Assessment Tools


Assessing the strengths and challenges of the organization as it relates to its readiness for the Birth to Six Initiative is essential.   The following tools help identify the agency's readiness.  It is also recommended that the agency gather information through focus groups and surveys.  These will build upon the Organizational Culture Assessment

There are several areas to be explored in the Organizational Culture Assessment

  • Shared values
  • Training and Engagement of Staff
  • Family Engagement

Agencies will gauge their work along a continnum:

  1. Pre-awareness/undetermined
  2. Awareness
  3. Committment
  4. Concrete Plans
  5. Substantive Change

This Organizational Readiness Checklist provides of list of items that can be used when preparing for the implemenation of a new innovation.  The results from the organizational self-assessment should be used by agencies to develop a comprehensive action plan that includes:

  • An assessment of organizational readiness for implementation
  • An initial target population (if necessary)
  • An implementation plan
  • Roles and Tasks
  • Timelines



Fresno County conducted an organizational assessment early on, just as they implemented the Birth-to-Six Initiative.  They conducted focus groups with foster parents and relative caregivers, biological parents, independent living program (ILP) youth, non-management social workers, and children’s mental health staff.  The intent of the focus groups was to gather information about placement, trauma, and training regarding foster children ages birth to six.  There were a number of recommendations that were a result of information gained in the focus groups.  The summary of Fresno County's organizational assessment is presented here. 


ZERO TO THREE has developed a self-assessment tool for child welfare agencies.  This is a checklist that counties and organizations can use to evaluate current policies and procedures that are in place to ensure thaT the developmental needs of infants and toddlers are being met in the child welfare system.  It looks at:

  1. Assessing and addressing the needs of infants, toddlers, and their families who become known to the child welfare system.  
  2. Creating foster care that promotes attachement and permanency.
  3. Training and supporting child welfare staff and other professionals invovled in the child welfare system

The assessment document can be viewed at