integrate into the case plan the input of the child and the child’s family, as well as the input of relatives and other interested parties.

(2)The extension of the maximum time available for preparing a written case plan from 30 to 60 days shall be effective 90 days after the date that the department gives counties written notice that necessary changes have been made to the Child Welfare Services/Case Management System (CWS/CMS) to account for the 60-day timeframe for preparing a written case plan.

(f)The child welfare services case plan shall be comprehensive enough to meet the juvenile court dependency proceedings requirements pursuant to Article 6 (commencing with Section 300) of Chapter 2 of Part 1 of Division 2.

(g)The case plan shall be developed considering the recommendations of the child and family team, as follows:

(1)The case plan shall be based upon an assessment of the circumstances that required child welfare services intervention. The child shall be involved in developing the case plan as age and developmentally appropriate.

(2)The case plan shall identify specific goals and the appropriateness of the planned services in meeting those goals.

(3)The case plan shall identify the original allegations of abuse or neglect, as defined in Article 2.5 (commencing with Section 11164) of Chapter 2 of Title 1 of Part 4 of the Penal Code, or the conditions cited as the basis for declaring the child a dependent of the court pursuant to Section 300, or all of these, and the other precipitating incidents that led to child welfare services intervention.

(4)The case plan shall include a description of the schedule of the placement agency contacts with the child and the family or other caretakers. The frequency of these contacts shall be in accordance with regulations adopted by the State Department of Social Services. If the child has been placed in foster care out of state, the county social worker or probation officer, or a social worker or probation officer on the staff of the agency in the state in which the child has been placed, shall visit the child in a foster family home or the home of a relative, consistent with federal law and in accordance with the department’s approved state plan. For children in out-of-state group home facilities, visits shall be conducted at least monthly, pursuant to Section 16516.5. At least once every six months, at the time of a regularly scheduled placement agency contact with the foster child, and at each placement change, the child’s social worker or probation officer shall inform the child, the care provider, and the child and family team, if applicable, of the child’s rights as a foster child, as specified in Section 16001.9, and shall provide a written copy of the rights to the child as part of the explanation. The social worker or probation officer shall provide the information to the child in a manner appropriate to the age or developmental level of the child. The social worker or probation officer shall document in the case plan that he or she has informed the child of, and has provided the child with a written copy of, his or her rights.

(5)(A)When out-of-home services are used, the frequency of contact between the natural parents or legal guardians and the child shall be specified in the case plan. The frequency of those contacts shall reflect overall case goals, and consider other principles outlined in this section.

(B)Information regarding any court-ordered visitation between the child and the natural parents or legal guardians, and the terms and conditions needed to facilitate the visits while protecting the safety of the child, shall be provided to the child’s out-of-home caregiver as soon as possible after the court order is made.

(6)When out-of-home placement is made, the case plan shall include provisions for the development and maintenance of sibling relationships as specified in subdivisions (b), (c), and (d) of Section 16002. If appropriate, when siblings who are dependents of the juvenile court are not placed together, the social worker for each child, if different, shall communicate with each of the other social workers and ensure that the child’s siblings are informed of significant life events that occur within their extended family. Unless it has been determined that it is inappropriate in a particular case to keep siblings informed of significant life events that occur within the extended family, the social worker shall determine the appropriate means and setting for disclosure of this information to the child commensurate with the child’s age and emotional well-being. These significant life events shall include, but shall not be limited to, the following:

(A)The death of an immediate relative.

(B)The birth of a sibling.

(C)Significant changes regarding a dependent child, unless the child objects to the sharing of the information with his or her siblings, including changes in placement, major medical or mental health diagnoses, treatments, or hospitalizations, arrests, and changes in the permanent plan.

(7)If out-of-home placement is made in a foster family home, group home, or other child care institution that is either a substantial distance from the home of the child’s parent or out of state, the case plan shall specify the reasons why that placement is in the best interest of the child. When an out-of-state group home placement is recommended or made, the case plan shall, in addition, specify compliance with Section 7911.1 of the Family Code.

(8)A case plan shall ensure the educational stability of the child while in foster care and shall include both of the following:

(A)An assurance that the placement takes into account the appropriateness of the current educational setting and the proximity to the school in which the child is enrolled at the time of placement.

(B)An assurance that the placement agency has coordinated with the person holding the right to make educational decisions for the child and appropriate local educational agencies to ensure that the child remains in the school in which the child is enrolled at the time of placement or, if remaining in that school is not in the best interests of the child, assurances by the placement agency and the local educational agency to provide immediate and appropriate enrollment in a new school and to provide all of the child’s educational records to the new school.

(9)(A)If out-of-home services are used, or if parental rights have been terminated and the case plan is placement for adoption, the case plan shall include a recommendation regarding the appropriateness of unsupervised visitation between the child and any of the child’s siblings. This recommendation shall include a statement regarding the child’s and the siblings’ willingness to participate in unsupervised visitation. If the case plan includes a recommendation for unsupervised sibling visitation, the plan shall also note that information necessary to accomplish this visitation has been provided to the child or to the child’s siblings.

(B)Information regarding the schedule and frequency of the visits between the child and siblings, as well as any court-ordered terms and conditions needed to facilitate the visits while protecting the safety of the child, shall be provided to the child’s out-of-home caregiver as soon as possible after the court order is made.

(10)If out-of-home services are used and the goal is reunification, the case plan shall describe the services to be provided to assist in reunification and the services to be provided concurrently to achieve legal permanency if efforts to reunify fail. The plan shall also consider in-state and out-of-state placements, the importance of developing and maintaining sibling relationships pursuant to Section 16002, and the desire and willingness of the caregiver to provide legal permanency for the child if reunification is unsuccessful.

(11)If out-of-home services are used, the child has been in care for at least 12 months, and the goal is not adoptive placement, the case plan shall include documentation of the compelling reason or reasons why termination of parental rights is not in the child’s best interest. A determination completed or updated within the past 12 months by the department when it is acting as an adoption agency or by a licensed adoption agency that it is unlikely that the child will be adopted, or that one of the conditions described in paragraph (1) of subdivision (c) of Section 366.26 applies, shall be deemed a compelling reason.

(12)(A)Parents and legal guardians shall have an opportunity to review the case plan, and to sign it whenever possible, and then shall receive a copy of the plan. In a voluntary service or placement agreement, the parents or legal guardians shall be required to review and sign the case plan. Whenever possible, parents and legal guardians shall participate in the development of the case plan. Commencing January 1, 2012, for nonminor dependents, as defined in subdivision (v) of Section 11400, who are receiving AFDC-FC or CalWORKs assistance and who are up to 21 years of age pursuant to Section 11403, the transitional independent living case plan, as set forth in subdivision (y) of Section 11400, shall be developed with, and signed by, the nonminor.

(B)Parents and legal guardians shall be advised that, pursuant to Section 1228.1 of the Evidence Code, neither their signature on the child welfare services case plan nor their acceptance of any services prescribed in the child welfare services case plan shall constitute an admission of guilt or be used as evidence against the parent or legal guardian in a court of law. However, they shall also be advised that the parent’s or guardian’s failure to cooperate, except for good cause, in the provision of services specified in the child welfare services case plan may be used in any hearing held pursuant to Section 366.21, 366.22, or 366.25 of this code as evidence.

(13)A child shall be given a meaningful opportunity to participate in the development of the case plan and state his or her preference for foster care placement. A child who is 12 years of age or older and in a permanent placement shall also be given the opportunity to review the case plan, sign the case plan, and receive a copy of the case plan.

(14)The case plan shall be included in the court report, and shall be considered by the court at the initial hearing and each review hearing. Modifications to the case plan made during the period between review hearings need not be approved by the court if the casework supervisor for that case determines that the modifications further the goals of the plan. If out-of-home services are used with the goal of family reunification, the case plan shall consider and describe the application of subdivision (b) of Section 11203.

(15)(A)If the case plan has as its goal for the child a permanent plan of adoption or legal guardianship, it shall include a statement of the child’s wishes regarding their permanent placement plan and an assessment of those stated wishes. The agency shall also include documentation of the steps the agency is taking to find an adoptive family or other permanent living arrangements for the child; to place the child with an adoptive family, an appropriate and willing relative, or a legal guardian, and to finalize the adoption or legal guardianship. At a minimum, the documentation shall include child-specific recruitment efforts, such as the use of state, regional, and national adoption exchanges, including electronic exchange systems, when the child has been freed for adoption. Regardless of whether the child has been freed for adoption, documentation shall include a description of any barriers to achieving legal permanence and the steps the agency will take to address those barriers. If the plan is for kinship guardianship, the case plan shall document how the child meets the kinship guardianship eligibility requirements.

(B)When the child is 16 years of age or older and is in another planned permanent living arrangement, the case plan shall identify the intensive and ongoing efforts to return the child to the home of the parent, place the child for adoption, place the child for tribal customary adoption in the case of an Indian child, establish a legal guardianship, or place the child nonminor dependent with a fit and willing relative, as appropriate. Efforts shall include the use of technology, including social media, to find biological family members of the child.

(16)(A)(i)For a child who is 14 or 15 years of age, the case plan shall include a written description of the programs and services that will help the child, consistent with the child’s best interests, to prepare for the transition from foster care to successful adulthood. The description may be included in the document described in subparagraph (A) of paragraph (18).

(ii)When appropriate, for a child who is 16 years of age or older and, commencing January 1, 2012, for a nonminor dependent, the case plan shall include the transitional independent living plan (TILP), a written description of the programs and services that will help the child, consistent with the child’s best interests, to prepare for the transition from foster care to successful adulthood, and, in addition, whether the youth has an in-progress application pending for Title XVI Supplemental Security Income benefits or for Special Immigrant Juvenile Status or other applicable application for legal residency and an active dependency case is required for that application. When appropriate, for a nonminor dependent, the transitional independent living case plan, as described in subdivision (y) of Section 11400, shall include the TILP, a written description of the programs and services that will help the nonminor dependent, consistent with his or her best interests, to prepare for transition from foster care and assist the youth in meeting the eligibility criteria set forth in paragraphs (1) to (5), inclusive, of subdivision (b) of Section 11403. If applicable, the case plan shall describe the individualized supervision provided in the supervised independent living placement as defined in subdivision (w) of Section 11400. The case plan shall be developed with the child or nonminor dependent and individuals identified as important to the child or nonminor dependent, and shall include steps the agency is taking to ensure that the child or nonminor dependent achieves permanence, including maintaining or obtaining permanent connections to caring and committed adults.

(B)During the 90-day period prior to the participant attaining 18 years of age or older as the state may elect under Section 475(8)(B)(iii) of the federal Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. Sec. 675(8)(B)(iii)), whether during that period foster care maintenance payments are being made on the child’s behalf or the child is receiving benefits or services under Section 477 of the federal Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. Sec. 677), a caseworker or other appropriate agency staff or probation officer and other representatives of the participant, as appropriate, shall provide the youth or nonminor dependent with assistance and support in developing the written 90-day transition plan, that is personalized at the direction of the child, information as detailed as the participant elects that shall include, but not be limited to, options regarding housing, health insurance, education, local opportunities for mentors and continuing support services, and workforce supports and employment services, a power of attorney for health care, and information regarding the advance health care directive form. Information provided regarding health insurance options shall include verification that the eligible youth or nonminor dependent is enrolled in Medi-Cal and a description of the steps that have been or will be taken by the youth’s social worker or probation officer to ensure that the eligible youth or nonminor dependent is transitioned into the Medi-Cal program for former foster youth upon case closure with no interruption in coverage and with no new application being required, as provided in Section 14005.28.

(C)For youth 14 years of age or older, the case plan shall include documentation that a consumer credit report was requested annually from each of the three major credit reporting agencies at no charge to the youth and that any results were provided to the youth. For nonminor dependents, the case plan shall include documentation that the county assisted the nonminor dependent in obtaining his or her reports. The case plan shall include documentation of barriers, if any, to obtaining the credit reports. If the consumer credit report reveals any accounts, the case plan shall detail how the county ensured the youth received assistance with interpreting the credit report and resolving any inaccuracies, including any referrals made for the assistance.

(17)For youth 14 years of age or older and nonminor dependents, the case plan shall be developed in consultation with the youth. At the youth’s option, the consultation may include up to two members of the case planning team who are chosen by the youth and who are not foster parents of, or caseworkers for, the youth. The agency, at any time, may reject an individual selected by the youth to be a member of the case planning team if the agency has good cause to believe that the individual would not act in the youth’s best interest. One individual selected by the youth to be a member of the case planning team may be designated to be the youth’s adviser and advocate with respect to the application of the reasonable and prudent parent standard to the youth, as necessary.

(18)For youth in foster care 14 years of age and older and nonminor dependents, the case plan shall include both of the following:

(A)A document that describes the youth’s rights with respect to education, health, visitation, and court participation, the right to be annually provided with copies of his or her credit reports at no cost while in foster care pursuant to Section 10618.6, and the right to stay safe and avoid exploitation.

(B)A signed acknowledgment by the youth that he or she has been provided a copy of the document and that the rights described in the document have been explained to the youth in an age-appropriate manner.

(19)The case plan for a child or nonminor dependent who is, or who is at risk of becoming, the victim of commercial sexual exploitation, shall document the services provided to address that issue.

(20)For a child who is 16 years of age or older and for a nonminor dependent, the case plan shall identify the person or persons, who may include the child’s high school counselor, Court Appointed Special Advocate, guardian, or other adult, who shall be responsible for assisting the child or nonminor dependent with applications for postsecondary education and related financial aid, unless the child or nonminor dependent states that he or she does not want to pursue postsecondary education, including career or technical education. If, at any point in the future, the child or nonminor dependent expresses that he or she wishes to pursue postsecondary education, the case plan shall be updated to identify an adult individual responsible for assisting the child or nonminor dependent with applications for postsecondary education and related financial aid.

(h)If the court finds, after considering the case plan, that unsupervised sibling visitation is appropriate and has been consented to, the court shall order that the child or the child’s siblings, the child’s current caregiver, and the child’s prospective adoptive parents, if applicable, be provided with information necessary to accomplish this visitation. This section does not require or prohibit the social worker’s facilitation, transportation, or supervision of visits between the child and his or her siblings.

(i)The case plan documentation on sibling placements required under this section shall not require modification of existing case plan forms until the Child Welfare Services/Case Management System (CWS/CMS) is implemented on a statewide basis.

(j)When a child is 10 years of age or older and has been in out-of-home placement for six months or longer, the case plan shall include an identification of individuals, other than the child’s siblings, who are important to the child and actions necessary to maintain the child’s relationship with those individuals, provided that those relationships are in the best interest of the child. The social worker or probation officer shall ask every child who is 10 years of age or older and who has been in out-of-home placement for six months or longer to identify individuals other than the child’s siblings who are important to the child, and may ask any other child to provide that information, or may seek that information from the child and family team, as appropriate. The social worker or probation officer shall make efforts to identify other individuals who are important to the child, consistent with the child’s best interests.

(k)The child’s caregiver shall be provided a copy of a plan outlining the child’s needs and services. The nonminor dependent’s caregiver shall be provided with a copy of the nonminor’s TILP.

(l)Each county shall ensure that the total number of visits made by caseworkers on a monthly basis to children in foster care during a federal fiscal year is not less than 95 percent of the total number of those visits that would occur if each child were visited once every month while in care and that the majority of the visits occur in the residence of the child. The county child welfare and probation departments shall comply with data reporting requirements that the department deems necessary to comply with the federal Child and Family Services Improvement Act of 2006 (Public Law 109-288) and the federal Child and Family Services Improvement and Innovation Act (Public Law 112-34).

(m)The implementation and operation of the amendments to subdivision (i) enacted at the 2005–06 Regular Session shall be subject to appropriation through the budget process and by phase, as provided in Section 366.35.

SEC. 5.

 Section 16501.1 of the Welfare and Institutions Code, as amended by Section 49 of Chapter 24 of the Statutes of 2017, is amended to read:

16501.1.
 (a) (1) The Legislature finds and declares that the foundation and central unifying tool in child welfare services is the case plan.
(2) The Legislature further finds and declares that a case plan ensures that the child receives protection and safe and proper care and case management, and that services are provided to the child and parents or other caretakers, as appropriate, in order to improve conditions in the parent’s home, to facilitate the safe return of the child to a safe home or the permanent placement of the child, and to address the needs of the child while in foster care.
(3) The agency shall consider the recommendations of the child and family team, as defined in Section 16501, if any are available. The agency shall document the rationale for any inconsistencies between the case plan and the child and family team recommendations.
(b) (1) A case plan shall be based upon the principles of this section and the input from the child and family team.
(2) The case plan shall document that a preplacement assessment of the service needs of the child and family, and preplacement preventive services, have been provided, and that reasonable efforts to prevent out-of-home placement have been made. Preplacement services may include intensive mental health services in the home or a community setting and the reasonable efforts made to prevent out-of-home placement.
(3) In determining the reasonable services to be offered or provided, the child’s health and safety shall be the paramount concerns.
(4) Upon a determination pursuant to paragraph (1) of subdivision (e) of Section 361.5 that reasonable services will be offered to a parent who is incarcerated in a county jail or state prison, detained by the United States Department of Homeland Security, or deported to his or her country of origin, the case plan shall include information, to the extent possible, about a parent’s incarceration in a county jail or the state prison, detention by the United States Department of Homeland Security, or deportation during the time that a minor child of that parent is involved in dependency care.
(5) Reasonable services shall be offered or provided to make it possible for a child to return to a safe home environment, unless, pursuant to subdivisions (b) and (e) of Section 361.5, the court determines that reunification services shall not be provided.
(6) If reasonable services are not ordered, or are terminated, reasonable efforts shall be made to place the child in a timely manner in accordance with the permanent plan and to complete all steps necessary to finalize the permanent placement of the child.
(c) If out-of-home placement is used to attain case plan goals, the case plan shall consider the recommendations of the child and family team.
(d) (1) The case plan shall include a description of the type of home or institution in which the child is to be placed, and the reasons for that placement decision. The decision regarding choice of placement shall be based upon selection of a safe setting that is the least restrictive family setting that promotes normal childhood experiences and the most appropriate setting that meets the child’s individual needs and is available, in proximity to the parent’s home, in proximity to the child’s school, and consistent with the selection of the environment best suited to meet the child’s special needs and best interests. The selection shall consider, in order of priority, placement with relatives, nonrelated extended family members, and tribal members; foster family homes, resource families, and nontreatment certified homes of foster family agencies; followed by treatment and intensive treatment certified homes of foster family agencies; or multidimensional treatment foster care homes or therapeutic foster care homes; group care placements in the order of short-term residential therapeutic programs, group homes, community treatment facilities, and out-of-state residential treatment pursuant to Part 5 (commencing with Section 7900) of Division 12 of the Family Code.
(2) If a short-term residential therapeutic program placement is selected for a child, the case plan shall indicate the needs of the child that necessitate this placement, the plan for transitioning the child to a less restrictive environment, and the projected timeline by which the child will be transitioned to a less restrictive environment. This section of the case plan shall be reviewed and updated at least semiannually.
(A) The case plan for placements in a group home, or commencing January 1, 2017, in a short-term residential therapeutic program, shall indicate that the county has taken into consideration Section 16010.8.
(B) After January 1, 2017, a child and family team meeting as described in Section 16501 shall be convened by the county placing agency for the purpose of identifying the supports and services needed to achieve permanency and enable the child or youth to be placed in the least restrictive family setting that promotes normal childhood experiences.
(3) On or after January 1, 2012, for a nonminor dependent, as defined in subdivision (v) of Section 11400, who is receiving AFDC-FC benefits and who is up to 21 years of age pursuant to Section 11403, in addition to the above requirements, the selection of the placement, including a supervised independent living placement, as described in subdivision (w) of Section 11400, shall also be based upon the developmental needs of young adults by providing opportunities to have incremental responsibilities that prepare a nonminor dependent to transition to successful adulthood. If admission to, or continuation in, a group home or short-term residential therapeutic program placement is being considered for a nonminor dependent, the group home or short-term residential therapeutic program placement approval decision shall include a youth-driven, team-based case planning process, as defined by the department, in consultation with stakeholders. The case plan shall consider the full range of placement options, and shall specify why admission to, or continuation in, a group home placement is the best alternative available at the time to meet the special needs or well-being of the nonminor dependent, and how the placement will contribute to the nonminor dependent’s transition to successful adulthood. The case plan shall specify the treatment strategies that will be used to prepare the nonminor dependent for discharge to a less restrictive family setting that promotes normal childhood experiences, including a target date for discharge from the group home placement. The placement shall be reviewed and updated on a regular, periodic basis to ensure that continuation in the group home placement remains in the best interests of the nonminor dependent and that progress is being made in achieving case plan goals leading to successful adulthood. The group home placement planning process shall begin as soon as it becomes clear to the county welfare department or probation office that a foster child in group home placement is likely to remain in group home placement on his or her 18th birthday, in order to expedite the transition to a less restrictive family setting that promotes normal childhood experiences, if he or she becomes a nonminor dependent. The case planning process shall include informing the youth of all of his or her options, including, but not limited to, admission to or continuation in a group home placement. Consideration for continuation of existing group home placement for a nonminor dependent under 19 years of age may include the need to stay in the same placement in order to complete high school. After a nonminor dependent either completes high school or attains his or her 19th birthday, whichever is earlier, continuation in or admission to a group home placement is prohibited unless the nonminor dependent satisfies the conditions of paragraph (5) of subdivision (b) of Section 11403, and group home placement functions as a short-term transition to the appropriate system of care. Treatment services provided by the group home placement to the nonminor dependent to alleviate or ameliorate the medical condition, as described in paragraph (5) of subdivision (b) of Section 11403, shall not constitute the sole basis to disqualify a nonminor dependent from the group home placement.
(4) In addition to the requirements of paragraphs (1) to (3), inclusive, and taking into account other statutory considerations regarding placement, the selection of the most appropriate home that will meet the child’s special needs and best interests shall also promote educational stability by taking into consideration proximity to the child’s school of origin, and school attendance area, the number of school transfers the child has previously experienced, and the child’s school matriculation schedule, in addition to other indicators of educational stability that the Legislature hereby encourages the State Department of Social Services and the State Department of Education to develop.
(e) A written case plan shall be completed within a maximum of 60 days of the initial removal of the child or of the in-person response required under subdivision (f) of Section 16501 if the child has not been removed from his or her home, or by the date of the dispositional hearing pursuant to Section 358, whichever occurs first. The case plan shall be updated, as the service needs of the child and family dictate. At a minimum, the case plan shall be updated in conjunction with each status review hearing conducted pursuant to Sections 364, 366, 366.3, and 366.31, and the hearing conducted pursuant to Section 366.26, but no less frequently than once every six months. Each updated case plan shall include a description of the services that have been provided to the child under the plan and an evaluation of the appropriateness and effectiveness of those services.
(1) It is the intent of the Legislature that extending the maximum time available for preparing a written case plan from 30 to 60 days will afford caseworkers time to actively engage families, and to solicit and integrate into the case plan the input of the child and the child’s family, as well as the input of relatives and other interested parties.
(2) The extension of the maximum time available for preparing a written case plan from 30 to 60 days shall be effective 90 days after the date that the department gives counties written notice that necessary changes have been made to the Child Welfare Services/Case Management System (CWS/CMS) to account for the 60-day timeframe for preparing a written case plan.
(f) The child welfare services case plan shall be comprehensive enough to meet the juvenile court dependency proceedings requirements pursuant to Article 6 (commencing with Section 300) of Chapter 2 of Part 1 of Division 2.
(g) The case plan shall be developed considering the recommendations of the child and family team, as follows:
(1) The case plan shall be based upon an assessment of the circumstances that required child welfare services intervention. The child shall be involved in developing the case plan as age and developmentally appropriate.
(2) The case plan shall identify specific goals and the appropriateness of the planned services in meeting those goals.
(3) The case plan shall identify the original allegations of abuse or neglect, as defined in Article 2.5 (commencing with Section 11164) of Chapter 2 of Title 1 of Part 4 of the Penal Code, or the conditions cited as the basis for declaring the child a dependent of the court pursuant to Section 300, or all of these, and the other precipitating incidents that led to child welfare services intervention.
(4) The case plan shall include a description of the schedule of the placement agency contacts with the child and the family or other caretakers. The frequency of these contacts shall be in accordance with regulations adopted by the State Department of Social Services. If the child has been placed in foster care out of state, the county social worker or probation officer, or a social worker or probation officer on the staff of the agency in the state in which the child has been placed, shall visit the child in a foster family home or the home of a relative, consistent with federal law and in accordance with the department’s approved state plan. For children in out-of-state group home facilities, visits shall be conducted at least monthly, pursuant to Section 16516.5. At least once every six months, at the time of a regularly scheduled placement agency contact with the foster child, and at each placement change, the child’s social worker or probation officer shall inform the child, the care provider, and the child and family team, if applicable, of the child’s rights as a foster child, as specified in Section 16001.9, and shall provide a written copy of the rights to the child as part of the explanation. The social worker or probation officer shall provide the information to the child in a manner appropriate to the age or developmental level of the child. The social worker or probation officer shall document in the case plan that he or she has informed the child of, and has provided the child with a written copy of, his or her rights.
(5) (A) When out-of-home services are used, the frequency of contact between the natural parents or legal guardians and the child shall be specified in the case plan. The frequency of those contacts shall reflect overall case goals, and consider other principles outlined in this section.
(B) Information regarding any court-ordered visitation between the child and the natural parents or legal guardians, and the terms and conditions needed to facilitate the visits while protecting the safety of the child, shall be provided to the child’s out-of-home caregiver as soon as possible after the court order is made.
(6) When out-of-home placement is made, the case plan shall include provisions for the development and maintenance of sibling relationships as specified in subdivisions (b), (c), and (d) of Section 16002. If appropriate, when siblings who are dependents of the juvenile court are not placed together, the social worker for each child, if different, shall communicate with each of the other social workers and ensure that the child’s siblings are informed of significant life events that occur within their extended family. Unless it has been determined that it is inappropriate in a particular case to keep siblings informed of significant life events that occur within the extended family, the social worker shall determine the appropriate means and setting for disclosure of this information to the child commensurate with the child’s age and emotional well-being. These significant life events shall include, but shall not be limited to, the following:
(A) The death of an immediate relative.
(B) The birth of a sibling.
(C) Significant changes regarding a dependent child, unless the child objects to the sharing of the information with his or her siblings, including changes in placement, major medical or mental health diagnoses, treatments, or hospitalizations, arrests, and changes in the permanent plan.
(7) If out-of-home placement is made in a foster family home, group home, or other child care institution that is either a substantial distance from the home of the child’s parent or out of state, the case plan shall specify the reasons why that placement is in the best interest of the child. When an out-of-state group home placement is recommended or made, the case plan shall, in addition, specify compliance with Section 7911.1 of the Family Code.
(8) A case plan shall ensure the educational stability of the child while in foster care and shall include both of the following:
(A) An assurance that the placement takes into account the appropriateness of the current educational setting and the proximity to the school in which the child is enrolled at the time of placement.
(B) An assurance that the placement agency has coordinated with the person holding the right to make educational decisions for the child and appropriate local educational agencies to ensure that the child remains in the school in which the child is enrolled at the time of placement or, if remaining in that school is not in the best interests of the child, assurances by the placement agency and the local educational agency to provide immediate and appropriate enrollment in a new school and to provide all of the child’s educational records to the new school.
(9) (A) If out-of-home services are used, or if parental rights have been terminated and the case plan is placement for adoption, the case plan shall include a recommendation regarding the appropriateness of unsupervised visitation between the child and any of the child’s siblings. This recommendation shall include a statement regarding the child’s and the siblings’ willingness to participate in unsupervised visitation. If the case plan includes a recommendation for unsupervised sibling visitation, the plan shall also note that information necessary to accomplish this visitation has been provided to the child or to the child’s siblings.
(B) Information regarding the schedule and frequency of the visits between the child and siblings, as well as any court-ordered terms and conditions needed to facilitate the visits while protecting the safety of the child, shall be provided to the child’s out-of-home caregiver as soon as possible after the court order is made.
(10) If out-of-home services are used and the goal is reunification, the case plan shall describe the services to be provided to assist in reunification and the services to be provided concurrently to achieve legal permanency if efforts to reunify fail. The plan shall also consider in-state and out-of-state placements, the importance of developing and maintaining sibling relationships pursuant to Section 16002, and the desire and willingness of the caregiver to provide legal permanency for the child if reunification is unsuccessful.
(11) If out-of-home services are used, the child has been in care for at least 12 months, and the goal is not adoptive placement, the case plan shall include documentation of the compelling reason or reasons why termination of parental rights is not in the child’s best interest. A determination completed or updated within the past 12 months by the department when it is acting as an adoption agency or by a licensed adoption agency that it is unlikely that the child will be adopted, or that one of the conditions described in paragraph (1) of subdivision (c) of Section 366.26 applies, shall be deemed a compelling reason.
(12) (A) Parents and legal guardians shall have an opportunity to review the case plan, and to sign it whenever possible, and then shall receive a copy of the plan. In a voluntary service or placement agreement, the parents or legal guardians shall be required to review and sign the case plan. Whenever possible, parents and legal guardians shall participate in the development of the case plan. Commencing January 1, 2012, for nonminor dependents, as defined in subdivision (v) of Section 11400, who are receiving AFDC-FC or CalWORKs assistance and who are up to 21 years of age pursuant to Section 11403, the transitional independent living case plan, as set forth in subdivision (y) of Section 11400, shall be developed with, and signed by, the nonminor.
(B) Parents and legal guardians shall be advised that, pursuant to Section 1228.1 of the Evidence Code, neither their signature on the child welfare services case plan nor their acceptance of any services prescribed in the child welfare services case plan shall constitute an admission of guilt or be used as evidence against the parent or legal guardian in a court of law. However, they shall also be advised that the parent’s or guardian’s failure to cooperate, except for good cause, in the provision of services specified in the child welfare services case plan may be used in any hearing held pursuant to Section 366.21, 366.22, or 366.25 of this code as evidence.
(13) A child shall be given a meaningful opportunity to participate in the development of the case plan and state his or her preference for foster care placement. A child who is 12 years of age or older and in a permanent placement shall also be given the opportunity to review the case plan, sign the case plan, and receive a copy of the case plan.
(14) The case plan shall be included in the court report report, and shall be considered by the court at the initial hearing and each review hearing. Modifications to the case plan made during the period between review hearings need not be approved by the court if the casework supervisor for that case determines that the modifications further the goals of the plan. If out-of-home services are used with the goal of family reunification, the case plan shall consider and describe the application of subdivision (b) of Section 11203.
(15) (A) If the case plan has as its goal for the child a permanent plan of adoption or legal guardianship, it shall include a statement of the child’s wishes regarding their permanent placement plan and an assessment of those stated wishes. The agency shall also include documentation of the steps the agency is taking to find an adoptive family or other permanent living arrangements for the child; to place the child with an adoptive family, an appropriate and willing relative, or a legal guardian, and to finalize the adoption or legal guardianship. At a minimum, the documentation shall include child-specific recruitment efforts, such as the use of state, regional, and national adoption exchanges, including electronic exchange systems, when the child has been freed for adoption. Regardless of whether the child has been freed for adoption, documentation shall include a description of any barriers to achieving legal permanence and the steps the agency will take to address those barriers. If the plan is for kinship guardianship, the case plan shall document how the child meets the kinship guardianship eligibility requirements.
(B) When the child is 16 years of age or older and is in another planned permanent living arrangement, the case plan shall identify the intensive and ongoing efforts to return the child to the home of the parent, place the child for adoption, place the child for tribal customary adoption in the case of an Indian child, establish a legal guardianship, or place the child nonminor dependent with a fit and willing relative, as appropriate. Efforts shall include the use of technology, including social media, to find biological family members of the child.
(16) (A) (i) For a child who is 14 or 15 years of age, the case plan shall include a written description of the programs and services that will help the child, consistent with the child’s best interests, to prepare for the transition from foster care to successful adulthood. The description may be included in the document described in subparagraph (A) of paragraph (18).
(ii) When appropriate, for a child who is 16 years of age or older and, commencing January 1, 2012, for a nonminor dependent, the case plan shall include the transitional independent living plan (TILP), a written description of the programs and services that will help the child, consistent with the child’s best interests, to prepare for the transition from foster care to successful adulthood, and, in addition, whether the youth has an in-progress application pending for Title XVI Supplemental Security Income benefits or for special immigrant juvenile status or other applicable application for legal residency and an active dependency case is required for that application. When appropriate, for a nonminor dependent, the transitional independent living case plan, as described in subdivision (v) (y) of Section 11400, shall include the TILP, a written description of the programs and services that will help the nonminor dependent, consistent with his or her best interests, to prepare for transition from foster care and assist the youth in meeting the eligibility criteria set forth in paragraphs (1) to (5), inclusive, of subdivision (b) of Section 11403. If applicable, the case plan shall describe the individualized supervision provided in the supervised independent living placement as defined in subdivision (w) of Section 11400. The case plan shall be developed with the child or nonminor dependent and individuals identified as important to the child or nonminor dependent, and shall include steps the agency is taking to ensure that the child or nonminor dependent achieves permanence, including maintaining or obtaining permanent connections to caring and committed adults.
(B) During the 90-day period prior to the participant attaining 18 years of age or older as the state may elect under Section 475(8)(B)(iii) of the federal Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. Sec. 675(8)(B)(iii)), whether during that period foster care maintenance payments are being made on the child’s behalf or the child is receiving benefits or services under Section 477 of the federal Social Security Act (42 U.S.C. Sec. 677), a caseworker or other appropriate agency staff or probation officer and other representatives of the participant, as appropriate, shall provide the youth or nonminor dependent with assistance and support in developing the written 90-day transition plan, that is personalized at the direction of the child, information as detailed as the participant elects that shall include, but not be limited to, options regarding housing, health insurance, education, local opportunities for mentors and continuing support services, and workforce supports and employment services, a power of attorney for health care, and information regarding the advance health care directive form. Information provided regarding health insurance options shall include verification that the eligible youth or nonminor dependent is enrolled in Medi-Cal and a description of the steps that have been or will be taken by the youth’s social worker or probation officer to ensure that the eligible youth or nonminor dependent is transitioned into the Medi-Cal program for former foster youth upon case closure with no interruption in coverage and with no new application being required, as provided in Section 14005.28.
(C) For youth 14 years of age or older, the case plan shall include documentation that a consumer credit report was requested annually from each of the three major credit reporting agencies at no charge to the youth and that any results were provided to the youth. For nonminor dependents, the case plan shall include documentation that the county assisted the nonminor dependent in obtaining his or her reports. The case plan shall include documentation of barriers, if any, to obtaining the credit reports. If the consumer credit report reveals any accounts, the case plan shall detail how the county ensured the youth received assistance with interpreting the credit report and resolving any inaccuracies, including any referrals made for the assistance.
(17) For youth 14 years of age or older and nonminor dependents, the case plan shall be developed in consultation with the youth. At the youth’s option, the consultation may include up to two members of the case planning team who are chosen by the youth and who are not foster parents of, or caseworkers for, the youth. The agency, at any time, may reject an individual selected by the youth to be a member of the case planning team if the agency has good cause to believe that the individual would not act in the youth’s best interest. One individual selected by the youth to be a member of the case planning team may be designated to be the youth’s adviser and advocate with respect to the application of the reasonable and prudent parent standard to the youth, as necessary.
(18) For youth in foster care 14 years of age and older and nonminor dependents, the case plan shall include both of the following:
(A) A document that describes the youth’s rights with respect to education, health, visitation, and court participation, the right to be annually provided with copies of his or her credit reports at no cost while in foster care pursuant to Section 10618.6, and the right to stay safe and avoid exploitation.
(B) A signed acknowledgment by the youth that he or she has been provided a copy of the document and that the rights described in the document have been explained to the youth in an age-appropriate manner.
(19) The case plan for a child or nonminor dependent who is, or who is at risk of becoming, the victim of commercial sexual exploitation, shall document the services provided to address that issue.
(20) For a youth in foster care 10 years of age and older who is in junior high, middle, or high school, or a nonminor dependent enrolled in high school, the case plan shall be reviewed annually, and updated as needed, to indicate that the case management worker has verified that the youth or nonminor dependent received comprehensive sexual health education that meets the requirements established in Chapter 5.6 (commencing with Section 51930) of Part 28 of Division 4 of Title 2 of the Education Code, through the school system. The case plan shall document either of the following:
(A) For a youth in junior high or middle school, either that the youth has already received this instruction during junior high or middle school, or how the county will ensure that the youth receives the instruction at least once before completing junior high or middle school if the youth remains under the jurisdiction of the dependency court during this timeframe.
(B) For a youth or nonminor dependent in high school, either that the youth or nonminor dependent already received this instruction during high school, or how the county will ensure that the youth or nonminor dependent receives the instruction at least once before completing high school if the youth or nonminor dependent remains under the jurisdiction of the dependency court during this timeframe.
(21) (A) For a youth in foster care 10 years of age and older or a nonminor dependent, the case plan shall be updated annually to indicate that the case management worker has done all of the following:
(i) Informed the youth or nonminor dependent that he or she may access age-appropriate, medically accurate information about reproductive and sexual health care, including, but not limited to, unplanned pregnancy prevention, abstinence, use of birth control, abortion, and the prevention and treatment of sexually transmitted infections.
(ii) Informed the youth or nonminor dependent, in an age- and developmentally appropriate manner, of his or her right to consent to sexual and reproductive health services and his or her confidentiality rights regarding those services.
(iii) Informed the youth or nonminor dependent how to access reproductive and sexual health care services and facilitated access to that care, including by assisting with any identified barriers to care, as needed.
(B) This paragraph shall not be construed to affect any applicable confidentiality law.
(22) For a child who is 16 years of age or older and for a nonminor dependent, the case plan shall identify the person or persons, who may include the child’s high school counselor, Court Appointed Special Advocate, guardian, or other adult, who shall be responsible for assisting the child or nonminor dependent with applications for postsecondary education and related financial aid, unless the child or nonminor dependent states that he or she does not want to pursue postsecondary education, including career or technical education. If, at any point in the future, the child or nonminor dependent expresses that he or she wishes to pursue postsecondary education, the case plan shall be updated to identify an adult individual responsible for assisting the child or nonminor dependent with applications for postsecondary education and related financial aid.
(h) If the court finds, after considering the case plan, that unsupervised sibling visitation is appropriate and has been consented to, the court shall order that the child or the child’s siblings, the child’s current caregiver, and the child’s prospective adoptive parents, if applicable, be provided with information necessary to accomplish this visitation. This section does not require or prohibit the social worker’s facilitation, transportation, or supervision of visits between the child and his or her siblings.
(i) The case plan documentation on sibling placements required under this section shall not require modification of existing case plan forms until the Child Welfare Services/Case Management System (CWS/CMS) is implemented on a statewide basis.
(j) When a child is 10 years of age or older and has been in out-of-home placement for six months or longer, the case plan shall include an identification of individuals, other than the child’s siblings, who are important to the child and actions necessary to maintain the child’s relationship with those individuals, provided that those relationships are in the best interest of the child. The social worker or probation officer shall ask every child who is 10 years of age or older and who has been in out-of-home placement for six months or longer to identify individuals other than the child’s siblings who are important to the child, and may ask any other child to provide that information, or may seek that information from the child and family team, as appropriate. The social worker or probation officer shall make efforts to identify other individuals who are important to the child, consistent with the child’s best interests.
(k) The child’s caregiver shall be provided a copy of a plan outlining the child’s needs and services. The nonminor dependent’s caregiver shall be provided with a copy of the nonminor’s TILP.
(l) Each county shall ensure that the total number of visits made by caseworkers on a monthly basis to children in foster care during a federal fiscal year is not less than 95 percent of the total number of those visits that would occur if each child were visited once every month while in care and that the majority of the visits occur in the residence of the child. The county child welfare and probation departments shall comply with data reporting requirements that the department deems necessary to comply with the federal Child and Family Services Improvement Act of 2006 (Public Law 109-288) and the federal Child and Family Services Improvement and Innovation Act (Public Law 112-34).
(m) The implementation and operation of the amendments to subdivision (i) enacted at the 2005–06 Regular Session shall be subject to appropriation through the budget process and by phase, as provided in Section 366.35.

SEC. 6.

 To the extent that this act has an overall effect of increasing the costs already borne by a local agency for programs or levels of service mandated by the 2011 Realignment Legislation within the meaning of Section 36 of Article XIII of the California Constitution, it shall apply to local agencies only to the extent that the state provides annual funding for the cost increase. Any new program or higher level of service provided by a local agency pursuant to this act above the level for which funding has been provided shall not require a subvention of funds by the state or otherwise be subject to Section 6 of Article XIII B of the California Constitution.