The Minnesota Child Welfare Training Academy (MNCWTA) Monthly Newsletter
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February 2022

Welcome to The Acorn! Each month we share the latest trainings, data, and resources available to child welfare professionals throughout Minnesota.

Training Portal: What We Have Learned

Now that the Training Portal has been live for a month (not including the pilot testing that we did prior to that), it is exciting to see that almost 800 accounts have been successfully created! Thank you to everyone who has reached out with concerns, questions, and recommendations. We appreciate your patience! Following are some of the common issues that learners are encountering:

  • Avoid Internet Explorer: Microsoft is ending support of Internet Explorer for certain operating systems later this year. Use Chrome, Edge, Safari, or any other updated browser.
  • Supervisor Invites: If you still need to create a Training Portal account, it is best if you can start with an invite from your supervisor. If your supervisor needs to create an account, or needs instruction on how to invite workers, directions are in the Training section below.
  • Child Welfare Foundations Training (CWTA X100): This training is only for new workers, and is assigned by a supervisor. If you are a supervisor or tribal leader and are interested in taking Foundations, let us know at and we will look at alternative options.
  • Check your account and registration one day before a training: Please log in to the Training Portal and check all registration links well before the beginning of your training. It is difficult to troubleshoot issues at the last minute, and missing more than 30 minutes of a training will result in a need to reschedule.
  • Check your Spam folder: As you create your Training Portal account, our system may send automated emails about next steps. Most emails will come from, so consider adding that to your contact list.

You can always find the Training Portal Log In page in the top-right navigation of our website:

A new ticketing system is now available on our website if you have technical issues. Fill out the form with as much detail as possible regarding the problem, and someone will be in contact with you. General questions about training or the Training Academy can still be sent to

The following courses are now available for registration through the Minnesota Child Welfare Training Academy (MNCWTA) Training Portal. Log in is available on our website - - in the top-right navigation, then select the Training Catalog, where you will find a course description and links to register.

Workers: If you do not yet have a Training Portal account, ask your supervisor to send you an invitation.

Supervisors and Tribal Leaders: If you do not yet have a Training Portal account, follow the instructions in this email. To invite your employees, and/or to assign new workers to a Child Welfare Foundations Training, follow the instructions in this email.

  • Signs of Safety (CWTA X206)
    February 22-24 | 9:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m. Each Day | Online
  • Family Group Decision Making: Overview and Facilitation (CWTA X202)
    March 8-9 | 9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. Each Day | Online
  • Responsive Child Welfare Practice with LGBTQ Youth (CWTA X210)
    March 21 | 9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. | Online
  • Advanced Practical Training - Collaborative Safety (CWTA X208)
    March 23-25 | 9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. Each Day | Online
  • Case Planning (CWTA X211)
    March 28 | 9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. | Online

Child Welfare Foundations Training (CWTA X100)

For new workers only. Cohort 92
starts on March 15. This training is assigned by a supervisor or tribal leader. Participants must be able to attend all of the following dates/times:
  • Classroom 1: March 15-17 (9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.)
  • ICWA/MIFPA: March 29-30 (9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.)
  • Classroom 2: April 12-14 (9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.)
  • SSIS Lab: April 18 (9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.)
  • Classroom 3: May 3-5 (9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.)
  • SSIS Lab: May 9 (9:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m.)
  • Classroom 4: May 24-26 (9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.)

Coming Soon
  • Human Trafficking and Sexually Exploited Youth: Basic Training for Child Welfare (CWTA X205)
    Starting in March a number of offerings for this course will be open for registration. More information will be available soon.
  • Structured Decision Making (CWTA X202)
    March 22 | 9:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m. | Online
  • Child Welfare Foundations Training (CWTA X100)
    Cohort 93 starts April 5
Training Data | January 2022
205 hours of training, 301 attendees, 67 counties represented, 12 hours of ICWA foundation trained by TTCP

Visit here to view the complete training report for January. Indian Child Welfare (ICWA) Foundation training is developed and provided by the Tribal Training and Certification Partnership (TTCP).
Staff Highlights
Connie Abbott-Foster image

Connie Abbott-Foster
Human Services Consultant

Ms. Abbott-Foster has a lifelong career of working with children and families. Her experience includes education, social work, program development, supervision, and organizational consulting. She began working for the child welfare training system at the Minnesota Department of Human Services in 2005.
Learn more...

Employment Opportunities
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Minnesota Child Welfare Training Academy (MNCWTA)
MNCWTA is still looking for an Evaluation and Credentialing Specialist.
Please help us spread the word! Learn more about this employment opportunity on our website.

Minnesota Department of Human Services (DHS)
The African American Child Well-Being Unit in the DHS Child Safety and Permanency division has a number of open positions: Child Welfare Case and Systems Review Consultant (#52686); African American Child Welfare Policy Consultant (#52685); African American Child and Family Well Being Community Grant Consultant (#52684); and African Heritage Child Welfare Advisory (#51307). Search for and apply for the positions using the job numbers above.

If interested, consider registering for an informational session to meet the hiring manager, Devon Gilchrist, and learn more about these opportunities. Sessions will be offered on Tuesday, February 15 from 11 a.m. - 12 p.m. or Thursday, February 17 from 1:30 - 2:30 p.m. Register here.

Other Training and Webinars

SSIS Mentor Coffee Talk: Statewide Release v22.1
New mentor coffee talk webinars have been added to the SSIS events calendar for 2022. The next talk will cover the Statewide Release v22.1, and will take place on Tuesday, February 22 from 9:00 - 10:30 a.m. Registration is required for each session and will close one hour prior to the event. Webinars will be recorded and posted for future reference. A full schedule can be found here.

DHS Permanency Training Opportunities
The DHS permanency quality assurance team has several WebEx-based training opportunities that will cover the adoption and kinship processes for children in foster care, as well as children’s social and medical histories. Dates, topics, and registration links are as follows:

For more information, visit Child protection, foster care, adoption: Training and scroll down to the section titled Conferences, trainings, and webinars, then open Training. If you have any questions, contact Permanency training topics are offered through DHS Child Safety and Permanency division Permanency unit.

Child Welfare Workforce Wellness

The best way to thrive during these trying times is to find ways to take care of yourself. Following are several options that may be helpful:
  • In this Greater Good Science Center podcast called When It’s Time to Face Your Fears, listeners are asked to consider what happens when we feel compassion for the things that scare us?
  • The U of M Bakken Center for Spirituality & Healing offers monthly webinars on a variety of topics designed to help individuals take charge of their health and wellbeing. Webinars are free but registration is required.

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Minnesota Child Welfare Training Academy (MNCWTA), 1711 County Road B, Suite 200N, Roseville, MN 55113, United States

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The Minnesota Child Welfare Training Academy (MNCWTA) is a collaboration between the Minnesota Department of Human Services (DHS) Child Safety and Permanency Division and the Center for Advanced Studies in Child Welfare (CASCW) at the University of Minnesota Twin Cities.

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