Independent Learning

Independent learning

CASA of DET volunteers are required to complete a minimum of 12 hours of in-service training each calendar year in order to stay up to date on new information, services, policies and legislation. In-service training credit can be earned through a variety of different delivery methods, including attending workshops, watching videos, and reading articles, and should be related to their role as a CASA volunteer. Be sure to speak to your case supervisor if would like to know if a certain type of training will qualify for credit.

Attention Court Appointed Special Advocates:  Be sure to enter any continuing education in your personal volunteer file in Optima.  Contact your supervisor if you need instructions or assistance.  Twelve hours of continuing education annually is easy.  Just remember to enter it in Optima, and your case supervisor will approve it.

Netflix: Girls Incarcerated: Young and Locked Up – There are two seasons (8 episodes each) and each episode is approximately 45 minutes (.75 CE credits each!).
Follows a group of teens in the juvenile system.  *Rated MA. (Language and other mature content)

Netflix: The Trials of Gabriel Fernandez – 6 episodes. These vary between 45 minutes (.75 CE credit) to an hour (1 CE credit) in length. Follows the death of a young boy and the criminal proceedings for both the parents and the CPS workers who failed to protect him.  *Rated MA. (Language and other mature content)

Disney+: Safety – 2 hours (2 CE credits). It’s inspired by a true story of a Clemson football player who has to raise his 11year old brother to keep him out of foster care while their mom completes rehab.  *Rated PG

Hallmark Now: Christmas Princess – 1 hour, 26 minutes (1.5 CE Credits). Inspired by true events about a high school girl who overcomes her difficult past (neglect/abuse of her and her siblings prior to adoption) to become one of the elite Rose Parade Princesses.  *Rated G

Losing Isaiah – 1 hour, 46 minutes (2 CE Credits) *Rated R

Netflix: You Are My Home 1 hour, 32 minutes (1.5 CE Credits)
Separated from her family due to immigration laws, a young girl finds herself in the care of a heartbroken woman who faces her own struggles.  *Rated PG

Prime Video: The Fosters – There are five seasons (20-22 episodes each) and each episode is approximately 45 minutes (.75 CE credits each!).
Follows the lives of the members of the Foster family led by lesbian couple Stef and Lena, a cop and school vice-principal respectively, who raise one biological and four adopted children
in San Diego, California.  *Rated TV-14.

PBS Frontline: Growing Up Poor In America (click on title to link to video) 1 hour (1 CE credit) Their families were already struggling to make ends meet. Then came COVID.

Aged Out: Finding Home (1 CE credit) Take a peek into the lives of youth who were in The Possibilities Project, a privately funded program for 18-25 year olds who have “aged out” of the traditional foster care system in Virginia. Learn about the collaborative efforts of advocacy groups and families as they try to change the system to improve the lives of youth aging out of foster care and possibly onto the streets. (Focuses on a project in Virginia but discusses challenges common in all locales.)

I am Somebody’s Child; The Regina Louise Story – 1 hour, 27 min (1.5 CE Credits) *Rated TV-14
Regina navigates through over 30 foster homes and psychiatric facilities before age 18. But there’s one woman who believes in her. Based on a true story.

Foster 1 hour, 53 minutes (2 CE Credits) *Rated TV-14  This documentary looks at the moving stories behind the largest county child protection agency in the U.S. Filmmakers spent four years following judges, social workers, families, a foster mother and some of the youth caught up in this system.

CASA Approved On-Line Training

Watch the Fetal Alcohol Syndrome Disorder video series to learn more about FASD. 

DFPS training is available on how to recognize and report child abuse. The self-paced training is available on the DFPS website at:

Texas CASA |Resources for Volunteers

National CASA Association | Advocacy Resources for Volunteers and Staff

Texas Health Steps:
Change the format to “course” and you’ll see a variety of course options ranging from 1 to 2 hours.
Texas Health Steps’ award-winning online program offers FREE CE courses. Topics that would be appropriate for CASA CE credits would include those such as Childhood and Adolescent Depression, Childhood Anxiety Disorders, High-Risk Behaviors in Young People, Interpersonal Youth Violence, Recognizing, Reporting, and Preventing Child Abuse, Promoting Adolescent Health, Trauma-Informed Care for Children in Foster Care, and
Youth Suicide: Addressing Risks, Plans and Behaviors.

Texas CASA: Addressing Issues of Grief and Loss (click on title to link) 1 hour (1 CE Credit)
Webinar presented by Adam Robe, CEO, Foster Care Alumni of America and Speaker/Trainer/Author at Robe Communications, Inc. How can you help a foster child cope with the inevitable grief and loss they experience just by coming into care? This presentation offers specific and practical strategies and insights to strengthen your advocacy for children experiencing grief and loss.

Texas CASA: Behavioral Health Services for Foster Children under Medicaid (click on title to link)  1 hour (1 CE Credit)
Webinar presented by Richard LaVallo, Legal Director at Disability Rights Texas. In this webinar, LaVallo covered:

  • Behavioral health services under Medicaid’s Early and Periodic Screening, Diagnostic and Treatment
  • Behavioral health services under the mental health rehabilitative services provisions
  • Due process protections afforded to foster children to ensure the provision of medically necessary behavioral health services
  • How to advocate for behavioral health services on behalf of foster children.YouTube: Growth Mindset: Encouraging Kids through Tough Times (click on title to link)

30 minutes (.5 CE Credit)
Cathy Thompson, founder of Beyond the Classroom, speaks with her guests about growth mindset and easy ways families and educators can incorporate this into everyday conversations.

YouTube: Advocating for Children with Sensory Processing Differences (click on title to link) – 2 hours (2 CE Credits)
CASA of Lexington invited Rebecca Duvall Scott, author of Sensational Kids Sensational Families: Hope for Sensory Processing Differences, to speak about advocating for children with sensory processing differences.

Here are some great resources through Partners Resource Network on childhood development and disability.

Early Intervention for Babies & Toddlers (Ages 0-3)
Overview of Early Intervention
in conjunction with Key Terms to Know in Early Intervention,
Developmental Milestones , and
Texas Health and Human – Early Childhood Intervention Services

Click on the links for this helpful information regarding Early Childhood Intervention Services, which is a system of services that helps babies and toddlers with developmental delays or disabilities.
CE Credit for studying the information in these links = 2 hours

Special Education for Children & Young Adults (3 to 26 years)
10 Basic Steps in Special Education
in conjunction with Key Terms to Know in Special Education,
Questions Often Asked about Special Education,
Evaluating Children for Disability and All about the IEP.

Click on the links for this helpful information regarding Special Education for Children and
how specific needs can be identified and addressed.
CE Credit for studying the information in these links = 2 hours

We get a lot of questions about what to look for in the development of our youngest CASA children and I found these videos that I thought might help identify the growth and development milestones we often look for.

Infant Developmental Milestones Mnemonic Pediatric Nursing NCLEX Review

When Should My Baby… Milestones 0-12 months

Toddler Developmental Milestones Mnemonics | Pediatric Nursing NCLEX Review

Preschooler Growth & Developmental Milestones Pediatric Nursing NCLEX Review

CE Credit for watching all of these three development videos = 2 hours
CE Credit for watching one of these videos = .5 minutes

CASA Approved Book List


CASA Approved Movie/TV List


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