New Workers

Child Welfare Foundations Training (CWTA X100)

Child Welfare Foundations Training (CWFT or "Foundations") is designed for new child welfare and child protection workers. The Foundations curriculum is a comprehensive, blended learning experience staggered over time for workers to further integrate knowledge and skills into practice. It provides knowledge to skills application, combining web based modules and classroom experience. Facilitated classrooms are scheduled using a cohort model to enable networking and professional development. Foundations training is only for new county and tribal workers and is assigned by a supervisor or tribal leader through the Training Portal. eLearning modules are available to workers or supervisors who need a refresher on Foundation content. To see the specific dates involved with this Cohort, select “Register.” Participants must be able to attend all of the dates and times within a specific cohort.

Note: If you are not a new worker and want ICWA/MIFPA training, register for ICWA/MIFPA Ongoing Worker Training (CWTA X212), which is listed in the Specialty Courses below.

Specialty Courses

Case Planning (CWTA X211)

Participants will utilize strengths-based strategies in case planning with complex families in the child welfare system. Participants will complete goals and tasks for Child Protective Services and Out-of-Home Placement Plans. Intended Audience: Experienced workers who have not taken Foundations training since January 2021.

Collaborative Safety - Advanced Practice (CWTA X208)

This training is designed for child protection staff. The goal is to provide a framework of system safety. Learners will engage in a comprehensive and holistic introduction to human factors and system safety. Participants learn how to integrate safety science concepts into daily work with respect to unique roles. In addition, administrative rules and legislative mandates are considered.

Domestic Violence Co-Occurrence: Partnering and Engaging Parents (CWTA X209)

This training will address crucial aspects of best practice in child welfare and domestic violence co-occurrence cases. Training will include historical social context setting and practice application, focusing on strengths-based practice. Partnering with non-offending parents and engaging offenders in accountability and change. In particular, participants will utilize two key protocols and practice applying them in scenario-based exercises to help build skills to enhance field work. Intended Audience: Experienced workers who have not taken Foundations training since January 2021.

Family Group Decision Making: Overview and Facilitation (CWTA X202)

The goal of this training is to introduce learners to the Family Group Decision Making (FGDM) process, and to understand how to work with families/youth involved with the child welfare system. An overview of the principles and phases of FGDM, including which cases are appropriate for referral to the FGDM process, is provided. Individuals will learn the specific skills, strategies, and techniques fundamental to facilitating and coordinating FGDM meetings in the context of child welfare. The training will include a review of the history, philosophy, and practice elements of FGDM.

Human Trafficking and Sexually Exploited Youth: Basic Training for Child Welfare (CWTA X205)*

At this time this course is only offered for child welfare and child protection workers. The training allows trainees to gain knowledge of trafficking and exploitation, and to develop skills pertinent to the child welfare response to youth and families impacted by trafficking and exploitation. The goal of this training is to provide staff with the knowledge and skills to: identify trafficking, identify exploitation, identify youth at-risk of trafficking or exploitation, assess and respond to potential trafficking and exploitation of youth, and coordinate with partners in meeting the needs of youth and families; and demonstrate culturally responsive practice. Intended Audience: Experienced workers who have not completed Foundations training (since 2020) or SEY x203 or x204 (since 2019).

ICWA/MIFPA Ongoing Worker Training (CWTA X212)

This training is brought to you by the University of Minnesota Duluth Tribal Training and Certification Partnership (TTCP). This is an introductory course to the basics of the history of ICWA and application of ICWA and MIFPA. We have an education team comprised of several community trainers that come from University of Minnesota Duluth's MSW faculty and instructors, the Center for Regional and Tribal Child Welfare Studies instructors and researchers; tribal child welfare workers, county child welfare ICWA specialists, urban ICWA workers, individuals with lived experience, the MN GAL program, and elders. Your education team will include a mixture of individuals representing these varied backgrounds.

Legal Practice Skills (CWTA X201)

The goal of this course is for case workers to learn about their roles and responsibilities when involved in child protection legal proceedings and collaborating with courtroom professionals. Federal and Minnesota law requires county agencies to engage in reasonable/active efforts to support families involved in the child welfare system. Learn how focusing on family’s cultures and strengths can be beneficial. In addition, gain in-depth knowledge of how to prepare for court hearings and prepare proper documentation and acquire tips for testifying at trials.

Responsive Child Welfare Practice with LGBTQ Youth (CWTA X210)

The goal of this training is to introduce best practices when working with lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, queer, and questioning (LGBTQ) youth. LGBTQ youth are over-represented in child welfare systems and have been subjected to historical discrimination and oppression contributing to vulnerability and challenges. This training is intended to increase the awareness, knowledge, skills and abilities of social workers and supervisors to work effectively with this unique population through self-reflection, data, resource sharing, and interactive activities.

Signs of Safety + Signs of Safety: Three Month Review (CWTA X215)

First, learners will attend an introductory workshop that will cover the basic principles, skills, and tools of Signs of Safety (SOS). This will include, but not be limited to: A Signs of Safety overview and brief history; Appreciative Inquiry; The Questioning Approach; Harm and Danger Statements and Safety Goals; Three Houses, Safety House; Mapping; and Safety Planning and Safety Networks.

Then 3-months later, learners will attend a 4-hour review course that provides an opportunity for the participants to consult and improve their practice of the Signs of Safety techniques.

Please note - the three month review course is included so be mindful of the dates when registering.

Sexually Exploited Youth Overview (CWTA X203)*

This course will provide an overview of human trafficking and sexual exploitation of children in Minnesota, including identifying risk factors, red flags, and best practices for working with Sexually Exploited Youth. Participants will learn the Department of Human Services’ guidance on responding to Sexually Exploited Youth within Minnesota’s Child Welfare System in the context of legislative efforts including Public Law 114-22, Justice for Victims of Trafficking Act, and Minnesota’s Safe Harbor Law and No Wrong Door Model.

Sexually Exploited Youth Human Trafficking Child Welfare Response (CWTA X204)*

Participants will learn the Department of Human Services’ guidance on responding to Sexually Exploited Youth within Minnesota’s Child Welfare System in the context of legislative efforts including Public Law 114-22, Justice for Victims of Trafficking Act, and Minnesota’s Safe Harbor Law and No Wrong Door Model. Sexually Exploited Youth Overview (CWTA X203) is the prerequisite for this course.

Structured Decision Making (CWTA X200)

This training will refresh the professional's knowledge, deepen the application of safety-focused practice utilizing the Structured Decision Making (SDM) safety and risk assessments, and strengthen the connection between the safety assessment and safety planning. Additional outcomes include understanding the "why" behind the SDM assessments, how to leverage the tool within consult teams, and connect engagement skills with assessments. Participants will be expected to bring applicable practice experiences.

*All Minnesota county and tribal staff with child protection duties are required to complete training on sex trafficking and the sexual exploitation of youth. If you have questions about if this applies to you or if you have met the requirement, we have updated our information about this legislative requirement. Contact the Training Academy if you still have questions.

Self-Paced Courses

National Adoption Competency Mental Health Training Initiative (NTI) CW Professionals (CWTA X401)

The National Adoption Competency Mental Health Training Initiative (NTI) is a self-paced online training designed to enhance the capacity of child welfare professionals to better understand and address the mental health and developmental needs of children moving to or having achieved permanency through adoption or guardianship. The state-of-the-art, evidence-informed, standardized training provides casework and clinical practices to promote child well-being and family stability. At the end of the training, learners will receive a downloadable certificate of completion.

Note for new workers taking Foundations: new county and tribal workers who are enrolled in Foundations (starting with Cohort 98) and haven’t completed NTI, need to register for the Child Welfare Professionals track. It must be completed by the end of Classroom 4. Learners will be required to upload their NTI certificate of completion into their Foundations course in order to receive credit.

National Adoption Competency Mental Health Training Initiative (NTI) CW Supervisors (CWTA X401)

NTI for Child Welfare Supervisors is a 25 hour web-based training that focuses on case work practices and professional skills for staff across the child welfare continuum to promote child well-being, permanency and family stability for children living with foster, adoptive or guardianship families. Child Welfare Supervisors will receive a “Supervisor Coaching and Activity Guide” to support staff in applying learning to daily practice.

Mandated Reporter Training (CWTA X101)

This 45 minute training is designed for child welfare professionals identified by law who must make a report if they have reason to believe that maltreatment of a child has occurred. The course you select below will depend on your job title and responsibilities. Learn more...

Additional Courses

The following courses are not scheduled through the Training Portal. Instructions are included in the course descriptions.

Foster Parent College

As an extension of the relationship between the Minnesota Child Welfare Training Academy (MNCWTA) and the Minnesota Department of Human Services (DHS), the Training Academy offers Minnesota families, counties, and tribes free access to curriculum and resources developed by the nationally recognized Foster Parent College (FPC). FPC provides innovative, research-based, and interactive courses to give foster, adoptive, and kinship parents the knowledge and tools they need. The content is CASA approved, endorsed by the National Foster Parent Association, and developed by experts in the fields of parenting, social work, pediatrics, psychology, psychiatry, and education. Learn more…

Qualified Individual Training (CWTA X400)

The Minnesota Child Welfare Training Academy (MNCWTA) is pleased to announce the availability of a new training opportunity that is designed to help reduce the number of children in child care institutions. In support of the Family First Prevention Services Act (FFPSA or Family First), training is now available to prepare clinicians and community members to become Qualified Individuals (QIs). QIs will determine whether or not a child’s/youth’s needs can be met within their family or family foster home with community services rather than being placed in a child care institution, known as a Qualified Residential Treatment Program (QRTP). Learn more… If you have questions about the QI training or want to express your interest in participating, email