Audit of the Implementation of the Child and Family Services Enhanced Prevention Focused Approach - Follow-up Report Status Update as of March 31, 2014

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Action Plan Implementation Status Update Report to the Audit Committee - As of March 31, 2014

ESDPP

Audit of the Implementation of the Child and Family Services Enhanced Prevention Focused Approach
Approval Date: 09/28/2012

Project Recommendations Action Plan Expected
Completion Date
Program Response
1. Ensure that more formal processes be put in place that provide/ demonstrate proper governance, accountability and oversight for initial costing models, accountability frameworks, and actual implementation leading to an overview of expenditures and results. AANDC HQ and Regions should then collaborate with partners in trying to address arising issues. Education and Social Development Programs and Partnerships (ESDPP) will analyze what may be necessary to have within formal tripartite processes and will discuss these needs with relevant stakeholders.

With this information, ESDPP will formalize EPFA processes for:
  1. Establishing initial costing models;
  2. Establishing accountability frameworks;
  3. Regular monitoring of implementation, expenditures and results.
In addition, ESDPP will produce records of EPFA bilateral and tripartite meetings.

ESDPP will organize and host regular conference calls and face-to-face/ videoconference meetings with regional partners to address implementation issues as they arise within specific jurisdictions.
September 2013 Status: Request to Close

Update/rationale:
As of 31/03/2014

ESDPP is developing an accountability plan which will focus on: working with willing partners to update existing tripartite accountability frameworks with those jurisdictions already under the EPFA; ensuring that any new tripartite accountability frameworks are rigorous; developing Bilateral Accountability Frameworks with certain provinces to clarify roles and responsibilities; establish processes for joint compliance activities; and ensure consistent information-sharing such as business plan templates, and business plan guidelines for service providers.

A Service Delivery Agreement between AANDC and the province will be updated for 2014-2015.

The existing tripartite structure in BC (Executive Steering Committee and Technical Working Group) will be used to continue discussions on finalizing a robust tripartite accountability framework and costing model, and on determining a solid service delivery model for prevention in BC.

The bilateral Accountability Framework for CFS is being repositioned to become part of the trilateral discussions on a CFS Engagement Process.

As part of the Quality Assurance Framework, the FNCFS program conducted their first joint compliance review with the Ministry of Social Services on February 12-13, 2014.

SPPB has established a Compliance Working Group to establish common practices, update tools as we move forward with the regional training and review of individual agencies in 2014-2015.

In New Brunswick, work is underway to establish a Tripartite Accountability Framework to clarify roles and responsibilities, as well as establish joint protocols and processes for accountability and information-sharing.

Preliminary discussions with Newfoundland began in Q2 and are ongoing.

Bi-lateral conference calls with regions continue to take place on a regular basis.

Monthly conference calls continue to be held between HQ FNCFS program staff, their regional counterparts, the Social Branch DG and ARDGs on all Branch issues. Records of discussion are kept and shared with all parties.

AES: Recommend to close
2. Ensure that the Program undertakes regular reviews (i.e. annually) of the implementation of EPFA in each jurisdiction that will include an assessment of the costing models and the development of and reporting against business plans both financially and on activity results. Agencies provide the Program with sufficient information with respect to EPFA expenditures against the activities in the Agency business plans. AANDC HQ and Regions should then collaborate with partners in trying to address any arising issues. ESDPP will continue to liaise with regions through monthly conference calls and informal conversations to review financial pressures that may arise during EPFA implementation. These conversations have/will allow HQ to forecast future costing while also allowing HQ and Regions to develop possible mitigation strategies for arising issues.

ESDPP HQ will also begin the process of annually reviewing a sample of Business Plans in order to allow ESDPP to better report against business plans both financially and on results.

In the last quarter of fiscal year 2011/12, ESDPP reviewed the 5-year Business Plan templates and has ensured consistent use of the tool by clarifying that the intent is for recipients to provide annual updates which project ahead 5 years.
September 2013 Status: Request to close
Update/Rationale:
As of September 30, 2013

Bilateral conference calls with regions occur on a regular basis. Monthly conference calls continue to be held between HQ FNCFS program staff and their regional counterparts with the SPPB DG and ARDGs on all Branch issues. Regions and HQ FNCFS continue to review the EPFA costing models to identify options to mitigate future financial pressures.

In 2012-13, ESDPP HQ continued to work with Regions to ensure that the common template outlining criteria required to develop business plans (developed in FY 11-12) was being used consistently across all regions.

AES: Recommend to close.
3. Establish a common set of outcome-based non-financial performance measures and baseline for EPFA. These should be communicated to all Regions and incorporated into Agency business plans. In addition, ensure that the development of the new Information Management system incorporates the ability to track and report on the performance measures and baseline. The program will develop and establish baseline measures of their First Nation Child and Family Services (FNCFS) National Child Welfare Outcomes Matrix indicators by March 31, 2013. March 31, 2013 Status: Request to close
Update/Rationale:
As of September 30, 2013

FNCFS data collection instruments (DCI) have been reduced to one national DCI and one national business plan.  Six outcome-based indicators have been developed for FNCFS that are measurable and reportable. Following release 2 of the First Nation Child and Family Services Information Management System scheduled for April 1, 2014, AANDC will report on the Social Development Performance Measurement Strategy on an annual basis. The review of the Agencies’ business plans involve ensuring that the measures are incorporated.

The system will further enhance the program’s data quality and contribute to evidence-based decision making. In an effort to streamline and reduce the reporting burden, SPPB is working to enter into data sharing agreements with willing provinces and territories.

AES: Recommend to close.
In the annual update on indicators for the approved 2011 Social Development Performance Measurement Strategy, the FNCFS program has identified the data that would be required to support ongoing measurement of the programs. September 2013
4. Review the EPFA administrative structure and distribution of Human Resource needs of both HQ and the Regional Offices in order to determine an optimal and/or practical level of staffing necessary to efficiently administer and manage the EPFA. Headquarters will review the FNCFS administrative structure and distribution of Human Resources needs in consultation with Regional Operations.

ESDPP will develop and update tools, manuals, guidelines, templates, technical interpretation bulletins and information circulars in order to clarify program requirements enhance compliance and reduce reporting burden in the regions. Tools that will be updated include the National Social Programs Manual. Tools now being developed include the Management Control Framework; Integrated Risk Management Framework; a National Handbook on Program Compliance; a DCI Management Framework; and technical interpretation bulletins or information circulars to clarify FNCFS program policy, as required.

Through monthly conference calls and annual face-to-face/videoconference meetings, ESDPP and Regions will continue to support one another in identifying efficiencies in order to help ease the workload burden that has been identified. Minutes from all Headquarters/Regions monthly calls and face-to-face/videoconferences will be produced and shared.

All above documents will help ensure consistent and streamlined processes, serving to alleviate the administrative burden on regional staff.
September 2013 Status: Request to Close

Update/rationale:
As of 31/03/2014

SPPB will be providing its annual update on the 2011 Social Development Performance Measurement Strategy to the Evaluation Performance Measurement and Review Committee on April 25, 2014.

The branch is completing a condensed version of the 2011 Social Development Performance Measurement Strategy, which includes program-specific annexes. Annex B is specific to FNCFS EPFA and will provide information on early results, secondary data sources and updates to indicators.

While all regions received IMS training over the course of this fiscal year, some regions will receive an additional refresher training session. The training related to the IMS reporting solution will not be completed by the end of the fiscal year due to a delay in data entry by some regions. Regions have been asked to enter all data by the end of Q1 of FY14/15, after this report training can begin again.

The Social Programs - National Manual is in the final stages of the approval process and will be available online by Q1 FY 2014-15. An approved copy of the manual can be provided to recipients prior to the online release. The FNCFS section has been revised to better clarify program management requirements.

The policy on exceptional costs related to maintenance funding for EPFA Recipients will be reflected in the Social Programs - National Manual. Another policy on use of funds under FNCFS Program will be finalized in Q1 2014.

Policy development is ongoing and FNCFS program is focussing on the Children Out of Parental Home (COPH), Capital and Children Special Allowance (CSA) at this time.

Bi-lateral conference calls with regions continue to take place on a regular basis.

Monthly conference calls continue to be held between HQ FNCFS program staff, their regional counterparts, the Branch’s DG and ARDGs on all Branch issues. Records of discussion are kept and shared with all parties.

AES: Recommend to close
 
 
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