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Over half a million children are in foster care or some other kind of out of home placement today. Do these children all really need to be there?
Texas CPS News Archive
Texas News Coverage
Texas won't vie for Race to the Top school aid
Texas will not compete for the new federal "Race to the Top" school aid as it would cost the state more than $3 billion, but it could qualify for $750 million.
Perry, who last year suggested that Texas might consider seceding to end the federal government's interference, bashed the school program for weakening local control.
January 15, 2010
Boy, 4, Chooses Long Locks and Is Suspended From Class
A suburban Dallas school district has suspended a 4-year-old from his prekindergarten class because he wears his hair too long and does not want his parents to cut it.
The boy, Taylor Pugh, says he likes his hair long and curly. But on Monday night, the school board in Mesquite voted unanimously to enforce its ban on Beatles haircuts. School officials say the district's dress code serves to limit distractions in the classroom. No exception could be made for the pint-size rebel.
The New York Times
January 15, 2010
So you want to be in the newspaper
We rarely go a week here at the newspaper without a call from someone wanting a story put in the newspaper. First, we don't have investigative reporters.
We don't become involved in custody disputes, whether between members of a family or between a family and Child Protective Services. The issues in those cases are complex, despite what families say, and could involve us in messy legal complications we can't afford to spend staff or attorney time on.
January 14, 2010
Defense: Man slept as child was killed
JAMAICA BEACH -- An admitted methamphetamine addict testified Monday in a capital murder trial that she had sex with her ex-husband while her grandson was wrapped in a bed sheet and stuffed in a hope chest.
Barbara Ann Bawarsky, 48, implicated her ex-husband, Daniel James Gray, who is on trial and charged with capital murder in the Dec. 22, 2005, beating and asphyxiation death of 4-year-old Kraig Jenkins. Bawarsky's testimony was expected to continue today.
The Galveston County Daily News
January 12, 2010
Grandparents saddened by custody battle
Ninfa and Ubaldo Ochoa are devastated by the thought they may never see their grandson again. The Ochoas filed a petition within Floyd County requesting guardianship of Sean in March 2008.
Their grandson, Sean, who recently turned 3, lives with foster parents who want to adopt him. But the Ochoas believe he would be better off with family. Child Protective Services removed Sean from his mother's care after domestic violence within the family. Sean lived in a foster home for several months. After a home study returned with positive results, Sean came to live with his grandparents in Lockney in September 2007.
Plainview Daily Herald
January 10, 2010
Grapevine mom investigated after children left alone in bitter cold
A mother might face criminal charges after her children, ages 5 and 7, were left unattended at a Grapevine elementary school Thursday morning after temperatures had plunged below freezing.
The mother, who was on her way to work, heard on the car radio that the school was closed, so she went back to get her children. By the time she got there, police were already on scene, Dearing said. The possible charge is "abandoning or endangering a child," which is a state jail felony punishable by up to two years in jail and a $10,000 fine.
January 8, 2010
Texas cops cuff 176 at illegal cockfight
Texas cops arrested 176 people on Saturday at an illegal cockfight around 50 miles northwest of Fort Worth.
Police backed by a helicopter swooped on the property of Roy Dale Saxton, 46, who allegedly charged $20 a head for admission to the event in Poolville. As well as the arrests, around a dozen children aged 5 to 16 were taken into the care of the Child Protective Services.
January 4, 2010
Landing in the hot seat
When Tom Suehs took the helm of the Health and Human Services Commission in September, he inherited a severely backlogged food stamp application system.
Texas, struggling with a recession-related surge in applications, is failing to process them within the 30 days required by the state and federal governments, and responses are now overdue for about 40,000 applicant families. A legal aid group has sued over the problems. Suehs oversees 54,000 employees at five agencies (consolidated in 2004 from 12 agencies) with combined budgets of $30 billion in state and federal dollars.
January 2, 2010
Families of disabled Texans fear an increase in home nursing rates could force them to cut services for their loved ones.
Under Medicaid waiver programs like HCS, disabled Texans can receive care in their own homes, group homes or foster care, as long as the cost of care is no more than double what it would be in a state institution.
The Texas Tribune
December 22, 2009
The Case of Hannah Overton
In Corpus Christi, Texas, where my parents live and worship, the Christian community was rocked two years ago by the shocking conviction of Hannah Overton.
In an outrageous series of events, this gentle thirty-year-old Christ-follower, wife, and homeschooling mother of five was sentenced to life without parole in the death of Andrew Burd, the four-year-old child that she and her husband were adopting from the foster-care system.
November 30, 2009
Free parenting classes on the South Side
Join the Parents' Academy now at Blessed Sacrament Academy to complete parenting classes before the holidays.
If you are looking to meet a requirement for parenting classes, or just want to brush up on the latest techniques for raising a healthy family, Parents' Academy classes meet requirements for Child Protective Services and adult and juvenile probation.
My San Antonio
November 10, 2009
Thousands of kids await adoption in Texas
Data from the Texas Department of Family and Protective Services shows that last year there were 6,375 children waiting to be adopted. Johana Scot is troubled by the numbers.
"The problem is that we take too many kids away from their homes," said Scot, executive director of the Parental Guidance Center. CPS is too quick to remove children from their parents or relatives if social workers suspect abuse or neglect. "Family and Protective Services are very adversarial in their approach," she said. "They say, 'We're going to take your kids away and terminate your parental rights.' They take the kid and ask questions later."
November 3, 2009
State releases final report; says 275 children harmed
A Texas Child Protective Services investigation has found that of the 439 children removed from the Yearning for Zion Ranch in West Texas earlier this year, 275 were abused or neglected.
The final report, released Tuesday, said that 12 girls were victims of sexual abuse because they entered "spiritual marriages" between the ages of 12 and 15. Seven of them have had children, the report said. It also said that 263 other children suffered neglect. But the report does not include specific information on how investigators determined whether each child was abused or neglected, citing confidentiality requirements in state law.
October 25, 2009
St. Peter-St. Joseph Children's Home cares for neglected children
Since 1891, St. Peter-St. Joseph Children's Home has been caring for children needing a home. Started as an orphanage by the Sisters of Charity of Incarnate Word, St. PJ's is currently a home for children who are victims of abuse, neglect and broken homes
Biological parents often get a year to fix problems, and if other relatives are not available to adopt the child, only then can a case worker declare them legally adoptable or available for foster care. St. PJ's no longer does foster care. In 2007, St. PJ's became certified as an adoption program under the Department of Family and Protective Services.
My San Antonio
October 15, 2009
Mother accused of abuse speaks out
A mother accused of depraved indifference for the welfare of her young child has stepped out from behind the curtain with her side of the story, proving there are always two sides to consider.
Franki Hill was arrested two weeks ago after authorities deduced that she not only requested her boyfriend physically discipline her 6-year-old son, but stood by and watched while things grew out of control. Now out on bail and working with Child Protective Services to regain custody of her boy, Hill said it's not all that it seems.
The Bandera Bulletin
October 13, 2009
Suspect in Spring girl's death back in jail
A state district judge on Monday revoked the bond of a man accused of causing the fatal injuries of a 4-year-old Spring girl after he failed to take a court-ordered urine test.
Lucas Coe, 27, and his girlfriend Abigail Young, 33, were both arrested last month, accused of inflicting the injuries that may have resulted in the June 27 death of Young's daughter, Emma Thompson.
September 14, 2009
Alleged Kidnapping Attempt Foiled
A Tyler mother said she is thankful her infant son is safe after two alleged attempts to kidnap the child beginning with a woman dressed in scrubs allegedly walking into her hospital room two weeks ago.
The second attempt occurred this week when a man allegedly showed up at the young woman's home saying he was a caseworker with the Texas Department of Human Services and was taking the child due to an ongoing investigation. Police say Ashley Harris, 19, and Casey Bradford, 19, both of Longview were allegedly working together and have been arrested.
Tyler Morning Telegraph
September 13, 2009
Video Report: Child Protective Service Investigates Itself
HOUSTON -- Child Protective Services is investigating itself. The investigation was prompted by three recent deaths of children that CPS had files on, but did not take action to remove them from their living situation.
On Friday three people were arraigned in the connection with the death of three-year-old David Lee Tijerina. The boy's family had been investigated four times by child protective services, yet the child died anyway. CPS had also investigated a Katy girl's home. She died of a staph infection less than a month later.
KIAH 39 News
September 5, 2009
Video Report: Team to review CPS
The state responds to mounting criticism aimed at Child Protective Services following the deaths of three young children.
CPS first came under fire after four-year-old Emma Thompson. CPS had failed to remove the child from the family's home, even though she had been diagnosed with an STD prior to her death. There was more criticism when it was learned two-month-old Amber MacCurdy died of a staph infection after CPS investigated her family.
ABC Houston Nes
September 5, 2009
Three charged in girl's death
KATY -- The parents and grandmother of a baby girl who died months ago now face criminal charges, accused of neglecting serious injuries that eventually took her life.
Now some children's rights advocates are criticizing Child Protective Services for not intervening before it was too late. Two-year-old Amber MacCurdy died back in April. It's a death that authorities say could have been prevented. CPS officials paid numerous visits to the girl's Katy home before her death.
ABC News 13
September 1, 2009
Man arrested in human trafficking network
MUSKOGEE -- Police have arrested a Kansas man who is accused of helping run a network that brought teenage girls to brothels to perform sex acts.
Ronnie Presley of Wichita is charged with three counts of sex trafficking children and three counts of transporting minors. Presley is one of six defendants who were indicted for running a human-trafficking network that brought teenage girls to Houston.
KSN TV 3
August 28, 2009
Father say he didn't beat son
John Cornelius, the 24-year-old man accused of severely beating and causing bodily injury to his 5-year-old son earlier this month, said Wednesday that he was only guilty of spanking the child.
Cornelius' statements came during a hearing that was held in the Jasper County Courthouse to address where four other children living in the home with Cornelius would stay until a full investigation of the incident is complete.
August 26, 2009
Woman charged with injury to a 4-year-old girl
A 4-year-old girl was recovering Friday after police said her guardian hit the girl so hard that surgeons had to remove half of the child's skull to reduce swelling, according to an arrest affidavit.
Pauline Gonzales, 22, is charged with a first-degree felony of injury to a child from Wednesday's incident. She told police she "slammed her on the ground" after discovering the girl had urinated on a couch, according to the affidavit.
August 15, 2009
Homeschooling seminar to teach how to keep records
One of the most important elements of homeschooling beyond the student's education is how records are kept.
The Baptist Book Store is hosting a Homeschool Record Keeping Seminar from 10 a.m. to noon Aug. 14 to help parents be good record keepers.
August 1, 2009
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