Applications Now Open for:

  • The ABA Center on Children and the Law’s National Conferences in Tyson’s Corner, Virginia:

    • The Access to Justice for Children and Families Conference on April 5-6, 2022; and

    • The National Parent Representation Conference on April 7-8, 2022.

Please click on the ABA dropdown section below for more details, scholarship criteria, and the application link.

Applications are due by midnight on Friday, January 21st!

Children's Commission regularly offers scholarships to qualifying attorneys to attend state and national conferences. Scholarships typically reimburse attorneys for conference registration fees, and occasionally, for travel-related expenses.

Generally, to meet the criteria for all scholarships, the applicant must:

  • currently represent DFPS or take appointments on a child welfare docket;
  • be in good standing with the State Bar of Texas;
  • be in good standing with their appointing or presiding judge; and
  • commit to completing and timely submitting a post-event survey from the Children’s Commission, in addition to the pre-event survey portion contained in the Commission scholarship application of their choice.

Preference may be given to attorneys who have not received scholarships from the Children’s Commission in the past 1-2 years. Other considerations may include, but are not limited to, the percentage of an attorney’s law practice devoted to child welfare cases and whether the applicant has support from their presiding or appointing judge.

For all scholarships, the Children's Commission determines scholarship criteria and deploys an application process that includes pre- and post-conference evaluations to identify or confirm the knowledge gained from the training, new practices which awardees plan to implement, and/or a current practice which they plan to change. Surveys also inquire about additional topics of interest to help inform planning for future training.

Please visit the sections below for more information on state and national conferences in child welfare. Please note, the Children’s Commission may not offer scholarships to every training listed. For questions about scholarships, please email CCScholarships@txcourts.gov.

Information on scholarships will be available on this webpage and also through the Children’s Commission’s Resource Letters for Judges and Attorneys. If you do not currently receive Resource Letters from the Children’s Commission, please link here to sign up today!

TexasBarCLE and the Child Protection Law Section of the State Bar of Texas will host the 5th Annual Advanced Child Protection Law Course on March 24-25, 2022 in Houston, Texas and via webcast replay on April 26-27, 2022. For more information, please visit the Child Protection Law Section web page.

The ABA’s Center on Children and the Law will host two national conferences in 2022: the Access to Justice for Children and Families Conference and the National Parent Representation Conference. These conferences bring together experienced child and parent attorneys, youth formerly in foster care, parents, judges, child welfare agency representatives, and other key stakeholders to receive not only substantive training, but also tips for returning to their home states to work on ways to improve the quality of legal representation for children and parents.

Please read below for details about scholarships to attend one of these national conferences, criteria for applicants, and a link to apply.

Dates and Locations:

The Center has announced it will host both national conferences in Tyson’s Corner, Virginia. The Access to Justice for Children and Families Conference is scheduled for April 5-6, 2022 and the National Parent Representation Conference is scheduled for April 7-8, 2022. For more information, please visit the ABA National Conferences web page.

The location for both conferences is:
Ritz Carlton Tysons Corner
1700 Tysons Boulevard
McLean, VA 22102
Hotel Information

Scholarship Details and Criteria:

The Children’s Commission will provide up to ten reimbursement scholarships to attend one of the national conferences. The scholarship will be in the form of reimbursement of up to $1,250 for the conference registration fee and eligible conference-related travel expenses to attend one of the conferences. Applicants who meet all of the criteria detailed below will be considered on a first-come, first-served basis for a scholarship. Scholarships are limited and early applications are strongly encouraged.

To meet the criteria for this scholarship, the applicant must:

  • currently represent DFPS or take appointments on a child welfare docket,
  • be in good standing with the State Bar of Texas,
  • be supported by their appointing or presiding judge, and
  • commit to timely completion of a post-event survey from the Children’s Commission.

Judges with applicants from their jurisdiction will be notified by the Children’s Commission and asked to confirm that the applicant currently represents DFPS or takes appointments on their CPS docket.

Attendance Policy:

This scholarship is funded by a federal grant, which is managed by the Supreme Court of Texas Children's Commission. The Children's Commission is responsible for reporting attendance in support of the grant expenses. All scholarship awardees will be expected to participate in the training and to provide detailed responses to a post-event survey from the Children’s Commission thereafter.

The number of scholarships for this event is limited. Awardees who can no longer participate or no longer need the scholarship in order to attend should notify the Children’s Commission in writing and with as much advance notice as possible so that the scholarship may be offered to another applicant. Please note that awardees who accept the scholarship and subsequently do not attend a training deprive another qualified attorney of the opportunity to attend the training and may also disqualify the awardee from receiving a Commission scholarship in the future.

Application Link and Deadline to Apply:

Applications will be accepted until midnight on Friday, January 21, 2022. To apply, click the button below: 

           

Scholarship Notification and Logistics:

If you are awarded a scholarship, the Children’s Commission will notify you after the scholarship application period has ended and after we have verified your standing with the Bar and your eligibility with your primary judge. We hope to notify all applicants of their scholarship status by February 7, 2022.

Each scholarship awardee will receive up to $1,250 in reimbursement after the event to cover registration and eligible conference-related travel expenses. A reimbursement form will be provided to awardees and must be submitted to the Children’s Commission within 45 days of travel. For information regarding eligible travel expenses for reimbursement, please review the Commission’s travel reimbursement guidelines.

All scholarship awardees are responsible for securing their own registration, hotel, and travel plans, and awardees must cover these costs before the training. Confirmed scholarship awardees may submit for reimbursement upon return. Please note that the early bird registration rate for both ABA conferences ends on Monday, February 14, 2022.

Awardees are also responsible for cancelling their own registration and travel plans in a timely manner, should they become unable to attend. The Children’s Commission is not able to offer reimbursement for those who incur costs and do not attend. Please note that per the ABA, the final date to cancel registration is March 29, 2022. If cancelled by 3/29/22, ABA will charge a $50 cancellation fee and refund the remainder.

All scholarship awardees are responsible for monitoring notices and emails from the event organizer. The Children’s Commission is not affiliated with the event and may not be aware of notices issued by the event organizer regarding cancellation policies, CLE notices and reporting rules, notices or policies regarding COVID-19, etc.

Helpful Links:

ABA National Conferences web page
Hotel Information

Every year, the AFL Course offers a day-long Child Abuse and Neglect (CAN) Workshop during the annual State Bar of Texas Advanced Family Law MCLE. This one-day training covers current topics of interest to Texas attorneys who practice on the CPS docket.

The 2022 AFL is scheduled for August 8-11, 2022 in San Antonio. The CAN Workshop is generally held on Wednesday during AFL, which would fall on August 10, 2022.

More information will be available on the TexasBarCLE website.

Each year, the NACC hosts a three-day training that convenes a national community of multidisciplinary advocates for children, youth, and families and usually covers a wide variety of topics. In most years, the conference also includes a one-day pre-conference training focused on the Red Book Training course, which covers the major competency areas based upon the NACC publication, Child Welfare Law and Practice (known as the “The Red Book”). The Red Book Training prepares attendees for the NACC Child Welfare Law Specialist certification exam.  

The NACC’s 45th National Child Welfare Law Conference is scheduled for August 22-24, 2022 in Baltimore, Maryland. A pre-conference session is also scheduled for August 21, 2022. More information is available on the NACC website.

State Certification Reimbursement

For more information, please visit the Texas Board of Specialization web page.