The Tennessee Department of Children’s Services is the state’s public child welfare agency. More than 4,200 employees work all across the state to get children safe, healthy and back on track.
While most of our staff members are caseworkers and investigators, we employ a large contingent of experienced health-care workers, teachers, independent-living specialists, juvenile-justice counselors, attorneys, accountants, researchers, quality-control experts, information technology specialists, and a wide range of other positions that are focused on helping the children and families.

Mission: Act in the best interest of Tennessee’s children and youth.
Vision: Children First!
• Relationships: The child welfare system in Tennessee is a collaborative, aligned system of partners that provides unique interventions to our most vulnerable populations.
• Integrity: Ethics, fairness, and sincerity are the foundation of a successful organization.
• Diversity: Everyone deserves to be treated with respect and to maintain strong connections with their identified community, faith, and culture.
• Learning: Staff should have opportunities and managerial support for continuous professional development and innovation.

Learns and adheres to departmental policy.
Learns to complete all training hours as required by the Department.
Making Decisions and Solving Problems:
Learns to determine if abuse or neglect has occurred, who the abuser is, the level of risk or harm to the child, and the need for a safety plan.
Learns to make recommendations for reunification or termination of parental rights.
Learns to monitor adoptive and foster families to check the compatibility of the child with the family.
Learns to actively listen to concerns to make appropriate referrals.
Learns to coordinate and observe visitations for children in and out-of-home placements to ensure meaningful visitations.
Communicating with Persons Outside Organization:
Learns to prepare to participate and testify in court proceedings.
Learns to recruit adoptive/foster parents.
Getting Information:
Learns to conduct intake interviews with individuals reporting suspected child abuse or neglect.
Learns to conduct interviews with child’s family and collateral contacts (e.g. principals, neighbors, doctors, etc.).
Learns to gather demographic information on the child and family (e.g. Genogram, Ecomap, Lexus Nexus, etc.).
Learns to gather complete and accurate information (e.g. child’s school records, psychological evaluation report or medical examination results.).
Learns to locate and identify natural, formal, and informal supports.
Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards:
Learns to recognize and acknowledge the rights of families.