CASA Monthly Reports
We are offering these forms for you to download with the sincere hope that you will fill them in with a word processing program. Filling them in on a typewriter makes us smile, too.
We are happy to accept reports via regular mail, fax, hand delivery or email. If you choose to email them, please do the following:
- email reports (and only reports, please) to firstname.lastname@example.org
- name your files (when you save them on your computer) with your name and the month of the report. A unique name like "Galen Williams April04.doc" keeps reports from getting lost.
Printer Friendly Instructions: This is an HTML document without color or graphics. The same instructions are offered online below.
CASA Report Form 07 for MS Word: This is an MS Word document that makes heavy usage of MS Word tables. If you need assistance using the form, please contact Galen or Pam at 303.440.7059.
CASA Report Form 07 for other word processors: This document is in rich text format and can be used in non-MS Word processors. It will work in MS Word as well.
VFC CASA Report Instructions
CASA reports are:
- due (at the VFC CASA office) the first week of each month;
- an important record of the information you have gathered about your case;
- an important tool for you to use in communicating with your VFC CASA case manager and GAL;
- potentially seen and used as evidence by any party to your case including the caseworker, County Attorney, respondent parents and their attorney(s) and the judge.
CASA reports may be seen by any party to the case, including the respondent parents. With this in mind, be sure your reports are factual and objective. Also, be sure to protect the confidentiality of foster families and the safety of your CASA children. Do not include names or addresses of foster parents (or their children) in the GAL portion of your reports. Do not include addresses of other types of placements in your reports. Do note any changes in placement in the first (VFC CASA) section of the form.
The report form is in two parts. Part one is information that VFC CASA needs to keep track of, but that will not be sent to the GAL. We will not put your telephone number, address, email, or other contact information into the record. If you give it to any party that is your choice.
Part two is information that will be sent to the GAL. Please do not include names or addresses or telephone numbers of foster parents (or their children) in the GAL portion of your reports. Please do not put the child's address in your reports. Respondent parent's names are fine to use.
Following is a section-by-section discussion of the forms.
Case name: please use the case name we give you in your case assignment packet. It may differ from what DHHS calls the case.
Month/Year: remember, this is the month you are reporting on, not the month you write the report. If you are writing about interviews or observations that happened in July, this is your July report. Please limit each report to one month of activity.
CASA name: that's your name.
VFC CASA Case Manager: Please check off the VFC CASA staff person who assigned you your current case.
Hours: hours you spent working on your case. This includes time with children, interviewing other parties, talking on the phone, attending meetings or hearings, driving to or from case activities, writing reports and even going to case progress reviews. It doesn't include continuing education.
Mileage: miles driven to or from case activities. If you itemize on your income taxes you can take a deduction for this mileage.
Out of Pocket Expenses: money you spend on snacks, activities, or gifts. Not gas.
Child in new placement: only indicate change in placement if you haven't told us before. We really need to keep track of when children move and in which cities children are living. Write one of the listed types of placement in "Type of Placement."
Casino Gaming impact: Please describe any connection this case has to Blackhawk and/or Central City casino gaming.
Court Hearings in the month covered in this report: This refers to hearings in a courtroom at the Justice Center. Remember you are reporting on one month. If any hearings occurred in that month, please indicate so here. Please check one (occasionally 2) of the boxes for hearing type. If you aren't sure, this is a great time to learn. You can ask the GAL or caseworker, or refer to your manual to review what occurs at each type of hearing. Outcome means what happened at the hearing. Was the treatment plan put into effect? Were the children returned home? Was a review set for a future date?
I have a new telephone number (address, email) should be self-explanatory. Please only indicate changes here.
Comments for Case Manager gives you space to let us (VFC CASA) know things you feel we need to know. If you are having difficulties at any time, please call us! You can also make a note here. Please put information about the progress of your case in the second section (CASA Monthly Report to GAL) of your report.
Mentor: let us know (briefly) what you talk with your mentor about.
Case Mgr Please Call Me! Check this if you want your case manager to call you. Let us know the best telephone number and times (and days) to call.
The CASA monthly report to GAL
CASA name: that's still your name.
GAL: The GAL's name (it's printed on your master fact sheet that you receive at your case assignment if you need to check spelling).
Case Name and Case Number: again, please use what is printed on your master fact sheet.
Month/Year: remember, this is the month you are reporting on, not the month you write the report.
Caseworker: this is the ongoing worker at DHHS.
Placement (RFT) worker: this is the caseworker working with a foster or kinship placement. There won't be one if the children are at home. There may not be one in some placements. This person's name may be helpful to you if the foster family is having problems or needs to be referred to someone who can answer their questions.
Respondents: this is usually the parents. The respondents are listed on every court document on the first page following the child/ren's name(s) and "And concerning."
Next hearing date: if you know.
Next Staffing date: if you know.
Persons Interviewed/Records Reviewed: this is just a list of contact dates. Please do not include names of foster parents. The contacts listed here should correlate to the events in Case Activity.Use abbreviations such as FM (foster mother) or FF (foster father). See list of recommended abbreviations at the end of this document. Don't include supervised visits here. Those go in Contact with Child/Family. Please summarize what your learned from these people or records in Case Activity, not here.
Significant changes: except for the caseworker name and telephone, just put an "x" in the box before the change you want to indicate. To let the GAL know when a child moves or you get a new number, please call them. Checking the box on the form will remind them of the change. If you want the GAL to call you, check the "GAL Please Call Me!" The reports are sent from VFC CASA to the GALs every Thursday of the week we receive your report, so it may be more than a week until you get a call. If the matter is urgent, please call your GAL right away!
Contact with Child/Family: list contacts here; let us know who was there, where you were, the date and whether or not this was a supervised visit. Please type Yes or No (or Y or N) under "Supervised Visit." Again, please don't use names of foster parents (FPs). Use abbreviations such as FM (foster mother) or FF (foster father). And don't give placement addresses. If you visit a child at a foster home, just put "foster home" in the location space.
Case Activity: this is where to record your observations and summarize what you have learned. Please keep your reports factual and objective. If your information came from someone else (you didn't observe something yourself, but someone told you about it) be sure to include who told you, and quote them as accurately as you can. Again, please don't name foster parents. If there is something you want the GAL to know, but that you aren't comfortable putting into your report (such as a hunch), please call them. This is a narrative on what has happened on your case during that month. Include how the family is doing on the treatment plan, or any problems that have occurred.
Recommendations that promote the best interest of the child: this is where you can include your "impressions" and recommendations for placement, custody, treatment and other thoughtful suggestions. This is the one place that your opinions are appropriate. If you feel that something needs to be evaluated or done, this is the place to enter it into the record. It is very important, however, for your opinions to be backed up by facts from Case Activity that explain why you think what you think. If you want to recommend that a child be evaluated for a hearing problem, for example, describe what you have learned that leads you to think that this is important. Did the foster mom suggest it? If so, say so. Did you observe that the child didn't notice a lot of noise when her back was turned? Then say that. Some of the GALs have told us that they consider this the most important part of CASA reports.
Facts versus Opinions: A fact is what is. An opinion is what someone thinks about it. While it is important to express your opinion about what is in the best interest of the child in your case, your opinion will carry weight only if it is supported by facts.
For a report to be fact-based it is important to say not only what you learned, but also how you know what you know, when and where you learned it, and who else was there.
|Dad is a slob||When I visited the home on 8/12/04 Dad's clothing was dirty and there were bags of garbage on the floor|
|Mom was drunk||The caseworker told me that Mom's speech was slurred and her breath smelled of alcohol when she arrived for the 8/12/04 visit.|
|Jimmy is angry with his mother||The foster mother told me that after the visit on 8/12/04 Jimmy tore up the photograph of his mother and threw it in the trash|
|Susie is happy in her foster home||5-year-old Susie ran into the foster home when I returned her after the visit on 8/12/04. She hugged the FM, then went to her room to play with her dolls. She was singing to her dolls as I left.|
Making the Form Work for You
The standard form has a lot of check boxes. That is to make it easier to use, but it only works in Microsoft Word. If you don't use MS Word you can download a non-Word version of the form from our website, www.vfccasa.org.
One major consideration is to be sure that the GAL report information is separate from the VFC CASA report information.We will copy the GAL reports and send them to the GALs, but the VFC CASA page has information on it that shouldn't go into the GAL's records (such as locations of foster homes, and your telephone number). This means that the CASA Monthly Report to GAL must start on a new page.
If you are hand writing your report, be sure to use the special longer form so that you will have space to write. You will receive two copies of that form in your case assignment packet and more are available at the VFC CASA office. If you don't enough space, please use additional sheets of blank paper (8 1/2 x 11 inch) and clearly indicate which section you are continuing on the additional sheet. For example, if you need more room for Case Activity, on the new sheet write "Case Activity (continued)" and continue your comments. Please be sure to leave a minimum of 1/2 inch margin all the way around the extra sheet. When we make copies for the GALs the copier cuts off around the edge of the page.
Also, if you are hand writing, please use black or dark blue ink only. Pencil is not considered permanent and light inks and pencil don't copy well.
No matter how you write or submit your report, please be sure that the GAL report information starts on a new page, separate from the VFC CASA report information. We will copy the GAL reports and send them to the GALs, but the VFC CASA page has information on it that shouldn't go into the GAL's records (such as locations of foster homes, and your telephone number).
|Mother of Child||MOC|
|Father of Child||FOC|
|Maternal Grandmother of Child||MGMOC|
|Guardian ad litem||GAL|
|Department of Social Services||DHHS|