P.O. Box 8094
Seminole, Florida 33775
November 30, 2012
ARTICLE I - PURPOSE
It is the purpose of this organization to provide a means by which child caring agencies that operate on a Christian basis cannot only be qualified to operate but can be regulated by their Christian peers. It would be the further and specific intent of FACCCA, through the issuance of these hereinafter provided minimum standards, as well as, the certification and regulation of said member agencies to insure the physical and spiritual health, safety and wellbeing of those children who are given residential care away from their parents, relatives or legal guardians by said member agencies. It is the further and final purpose of this organization to provide an agency whereby Christian child caring agencies will have an avenue of registration, which would be recognized by the State of Florida or other approval agencies.
ARTICLE II - STATEMENT OF FAITH
We believe that whatever the Bible says is true which means that we believe in the inspiration of both the Old and New Testaments. We believe that man was created by the direct act of God and in the image of God. We believe that Adam and Eve, in yielding to the temptation of Satan, became fallen creatures. We believe that all men are born in sin. We believe in the Incarnation, the Virgin Birth, and Deity of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. We believe in His vicarious and substitute atonement for the sins of mankind by the shedding of His blood on the cross, in the resurrection of His body from the tomb, His ascension to Heaven, and that He is now our advocate. We believe that He is personally coming again. We believe in His power to save men from sin. We believe that salvation is by grace through faith in the atoning blood of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. We believe that His creed is a sufficient basis for Christian fellowship and that all born again men and women who sincerely accept this creed can, and should, live together in peace, and that it is their Christian duty to promote harmony among the members of the Body of Christ, to be good stewards of the material blessings with which they are provided, and also to work together to get the Gospel to as many people in the shortest time possible.
ARTICLE III - DEFINITIONS
SECTION 1. FLORIDA ASSOCIATION OF CHRISTIAN CHILD CARING AGENCIES, INC.
The Florida Association of Christian Child Caring Agencies, Inc. (hereinafter to be known as "FACCCA") is an association of child caring agencies that care full time for children away from their parents, relatives, or legal guardians. An organization through its Board of Directors, or equivalent, and its staff ascribe in writing to the above statement of faith of FACCCA and are desirous of being recognized and registered by their Christian peers.
SECTION 2. CHILD.
Child or children means an unmarried person or persons under the age of 18 years.
SECTION 3. AGENCY.
An entity, agency, or facility that does or intends to provide for 24-hour care for children away from their parents, relatives, or legal guardians and which is operated on a religious basis, and receives no direct state or federal child care funds for its operation.
SECTION 4. MEMBER AGENCY.
An agency as herein above defined that is qualified for, applies for, and is accepted as a member of FACCCA and who agrees to comply with the minimum standards and rules of FACCCA.
SECTION 5. DEPARTMENT.
The department means the Florida Department of Children & Families unless otherwise defined.
SECTION 6. ASSOCIATE MEMBERS.
The Board of Directors may upon application to the board admit to nonvoting membership any persons or entities that shall be designated associate member (s) and shall be entitled to participate in the functions of FACCCA. Membership fees or dues may be assessed by the board. Associate membership shall be renewed annually upon forms provided by FACCCA and approval of the Board of Directors and membership.
SECTION 7. FAMILY FOSTER HOME.
A family foster home is a private family who provides care in their home under direct supervision of a member agency or FACCCA. (9-21-01)
SECTION 8. ADOPTION ENTITY.
An adoption entity is a member agency that provides adoption services in accordance with Florida Statute 63. (9-21-01)
ARTICLE IV - ORGANIZATION AND STRUCTURE
SECTION 1. DIRECTORS.
(1) Function. All corporate powers shall be exercised by or under the authority of, and the business and affairs of the corporation shall be managed under the direction of the Board of Directors.
(2) Qualifications of Directors. In addition to subscribing in writing to the Statement of Faith of FACCCA, directors shall be employed by, or be officers of or be on the Board of Directors of a member agency; except the two outside directors need not be employed by, nor officers of or be on the Board of Directors of a member agency.
(3) Duties. (a) A director shall perform his or her duties as a director, including his or her duties as a member of any committee of the board upon which he or she may serve, in good faith, in a manner he or she reasonably believes to be in the best interest of the corporation; and, with such care as an ordinarily prudent person in a like position would use under similar circumstances. In performing his or her duties, a director shall be entitled to rely on information, opinions, reports or statements, including financial statements and other financial data, in each case prepared or presented by:
1. One or more officers or employees of the corporation whom the directors reasonably believe to be reliable and competent in the matters presented.
2. Counsel, public accountants or other persons as to matters which the director reasonably believes to be within such a person’s professional or expert competence, or
3. A committee of the board upon which he does not serve, duly designated in accordance with the Articles of Incorporation or the Bylaws, as to matters within its designated authority, which committee the directors reasonably believe to merit confidence.
(a) A person who performs his duties in compliance with this section shall have no liability by reason of being or having been a director of the corporation or an employee of the corporation.
(4) Membership. Each agency making application shall be elected to membership by a majority vote of the membership and shall have membership privileges and voting rights in the following manner: one (1) vote for every fifty (50) children, or fraction thereof. In addition thereto, the voting membership of FACCCA may at its annual meeting elect to the Board of Directors two (2) persons not employed by, nor officers or directors of any member agency.
(a) There may be categories of membership: (1) Registration, (2) Associate, (3) Lifetime, (4) Individual or (5) others as from time to time may be established by the membership. Lifetime members may be granted voting rights by the membership exclusive of the requirements of Article IV. Lifetime members may be exempt from membership dues.
(b) Member agencies may have one (1) representative for every fifty (50) children or fraction thereof.
The voting membership of FACCCA may at its annual meeting elect to the Board of Directors, two (2) persons not employed by, nor officers of nor directors of any member agency. It is intended of this provision is that these two (2) directors be independent of and have no relationship to any member agency.
(c) Associate members or individual members shall not operate a residential child care program or a foster care program without first applying for and being approved as an registered program by FACCCA and subject to the registration requirements of Florida Statute 409.176. (4-7-00)
(5) Association Directors and Term of Office. The membership shall annually elect directors from the membership; the number and term is to be determined by the membership, but not less than seven.
(6) Vacancies. Any vacancy occurring in the Board of Directors by reason of resignation, removal from office, disability or death shall be appointed by the President to complete the balance of the term and thereafter shall be elected at the annual meeting of the association.
(7) Removal of Directors. At a meeting of the member agencies cal1ed expressly for that purpose, any director or the entire Board of Directors may be removed, with or without cause, by a vote of two-thirds (2/3) of all the member agencies.
(8) Quorum and Voting. A quorum shall be 50 percent (50%) plus one of the memberships of record at any regular or special meeting of the membership and 50 percent (50%) plus one of the directors for any regular or special meeting of the directors; or, 50 percent (50%) plus one of the Executive Committee.
(9) Place of Meetings. Regular and special meetings may be held in or out of the State of Florida.
(10) Time of Meetings. The membership shall meet at least annually. The Board of Directors shall meet at least semi-annually and the Executive Committee as needed, but no less than semiannually. Called or special meeting - The President shall have the authority to call a special meeting of the membership, the Board of Directors or the Executive Committee. The President shall call a special meeting of the membership upon written request of at least three (3) member agencies. Notice of any special or called meeting of the membership or Board of Directors shall be mailed no less than five (5) days before the meeting unless the membership should waive notice by majority vote. The Executive Committee may meet without the five-day notice or by telephone conference or mail ballot. Any official action taken by the Executive Committee as a result thereof shall be ratified by the Board of Directors at the next regular meeting.
(11) Action Without a Meeting. Any action required to be taken to enforce the Bylaws and or Minimum Standards may be taken by the Directors, Executive Committee, an appointed committee, or an employed Executive Director of the association. Such action shall be subject to ratification by the Board of Directors at the next regular meeting or a called special meeting.
(12) Other Duties and Responsibilities. The Board of Directors shall have those further responsibilities hereinafter set forth in these Bylaws or as might be delegated to it by a change of these Bylaws.
(13) Expense Reimbursement. Members are not paid a salary for serving on the board but shall be entitled to reimbursement for travel expenses while serving on official business of the board.
SECTION 2. MEETINGS OF THE ASSOCIATION
(1) Annual Meeting. There shall be an annual meeting of the association at such time and place as determined by the membership.
(2) Special Meetings. Special meetings of the association shall be held when requested by the President or the Board of Directors, or when requested in writing by not less than twenty-five percent (25%) of the entire member agencies entitled to vote at said meeting. A meeting requested by the member agencies shall be called for a date, not less than ten (10) and not more than sixty (60) days after the last required request is made. The notice of the meeting to be called shall be issued by the secretary and shall clearly state the purpose for which said meeting was requested or called.
(3) Place. Meetings of the association may be held in or out of the state of Florida.
(4) Notice. A notice of each meeting of the association issued by the secretary or the person designated to give such notice shall be mailed to each member agency at its address as it appears on the records of the corporation not less than thirty (30) days before the date set for the meeting unless otherwise provided herein. The notice shall state the purpose of the meeting and the time and place it is to be held. Such notice shall be sufficient for that meeting and any adjournment thereof. Any member agency may waive notice of any meeting before, at, or after the meeting.
(5) Voting. Each member agency shall have the right and shall be entitled to vote for the election or removal of members of the Board of Directors, their compensation or expenses, and for the amendment of the Articles of Incorporation of FACCCA. A vote of a majority of the member agencies at a meeting at which a quorum is present shall control the election and compensation or expenses of the directors. A two-thirds (2/3) vote of the members at a meeting at which a quorum is present shall control the amendment of the Articles of Incorporation.
(6) Quorum. A majority of the member agencies shall constitute a quorum at any meeting of the corporation.
(7) Proxies. At any meeting of the association, any member agency having the right to vote may be represented and vote by a proxy appointed by an instrument in writing.
SECTION 3. EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE.
(1) Members. In addition to the Board of Directors, there shall be an Executive Committee of the Board which
shall be comprised of the five (5) officers of the Board, (namely the President, the First and Second Vice Presidents, the Secretary, and the Treasurer), and the three (3) members of the board from among other members of the board who shall be designated annually by the Board, a n d the immediate past president of FACCCA. The Executive Committee shall meet at least two (2) times a year at the time and place directed by the President.
(2) Powers and Duties. The Executive Committee shall have general supervision and control of all affairs and activities of the Florida Association of Christian Child Caring Agencies when the Board of Directors is not in session and may act for and in place of the Board, except in reference to electing or removing any director or officer. The President shall have the power to appoint a member to act as an interim officer until the office may be filled by election. The immediate past President of FACCCA shall be a member of the Executive Committee. Additionally, the Executive Committee shall exercise such other powers as are provided for in these bylaws.
SECTION 4. OFFICERS.
(1) Officers. The officers of this corporation shall consist of a President, a First and Second Vice-President, a Secretary and a Treasurer; each of whom shall come from and be elected by the membership at the annual meeting of FACCCA. Such other officers and assistant officers and agents as may be deemed necessary may be elected or appointed by the Board of Directors from time to time.
(2) Duties. The officers of this corporation shall have the following duties:
(a) The President shall be the Chief Executive Officer, shall have the general and active management of the business and affairs of the corporation subject to the direction of the Board of Directors or Executive Committee, preside at all meetings of the association and the Board of Directors and Executive Committee.
(b) The First Vice-President shall act in the place of the President in the absence or incapacity of the President or the Second Vice-President shall do so in the event of the absence or incapacity of the First Vice President. The Vice Presidents shall have other duties as may be imposed upon them from time to time by the President or the Board of Directors or Executive Committee.
(c) The Secretary shall have custody of and maintain all of the corporate records except the financial records; shall record the minutes of all meetings of the association, send out notice of meetings, and perform such other duties as may be prescribed by the Board of Directors or the President or Executive Committee.
(d) The Treasurer shall have custody of all corporate funds and financial records, shall keep full and accurate accounts or receipts and disbursements and render accounts thereof at the annual meetings and whatever else required by the Board of Directors or the President, and shall perform such other duties as may be prescribed by the Board of Directors or the President or the Executive Committee.
(3) Executive Director. An Executive Director may be employed by the Association and shall perform such duties as may be directed by the Board and designated duties described to various office holders under their direction. The Executive Director may serve as a member of the Board of Directors if so elected and shall be an ex officio member of all committees. The Executive Director may employ such other persons as may be required to perform the duties and functions of the association.
(4) Term. The officers shall be elected at the annual meeting and shall serve a one-year (1) term of office, from annual meeting to annual meeting. No person shall serve in more than one (1) office during an annual term of office.
(5) Removal of Officers. Any officer or agent elected or appointed by the membership may be removed by the membership whenever in its judgment the best interests of the corporation will be served thereby. Any vacancies occurring in any office may be filled by the President.
SECTION 6. CORPORATE SEAL.
The Board of Directors shall provide a corporate seal which shall be circular in form and shall have inscribed thereon the following: FACCCA
P.O. Box 8094
Seminole, Florida 33775
SECTION 7. AMENDMENT OF BYLAWS.
These Bylaws may be repealed or amended, and new bylaws may be adopted by the membership by a majority vote at a regular or special meeting at which a quorum is present and for which meeting a notice has been sent to each director at least ten (10) days before the meeting, giving not only the time and place of said meeting, but a copy of the proposed change or amendment of the bylaws.
SECTION 8. RULES.
The membership may promulgate such other rules for the operation of the association as it deems necessary and proper to carry out the intent of the Article of Incorporation and Bylaws of FACCCA.
ARTICLE V - MEMBERSHIP AND REGISTRATION FOR MEMBER AGENCIES
SECTION 1. OPERATION.
An agency which is subject to registration as defined by Florida law, shall not accept children for care in their facility until a Certificate of Registration is secured from FACCCA.
SECTION 2. APPLICATION FOR MEMBERSHIP AND REGISTRATION.
Application for membership and registration shall be made on forms provided by FACCCA and shall be signed by the person or persons having the responsibility for the control of the agency and shall be submitted along with a designated fee (if required) at least thirty (30) days prior to the anticipated effective date of the Certificate of Registration. Applications for the annual renewal of the certificate must be submitted along with a designated fee (if required) at least thirty (30) days before the expiration of the current certificate. To remain a member in good standing and eligible for annual registration by FACCCA, member executives and/or their designated staff members shall be in attendance at no less than fifty (50%) of the FACCCA Meetings held annually.
SECTION 3. QUALIFICATIONS FOR REGISTRATION.
To qualify for a Certification of Registration, an agency must be a member in good standing of FACCCA and must meet the minimum standards established by FACCCA prior to the issuance of a Certificate of Registration. An agency must be inspected by a representative of FACCCA, the county sanitation department and the local fire department or persons trained by the office of the State Fire Marshall in fire prevention and safety in accordance with state or local ordinances and codes. Written approval of health sanitary conditions and fire prevention and protection must be on file with FACCCA. Community Residential Homes as defined by F.S. 419 and who meet the requirement of membership may enjoy all the rights and privileges as a member agency.
Qualifications for foster care programs authorized by F.S. 409.176 and members serving as adoption entities as provided by F.S. 63 may vary if these programs do not operate a residential group care facility as a part of their foster care or adoption programs. Such programs shall meet all requirements related to safety, personal background screening and financial accountability. The exemption provisions of Article VI (Section 4) may be applied in such cases. (9-20-01)
SECTION 4. REGISTRATION.
The Registration Certificate may be issued upon authorization of the inspection committee or Executive Director; subject to ratification at the next regular meeting of the Membership. Each Certificate of Registration shall be for a member agency at a specific location. It shall automatically become invalid if the agency is operated at another address or under different control to which a new certificate may be issued upon proper notification and approval.
SECTION 5. TERM OF CERTIFICATE.
The certificate shall be valid for one (1) year from date of issuance unless suspended, revoked, or voluntarily relinquished or unless it is specifically issued for a period of less than one (1) year. This certificate must be displayed at all times in a conspicuous place in the agency.
SECTION 6. PROVISIONAL CERTIFICATE.
A provisional certificate may be issued for a period of not more than one (1) year to applicants or member agencies that cannot meet one or more of the standards, but would be able to meet all required standards in the time allowed by the provisional certificate. Such certificates will not be granted if the standards of the applicant or member cannot be meet or affects the life and safety of the residential children. Such provisional certificates shall not be subject to renewal.
SECTION 7. CESSATION OF OPERATIONS.
When a member agency ceases to care for children during a certificate period, such certificate shall automatically be terminated and FACCCA shall be notified and the certificate returned to FACCCA.
SECTION 8. RECORDS.
The germane portions of the premises, as well as, the germane records and programs of a member agency shall be open at all reasonable times to inspection by representatives of the local health, sanitation and fire departments in their respective areas of jurisdiction; as well as, by representatives of FACCCA.
SECTION 9. SUSPENSION OR REVOCATION OF CERTIFICATE.
FACCCA shall have the authority to reject an application for a certificate or suspend or revoke a certificate at any time a member agency fails to meet or maintain the minimum standards of FACCCA or to observe any limitations specified on the certificate. The following actions by a member agency or its employees may be a ground for the denial, suspension or revocation of a certificate:
(1) An intentional or negligent act affecting the health, safety and wellbeing of children in the facility.
(2) A violation of the provisions of section 409.176, Florida Statutes and The Bylaws and rules and
regulations promulgated from time to time by FACCCA.
(3) A conviction or admission of child abuse .
(4) A conviction of any crime related to the care or wellbeing of children.
SECTION 10. APPEAL OF A DENIAL, SUSPENSION OR REVOCATION OF REGISTRATION.
An agency shall have the right to appeal a decision denying, suspending or revoking its registration or application for registration. The appeal shall be handled in accordance with the procedures to be adopted by the Board of Directors.
SECTION 11. CORRECTIVE ACTION PLANS.
FACCCA shall make a reasonable attempt to discuss each violation of section 409.176, Florida Statutes, and these Bylaws and rules with each member agency prior to taking action hereunder. These attempts shall include a request for such member agency to submit in writing its plan to correct the violations of said statute or rules, including the time within which it proposes to make such corrections. Any actions taken to correct such violations shall be documented in writing by the member agency and shall be verified by FACCCA.
FACCCA MINIMUM STANDARDS
SECTION 1. GENERAL.
(I) Purpose. It is the intent and purpose of FACCCA, through the issuance of these minimum standards, to insure the physical and spiritual health, safety and wellbeing of those children for whom residential care away from their parents, relatives or legal guardians must be provided.
(2) Legal Basis. FACCCA has been formed pursuant to the laws of Florida as a Nonprofit corporation to allow the same to operate as the Florida statewide childcare organization qualified to certify registration of residential child caring agencies that otherwise qualify for registration under section 409.176, Florida Statutes.
(3) Certificate of Registration. No agency may accept a child for care unless such agency shall first have procured a Certificate of Registration from FACCCA empowering or authorizing such agency to care for children.
(4) Exemptions. It is recognized that there are and will continue to be agencies that would otherwise qualify to be registered but that, because of their size, should not be required to comply with all of the rules and regulations that would apply only to other larger member agencies. With this in mind, but subject to the exemption, it is provided that any agency that is otherwise qualified to be registered and which in fact, does apply and is granted membership but which has at all times during its membership less than ten (10) children in residence shall not be required to comply with certain of the provisions of these bylaws, as specified and may receive a limited registration.
SECTION 2. REQUIREMENT OF NEEDS, ORGANIZATION AND ADMINISTRATION.
(1) An agency must provide evidence of the need for its proposed services in its community to be entitled to be registered by FACCCA.
(2) An agency must be incorporated under the laws of the State of Florida as a Non-Profit Corporation or church.
(3) The agency may not directly receive any state or federal child care funds for its operation. An assignment to and the receipts by an agency of any funds to which a child is entitled to receive from a governmental agency for his or her support, including but not limited to social security payments, shall not be considered, however, as the agency directly receiving state or federal child care funds for its operation.
(4) All agencies shall have a governing board. This governing board must meet at least once (1) a year. An agency may have an executive committee, comprised of selected board members, which shall meet with the executives of the member agency at least four (4) times per year. Permanent minutes shall be kept for such meeting of both the executive committee and the general board. The responsibilities of the governing board shall include the following:
(a) To select, employ, supervise and discharge the executive that has control of the day-to-day operation of the agency.
(b) To establish policies under which the member agency is to operate in consultation with the executive in charge.
(c) To review at least annually, the policies and functions according to its defined purposes and to assure compliance with at least its minimum standards, regulations, and conditions and those of FACCCA.
(d) To establish a financial and accounting system that will adequately and properly account for the receipts and disbursements of monies and property received from all sources by the member agency.
(e) To furnish to the Florida Association of Christian Child Caring Agencies evidence of compliance with current state, federal and local financial reporting requirements. Agencies exempt from statutory finances reporting requirements shall still furnish evidence of approved financial record keeping.
(f) To insure that resident children are not required to be involved in publicity or fund-raising activities which could exploit or embarrass them or their families. If possible a statement signed by their parents, the relative who committed them to the agency, or their legal guardian granting permission for the child's name or picture to be used in publicity shall be obtained and kept on file for each child involved in such publicity.
(5) It is recommended although not required that each member agency provide for the proper bonding of board members, officers and agency employees who handle operating or capital funds of the agency.
(6) Each member agency shall maintain adequate fire and public liability insurance or at least in amounts as might be required by law and/or established by FACCCA.
(7) Each member agency shall maintain at least the following records:
(a) A permanent register for all children receiving care which shall include the name of the child and his family members, guardians, or important persons, family address, telephone numbers, if any, of such persons, date of admission and/or discharge, the child's birth date, custody status and social security number .
(b) The individual case records for all children receiving care shall include the admission study, agreements with parents or guardian, school and medical reports, if available, copy of birth certificate (if obtainable), copies of any court orders, treatment plans and any ensuing records, all of which shall be protected from unauthorized examination and shall reflect the current status of each child.
(c) Written policies on hiring, salaries and other benefits for employees, which should include:
1. Written job descriptions and titles for each position defining the qualification, duties, and lines of authorities.
2. Salary scales and provisions for salary increase.
3. A description of employee benefits, including provisions of paid annual leave, sick leave, holidays, and any other special leaves.
4. Procedures, which will encourage professional growth through supervision, orientation, in- service training and staff development.
5. Procedures for annual evaluation of work and performance of each staff member and for six- month evaluation of each new direct care staff member.
6. A description of the termination procedures established for registration, retention, or discharge.
7. A grievance procedure for employees.
(a) Personnel records of full-time paid employees.
(b) Financial reports and audits (if required).
(c) Log on all disciplinary incidents.
(d) Fire and sanitation inspection reports.
(e) Record of fire exit drills held.
8. The member agency shall prepare a proposed written budget annually.
9. The member agency shall provide written notification to FACCCA within thirty (30) days of
changes in its director or statement of purpose.
ARTICLE VII - AGENCY STAFF
SECTION 1. EXECUTIVE.
A competent executive shall be selected and employed by the governing board and shall be responsible for the overall day-to-day operations of the member agencies' facilities.
(1) Unless the agency qualifies for an exemption under Article VI, this executive shall be qualified by one of the following:
(a) Either a Master's degree from a college, university or seminary in a course of study related to child care and development and at least one (1) year of work related to child care and development, or
(b) A Bachelor's degree from a college, university or bible college in a course of study related to child care and development and at least two (2) years of work related to child care and development, or
(c) A high school diploma, or its equivalent, and the demonstration of outstanding ability and leadership through a minimum of four (4) years of work in a position carrying executive responsibilities in areas related to child care and development.
(2) Even if said agency qualified for an exemption, its executive director shall be qualified by one of the following:
(a) A Ministerial degree from a college, university or bible college and at least one (1) year of work related to child care and development, or
(b) A high school diploma, or its equivalent, and the demonstration of outstanding ability and leadership through a minimum of two (2) years of work in a position carrying executive responsibilities in work related to childcare and development.
(3) The Member Agency shall provide to FACCCA the required credentials and proof of training of the agency executive director and/or agency director in charge of the daily operations of the facility in accordance with the FACCCA Bylaws. The agency executive director and/or director in charge of daily operations must have twelve (12) hours of FACCCA training to include, but not limited to the FACCCA Bylaws and Minimum Standards and FS 409.176. At any time the agency replaces the executive director or director in charge of daily operates, they must have completed twelve (12) hours of FACCCA training prior to taking on the duties of the executive and/or director.
(4) A staff person or persons employed by the executive shall be appointed by said executive to assume responsibility for the overall and day-to-day operation of the member agency in the absence of the executive. Either the executive or one of his appointed assistants should be available on the agency's premises at all times when children are on the premises.
(5) The duties and responsibilities of the executive shall be the following:
(a) Determine the policies of the member agency in conjunction with and under the supervision of the governing board.
(b) Supervise the establishment and preparation of a financial and accounting system that will adequately and properly account for the receipts and disbursements of monies and property received from all sources by the member agency, as well as, provide for an annual audit of said system by a certified public accountant if an audit is required by the agency.
(c) Administer the employment, supervision, training and termination of the agency staff.
(d) Administer the operation of the program of the member agency.
(e) Provide regular reports and any requested reports to the governing board.
SECTION 2. AGENCY STAFF.
(I) Personal Qualifications.
(a) The member agency shall verify, if possible prior to employment, the personal qualifications of the prospective employee with his former employer (s).
(b) The member agency shall require a written statement as part of the completed application listing any past or current police records, and mental or physical conditions or addiction which would adversely affect the applicant's capacity to work with children.
(c) The member agency shall adhere to the screening provisions set forth in section 409.175, Florida Statutes.
(d) The member agency shall require each employee, if possible prior to employment, to present a medical statement from a physician verifying that he/she suffers from no communicable diseases, specific illnesses or disabilities which would interfere with that person's ability to work with or care for children. The physician's statement shall be written and shall be based upon an examination not more than six (6) months prior to employment.
(2) Social Services Staff.
It is recommended that member agencies which employ social services staff to provide social services to children and their families use the following qualification in employment of such staff:
(a) The supervisor of the social services staff should have a Master's degree from a school or college of social work or a recognized bible college and have no less than two (2) years of social work experience.
(b) A social worker should have a Master's degree from a school or college of social work or a recognized bible college and have no less than one (1) year of social work experience, or a Bachelor's degree in behavioral science and have no less than two (2) years of experience in social work.
(c) A Master's of Theology from a recognized seminary may be substituted in the educational requirements of (a) above and a Bachelor's of Theology from a recognized bible school or college in lieu of (b) above.
(3) Director of Cottage or Campus Life.
It is recommended that the Director of Cottage or Campus Life have a Bachelor's degree in Theology or Behavioral Science plus experience as a house parent. Such person should be capable of teaching the cottage staff acceptable practices of a house or cottage parent.
(4) Child Care Staff.
Child care staff including foster parents should be selected on the basis of the personal characteristics that qualify them to serve as part of a team and to accept the objectives, policies and procedures of the member agency and FACCCA in providing good institutional care for the children under their control. Staff should also be of good physical, mental, and spiritual health and character and of sufficiently good physical health so as to be able to perform their assigned duties. It is further recommended that such staff be:
(a) At least 18 years of age.
(b) Have no less than a high school (or equivalent) education, or agree upon employment to work for
fulfillment of this requirement.
(c) Express a willingness to be involved in ongoing staff training.
(d) Foster parents shall have adequate and safe driving records.
(e) Substitute child care staff and foster parents will have the same qualifications as regular child care
(5) Other Staff.
Another staff employed by the member agency, including but not limited to clerical, food service and maintenance staff are also essential to the total childcare program and should make a positive contribution in their relationships to the children. They should be qualified for their individual positions by training and/or experience and should exhibit the responsibility and maturity demanded for employment in a child care agency. They should also be of the highest moral and spiritual character.
SECTION 3. STAFF TRAINING.
Each member agency shall provide in-service training for all administration and child care staff sufficient to ensure the adequate care and supervision of resident children and the accomplishment of the objectives of the agency and FACCCA. It is recommended that such training should include:
(1) An orientation that should cover all emergency procedures, administrative and personal policies and procedures, job responsibility, familiarization with the physical facility and equipment and, except as they may be exempted by law, the requirements of Chapters 415 and 827, Florida Statutes, concerning the reporting of suspected or known instances of child abuse. The minimum standards and requirements of that member agency and FACCCA should also be included. It should be determined at that time that the prospective staff member can and does subscribe to all of said procedures and standards.
(2) First aid, use of local health departments, volunteer-registered nurses, doctors, etc.
(3) Child care staff (house or cottage parents) training workshops and conferences.
(4) Conferences and seminars for administrators and executives of child care agencies.
(5) The presentation to each staff member at the time of his or her employment of a written statement of personnel practices approved by the governing board. It is recommended that this statement include a minimum of the following:
(a) A description of the position, which includes estimated working hours, salary, qualifications, and
(b) Provisions, if any, for paid vacations, sick leave, and holidays observed.
(c) Employee benefits.
(d) Provisions for evaluation of work performance.
(e) Resources and plans for staff development.
(f) Organizational chart.
(g) Grievance procedures.
(h) Termination procedures.
(i) The reporting requirements of Chapters 415 and 827, Florida Statutes, unless exempted by law.
(j) It is recommended that the agency maintain a current personal record for each employee to include character, work, and professional references.
(6) All administration and staff members working directly with children must receive at least forty (40) hours of training activities during each full year of employment. Activities related to the staff member’s routine tasks shall not be considered training for the purpose of this requirement. The FACCCA Registered Agency shall document all training received. This may include, but is not limited to, the following areas:
(a) Administration procedures and overall program goals.
(b) Understanding of children’s emotional needs and problems which affect and inhibit their growth.
(c) Family relationships and the impact of separation.
(d) Substance abuse: recognition and prevention.
(e) Identification and reporting responsibilities in regard to child abuse and neglect.
(f) Principles and practices of child care.
(g) Behavior management techniques, including Non-Violent Crisis Intervention.
(h) Emergency and safety procedures.
(i) The screening supervision and use of volunteers.
(7) Volunteers. A facility that utilizes volunteers to work directly with children on an intermittent basis for more than ten (10) hours per month must screen the volunteer in the same manner as the employees of the facility. A volunteer who assists on an intermittent basis for less than ten (10) hours per month shall not be included in the term “personnel” for the purpose of screening, providing that a person who meets the screening requirements of FS 409.175 is always present and has the volunteer in his or her line of sight.
ARTICLE VIII - PHYSICAL CARE OF CHILDREN
SECTION I. STAFFING REQUIREMENTS.
Each member agency shall develop and follow a written staff/child ratio. The ratio shall be appropriate to the facilities purpose and shall assure the children's safety and protection. The ratio shall be no less than one (1) child care worker or trained volunteer for every six (6) children, when children six years or older are awake, and no less than one (1) to twelve (12) when children are sleeping. Children under the age of 6 shall be supervised by a staffing ratio of 1 to 4 when awake and 1 to 6 when sleeping.
SECTION 2. LIVING AREA.
(1) Each member agency shall provide living and sleeping space adequate for the health, safety, and comfort of the resident children. It is recommended that sleeping space be not less than fifty (50) square feet per child, with a room designated for a single occupant being no less than seventy-five (75) square feet. A sleeping room is defined as an area that is primarily used for rest and sleep during normal nighttime hours. Areas in which children require consistent observation and/or treatment by a staff person are not considered sleeping areas for purpose of this rule.
(2) Separate sleeping rooms for boys and girls over the age of three (3) shall be provided.
(3) Each child shall have his/her own bed which shall not be shorter than his/her height, nor less than thirty (30) inches wide. Bed linen shall be provided for seasonal comfort in adequate quantities for laundry convenience.
(4) Each child shall have his/her own drawer and closet space.
(5) Bath facilities shall be maintained in a state of cleanliness and repair and shall be adequate to meet the needs of resident children. It is recommended that there be:
(a) One standard toilet for every six (6) children.
(b) One lavatory for every six (6) children.
(c) One tub or shower for every six (6) children.
SECTION 3. MEDICAL AND DENTAL CARE.
(1) A member agency shall provide, or require parents, guardians or custodians to provide for a physical and dental examination of all children within twelve (12) weeks prior to admission to the facility and thereafter annually or more often, if needed.
(2) Psychological or psychiatric examination or treatment may and should be provided upon the recommendations of the agency's medical doctor.
(3) Names, addresses, and telephone numbers of doctors, hospitals, ambulances, and any emergency numbers shall be posted in a conspicuous place.
(4) Upon employment, all child care staff shall be presented with written procedures for handling medical emergencies. Such procedures shall be reviewed at least every six (6) months with child care staff.
(5) Provision shall be made for the care of children with minor communicable disease or the temporary need for privacy. When such isolation is necessary, close supervision shall be provided.
(6) Whenever possible all medical care beyond the provision of first aid shall be under the instruction and direction of a licensed medical doctor.
(7) All medicines and drugs shall be securely locked up and kept out of the reach of the children and dispensed only by authorized personnel. Prescription medications shall be dispensed only by authorization of a licensed medical doctor: and, accurate, consistent records shall be kept of the dispensing of all medications.
(8) The parents, relatives, legal guardians, or whoever placed a child in a member agency and the president or person in charge of FACCCA shall be notified immediately of the death or critical illness of a child residing in a member agency. Parents, relatives, legal guardians, or whoever placed a child in a member agency shall be notified within twenty-four (24) hours of the serious illness or injury of a child resident in a member agency.
(9) The existence of any communicable disease shall be reported to the local health officer of the county in which the member agency is located.
(10) Member agencies that agree to accept an HIV infected child for care, shall abide by the following confidentiality requirements. Confidentiality of HIV records are protected by law. Written consent of the person (child) to whom specific information pertains must be obtained if any information other than the following is to be disclosed. The identity of any child upon whom an HIV test is performed and/or his HIV test result shall be disclosed to an employee of the member child caring agency directly involved in the placement, care or custody of such a child only when the employee has a need to know such information. An employee has a need to know the identity of a child and his test results if:
(a) The employee is involved in case specific services such as assessing needs, determining eligibility, arranging care, monitoring case activities, permanency planning and providing care for the child in the member home.
(b) The employee is involved in providing case specific supervision or monitoring of cases for eligibility or legal compliance or casework services.
(c) The employee is involved in providing case specific clerical support.
(d) The identity of a child upon whom an HIV test is performed must be disclosed to member foster family or child caring agency registered pursuant to Florida Statutes, who is directly involved in the care of such a child and in addition has a need to know such information. Case files shall not be segregated or flagged to identify an HIV infected child.
SECTION 4. FIRE, HEALTH, SANITATION, AND SAFETY.
A member agency must provide access at reasonable times for the appropriate state and local officials responsible for the maintenance of fire, health, sanitation, and safety standards to inspect the member's facilities to assure that such facilities are in compliance with standards. Evidence of inspections and approval must be on file with FACCCA prior to the annual re-registration of the agency.
SECTION 5. CHILD ABUSE AND NEGLECT.
(1) The member agency shall have and follow procedures for handling any suspected incidents of child abuse or neglect involving staff. All cases of child abuse and neglect shall be reported through the director of the member agency and/or in accordance with Chapters 415 and 827, Florida Statutes.
(2) The member agency shall require each staff member to read and sign a statement which acknowledges that he/she understands his/her responsibility under the child abuse and neglect laws of the State of Florida to report all such incidents of child abuse and neglect.
SECTION 7. CLOTHING AND PERSONAL BELONGINGS.
(1) The member agency shall insure that each child has his/her own clean and well-fitting clothes, appropriate to the child's age, sex and individual needs, including but not limited to similar clothes if the member agency elected to provide similar clothing for all its children.
(2) The member agency shall insure that each child has individual items necessary for personal hygiene and grooming.
(3) Where appropriate, the member agency shall allow a child to possess and bring personal belongings. The member agency may, however, limit or supervise the use of these items while the child is in its care.
(4) The member agency shall send all such personal clothing and belongings home with the child when he/she leaves the facility.
SECTION 8. RECREATION, LEISURE ACTIVITIES, AND WORK EXPERIENCES.
(1) The member agency shall have a plan for a range of indoor and outdoor recreational and leisure activities.
(2) The member agency shall have a plan for the use of work experiences to provide a constructive experience for children. Children's participation in work activities shall be adequately supervised and shall not be used as a substitute for the duties or assignments of staff members.
(3) The member agency may assign work activities appropriate to the age and ability of the children in its care. Work experiences shall not conflict with schooling, visits with the family or any other activity associated with meeting the goals of the service plan.
SECTION 9. TRANSPORTATION SAFETY
(1) Vehicles used to transport children shall be maintained in safe operating condition.
(2) Vehicles used to transport children shall be covered by adequate liability insurance.
(3) The number of persons in a vehicle used to transport children should not exceed the number of
(4) Buses or vans used to transport six (6) or more children should be equipped with a first aid kit.
ARTICLE IX - ADMISSION AND DISCHARGE PROCEDURES
SECTION 1. ADMISSION.
Children under age eighteen (18) shall be admitted based upon need as determined by the member agency admission policies and criteria established by the member agency. Children under the age of five (5) shall be documented in the agency case file as either an emergency, a placement to keep siblings residing together, or as a child covered in an approved program serving infants and young children. Continued diligent efforts shall be made to place such a child in a more appropriate placement. Such plans may include placement into a family foster home operated under direct supervision of the member agency.
SECTION 2. FAMILY FOSTER HOMES.
Family Foster Homes may be approved by member agencies as provided in F.S. 409.176(1) (a) and under the following guidelines. Member agencies may temporarily place a child in an approved family foster home of the member agency. A family foster home may be sponsored by or approved by the member agency, under the following terms and conditions.
(a) That the family foster parents and all covered children living within the home have met the requirements of Florida Statute 409.175, pertaining to child abuse registration examination and criminal records checks.
(b) The home and its physical condition have met and been approved by agency staff as meeting the required standards, and where required, have met local health and fire inspection standards.
(c) That the family foster parents have adequate resources to provide for said child or children and/or the agency using the approved family foster home agrees to provide a per diem or share in the cost of care; such cost share to include adequate medical and dental expenses under the direction of the member agency.
(d) That the member agency has contractual or provisional permission from the parents, legal guardians, or placing court, to place said child in an approved family foster home of the agency. Foster parents shall meet the minimum standards for foster parents. There shall be an approved contract between foster parents and the sponsoring agency prior to placing a child with the foster parents.
(e) No more than five (5) children shall be placed in any approved foster home. Where possible, no more than two (2) children under the age of five (5) should be placed in any approved foster home, unless multiple siblings need to be placed together or unless the foster parents have adequate volunteers or support staff that enable necessary individualized care needed for younger children.
(f) A member agency serving as an adoption entity that receives a minor child for adoption may place the child in an approved family foster home on a temporary basis, if necessary. An adoptive family may also be approved as a family foster home provided a home study and all conditions for a family foster home have been met prior to placing the child in accordance with F.S. 63. (9-20-01)
SECTION 3. SOCIAL SERVICES.
Social services shall be provided or approved for each child and, if applicable, his families during his/her entire stay in the member agency and shall include as a minimum the following:
(1) The preadmission study and application
(2) A written service plan which shall include:
(a) An assessment of the child's family's needs, strengths, weaknesses and problems.
(b) The child's educational, recreational, and medical needs.
(c) The family's involvement in planning and carrying out the service plan, if possible, and to the
(d) The projected length of stay and conditions under which the family will be reunited, including
the date of the first review of such projections.
(e) Written policies that encourage and support family visits and other forms of “communication of
children with their families”.
(3) Regular contact with the child and his family or guardian to help them maintain their family relationship. Planning for family reunification should be a priority when appropriate.
(4) Review the child’s status and progress report at least semi-annually. This report shall be shared with the child’s parents, guardian, or the agency having legal custody of the child at least semi-annually.
(5) Individual or group counseling shall be provided as needed for each child to help them deal with personal problems, develop satisfying relationships, and grow toward maturity.
(6) If possible and to the extent needed, follow up services shall be provided or arranged for children and their families following discharge of the child back to his family.
SECTION 4. ADMISSION AND DISCHARGE POLICIES AND PROCEDURES.
Policies and procedures shall be in writing and copies shall be provided to the parents, relative or legal guardian placing a child in the care of a member agency before the child is accepted. It is recommended that these procedures and policies contain as a minimum the following:
(1) The completion of a preadmission study completed by either the referring agency, if any or the member agency and shall include as a minimum the following:
(a) Orders of court commitment or written agreement with parents, guardians, or legal custodians.
(b) Completion of a physical examination by a licensed physician, or report of such examination per-
formed within twelve (12) weeks prior to admission.
(c) Birth certificate.
(d) School records or educational history.
(e) Social history of the child, his family and other significant persons.
(f) Any other information required by the member agency.
(2) If the placement is other than by court commitment, each child served by a member agency shall be covered by a written contract executed at the time of admission or prior thereto between the member agency and the parent, legal guardian or person having legal custody of the child. Such person shall be given a copy of the contract at the time of execution. The facility shall retain the original and a copy shall be provided to FACCCA within ten (10) days after the child enters the member agency. Each contract shall at minimum:
(a) Enumerate the basic services and accommodations provided by the member agency.
(b) State that the member agency is a Type II facility under the provisions of section 409.176, Florida
(c) Contain the address and telephone number of FACCCA.
(3) ) Contain the written policies on discipline, control and punishment, including methods of protecting children or others when a child is out of control and his behavior is likely to endanger himself, other persons or property. If separation from others is used as a control measure, the facility shall provide an unlocked, lighted, well ventilated room of at least fifty (50) square feet and within hearing distance of a staff member. The time limit for isolation shall not exceed sixty (60) minutes. No mechanical restraints may be used.
(4) A statement regarding the disciplinary policies and practices of the agency shall be included in the placement agreement and signed by the parents, guardian, or agency having legal custody of each child in residence.
(5) Disciplinary policies shall be in writing, approved by the board and shall be a part of orientation and staff training programs. Disciplinary action shall be documented in the child's record, signed by the person administering the discipline and reviewed by the executive in charge of the member agency.
(6) Not only shall the parent, legal guardian or person having legal custody of the child being admitted to the member agency be advised in advance and in writing of the disciplinary procedures and policies of the member agency, but a clear statement of such procedures shall be included in the written contract entered into between the member agency and parent, legal guardian or person having legal custody of said child.
SECTION 5. RELIGIOUS AND SPIRITUAL TRAINING.
(1) The policy of the member agency regarding religious training must be clearly defined, must be in
writing and available for the information of those considering the placement of children in the agency.
(2) In addition to the information submitted under (1) above, a copy of the statement of faith of FACCCA shall also be given to prospective parents, guardians, or agencies having legal custody.
SECTION 6. WORK AND RECREATION.
(1) A member agency shall not depend upon the work of resident children for the financial operation of the facility. Choirs, singing groups, children giving testimonies in front of church groups, civic groups or other, whether or not a freewill offering is taken, is not to be considered as "work."
(2) Work may be done by the children in the operation and maintenance of a member agency's facility, but such work shall be appropriate to the age, health, and abilities of the individual child and shall not interfere with the child's time for school, study period, play, sleep, normal community contacts or visits from the child’s family.
(3) Recreational activities shall provide a balance between active and restful, group and individual, and physical and mental activities.
(4) Adequate supervision shall be provided for all recreational activities involving risk, particularly swimming and contact sports. Constructed swimming pools shall be fenced in and whenever they are not in use under supervision, they shall be locked.
(5) Church groups and others with similar philosophies are to be encouraged to visit the facility to help develop interpersonal relationships.
ARTICLE X - BUILDINGS, GROUNDS, AND EQUIPMENT
SECTION I. ZONING LAWS, ETC.
Member agencies shall comply with all applicable state and local zoning, fire, sanitation codes and building regulations.
SECTION 2. STAFF HOUSING.
If housing of staff is separate from those of the children, it shall be close enough to allow for proper supervision. Such housing shall provide for privacy and comfort and be maintained in a state of cleanliness and repair.
SECTION 3. INDOOR AND OUTDOOR RECREATIONAL AREAS.
Such areas shall be provided with equipment and safety measures designed for the needs of the resident children according to their age and physical and mental condition.
SECTION 4. SAFETY
Each member agency shall provide for the safety of resident children, including the following:
(1) Swimming pools and hazardous areas shall be supervised at all times when they are in use.
(2) Safeguards shall be established for all hazardous equipment and children shall be prohibited from the use of such equipment unless it is included in planned and supervised work experience.
SECTION 5. FIRE REGULATIONS.
(1) All member agencies must be inspected annually by an official of the local fire department or persons trained by the Office of the State Fire Marshall in fire prevention and safety in accordance with state or local ordinances and codes. A report of the inspection and approval must be on file with FACCCA prior to the issuance of a certificate or re-registration.
(2) Procedures for fire and other emergency situations including the route of evacuation shall be in writing, shall be posted in conspicuous places, and shall be reviewed with staff and children on a regular basis.
(3) Fire drills shall be held no less than monthly and reports shall be on file.
(4) Hallways, stairs, and exit areas shall be well lighted and kept clean for a safe exit.
SECTION 6. VENTILATION AND LIGHTING.
The member agency shall provide ventilation and lighting in all buildings sufficient for the health and well- being of all children within its care.
RESOLUTION: Passed March 21, 2003
Whereas, the office space and personnel and staffing of FACCCA State Headquarters is limited and, Whereas, it is not required that these records be held in perpetuity. Therefore, be it resolved that intake and discharge records related to children in member agencies required by FS 409.176, and personnel records, and background screening of staff required by FS 409.176, and registration records required by FS 409.176 may be destroyed after three (3) years and Whereas, FACCCA recommends that its member agencies maintain a permanent register of former children in residence and former staff.
For assistance or additional information please contact
Florida Association of
Christian Child Caring Agencies, Inc.
P.O. Box 8094
Seminole, Florida 33775
Office(727) 391-3671, Fax (727) 683-9339