Children's Services

It is with mixed emotions that I announce that Robena Spangler will be leaving her position as Director of the RCPA Children’s Division. Mixed, as we are so appreciative of the accomplishments Robena has made in this role and on behalf of the members, but also glad for her in her continued career and professional growth. Robena will be assuming the role of Director of the Bureau of Children and Family Services within the Office of Children, Youth, and Families (OCYF), Department of Human Services (DHS).

Robena has had many accomplishments since joining RCPA, which include:

  • Diversification and growth of the division into all aspects of children’s services
  • Expansion of the Children’s Steering Committee to cover all ages and the full array of children’s services
  • Development of key work groups, including:
    • Children in Congregate Care with complex medical and behavioral health needs;
    • Early Intervention/Infant Mental Health;
    • School-Based Behavioral Services; and
    • Intensive Behavioral Health Services (IBHS).
  • Led the partnership effort with Relias Learning to extend trainings to RCPA members
  • Improved cross-systems collaboration on behalf of RCPA members with ODP, OMHSAS, and OCYF

Robena’s final date with RCPA will be February 28 and she will assist RCPA in the transition during that time.

Please join me in congratulating Robena in taking on this exciting new challenge and opportunity and we look forward to working with her in this new role.

The opportunity to work with RCPA’s children’s services providers has been my pleasure and has taught me valuable lessons about promoting the interests of others and provided opportunities for professional growth. My passion for leadership was appreciated by some of the hardest working, most dedicated group of professionals in the field of human services. Thank you for your trust in me.” – Robena

– Richard S. Edley, PhD
RCPA President & CEO

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Folders with the label Applications and Grants

The Community to Home Grant will improve the health of children and youth with special health care needs (CYSHCN) by assisting them, along with their families, to get the services and support required to thrive in the community and develop to their full potential. Through this RFA, the Department of Health is interested in funding a home visiting model for in-home care coordination provided by community health workers (CHW).

Community to Home will assist CYSHCN and their families to navigate systems and identify resources in order to receive services, while empowering them to become strong advocates and be self-reliant. The in-home services provided will deliver care coordination and education, allowing CYSHCN and their families to learn the skills necessary to succeed in living with their special health care needs. Through these strategies, the Department’s aim is to improve the physical, mental, and behavioral health of CYSHCN.

Questions regarding the grant and application should be directed to Brad Hartman or by phone at 717-772-2763 at the PA Department of Health.

As you may be aware, RCPA has made a commitment to expand our business partnership with Relias Learning by entering into an agreement that will provide exclusive access to training content. A primary goal of the partnership is to facilitate access to trainings and other key professional development opportunities through an academy portal housed on the RCPA website. The training and professional development opportunities are available to RCPA members across all divisions. Wherever possible, RCPA will work with Relias to help our members realize cost efficiencies and access to high quality training.

Relias has a reputation for delivering high quality training in a variety of areas that helps behavioral health organizations provide value-driven care. Providers who utilize Relias have experienced improved quality of care, reduction in training costs, and improved hiring and development of a competent workforce.

You are invited to attend a webinar on Tuesday, January 22, 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm, hosted by the Relias team to introduce their solutions to include assessments, analytics, and learning. Relias currently provides training and analytics for more than 10,000 clients. They have demonstrated that use of online solutions results in lowered administrative costs, reallocation of internal resources towards mission-critical objectives, and a reduction in compliance issues. A copy of this announcement and link to registration was included in last week’s Weekly Digest.

If you are interested in learning more about the tools necessary to become an industry-leading, high-performing organization, please use the link provided below:

Register here for Introduction of Relias Solutions (Assessments, Analytics, and Learning)

Any questions, please contact Robena Spangler at RCPA. Thank you, in advance, for taking advantage of this offer.


Take the ASD Seminar Survey!

Do you provide support to people with autism, intellectual disabilities, or other developmental disabilities?
We need to hear from you!

To support individuals living with autism and their families, the Office of Developmental Programs (ODP) and The ASERT Collaborative are trying to learn more about training needs among providers who work with people who have autism, intellectual disabilities, or other developmental disabilities.

ODP is constantly building capacity by developing resources and trainings that are helpful to people who support these individuals.

By responding to this survey, you are helping ODP to create trainings and resources that will better meet your needs.

Please have your voice heard!

This survey should take less than 10 minutes to complete. Please complete this survey by January 18. If you have any questions, please feel free to contact us.

The Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia’s (CHOP) Gender and Sexuality Development Clinic has partnered with the Office of Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services (OMHSAS) on a training series on supporting transgender and gender expansive individuals. The presenters will review language and terminology associated with gender identity and introduce stages for gender identity development. Questions should be directed to Jill Stemple at OMHSAS.

Please see this flyer for more information and to register.

A Colourful 3d Rendered Concept Illustration showing Training written on a Blackboard

The Office of Children, Youth and Families (OCYF) is pleased to announce that it is providing training of the child welfare placement services budget documentation review process for Private Providers and any interested County Children & Youth Agencies (CCYA). The purpose of the FY 2019–20 training is to assist Private Providers and CCYA in completing the budget documents for the purposes of determining maximum levels of expenditure eligible for Federal Title IV-E and State Act 148 financial participation. Training will be provided at three regional locations and will encompass information related to those entities with the following licensures:

55 PA Code Ch. 3680
55 PA Code Ch. 3700
55 PA Code Ch. 3800
55 PA Code Ch. 5310
55 PA Code Ch. 6400
55 PA Code Ch. 6500

We are grateful for the organizations which have kindly agreed to host the FY 2019–20 Child Welfare Placement Budget Documentation Training. Training in each region will be held at the following locations and dates from 9:00 am until 4:00 pm:

CENTRAL:    Monday February 4, 2019
Pennsylvania Child Welfare Training Program Center
403 East Winding Hill Rd.
Mechanicsburg, PA 17055

WESTERN:   Wednesday February 6, 2019
George Junior Republic in Pennsylvania
233 George Junior Road
Grove City, PA 16127

EASTERN:      Friday February 15, 2019
Glen Mills Schools
185 Glen Mills Road
Glen Mills, PA 19342
Lunch will be available for purchase (Cash Only)

Reservations will be accepted beginning Thursday January 10, 2019. Seats will be reserved on a first come-first served basis until capacity is reached at each training location; a maximum of two attendees from each entity may be permitted.

OCYF strongly encourages each participating entity to send one representative with fiscal expertise and another representative encompassing expertise in the program(s) services.

*** Please keep in mind when making reservations, it is imperative that those representatives attending for either Private Provider or CCYA are the contacts responsible for completing budget documents or engaged actively in the Title IV-E/Act 148 reviews, respectively. ***

To RSVP, please email via the OCYF Contracts Resource Account ( as follows:

(1) CCYA or Private Provider Name,
(2) identify the training location and
(3) the number of attendees (1 or 2)

(4) Name(s) of attendee(s),
(5) include functioning e-mail address(es),
(7) indicate if any special accommodations are needed.

Please see an example below:

OCYF Child Welfare Placement Budget Documentation Training
OCYF appreciates your valued efforts as they hope to continue this growing process toward consistency and overall quality each year.
Contact Robena Spangler, RCPA Children’s Division Director, with questions.