4500, Evaluating Risk to Children

April 2021

CCR staff must continuously evaluate each operation's performance in terms of risk to children in order to determine appropriate enforcement actions to reduce such risk throughout the duration of an operation's permit. See Appendix 7000-1 Factors to Consider for Enforcement Actions.

Texas Human Resources Code §42.044

 

4510 CLASS Enforcement Recommendations

May 2020

CLASS Enforcement Recommendations help supplement the professional assessments of Child Care Regulation (CCR) staff. CLASS produces Enforcement Recommendations based upon the type, number, weight, and repetition of violations over the course of an operation's two-year compliance history.

Inspectors must continue to independently evaluate risk to children in addition to reviewing CLASS Enforcement Recommendations.

An inspector's decision to select or reject recommended actions on the Enforcement Recommendation Detail page in CLASS must be based on the overall risk to children exhibited by the operation.

 

4511 Options on the Enforcement Recommendation Page in CLASS

May 2020

Procedure

Each option on the Enforcement Recommendation Detail page in CLASS represents an action that Child Care Regulation (CCR) may take with regard to an operation based on the risk presented to children in care. Depending upon the situation, enforcement recommendations may be selected individually or in combination with other enforcement recommendations.

The page layout varies depending upon the operation's current risk as determined by the CLASS Enforcement Recommendations.

No deficiencies cited. Follow monitoring frequency

This means that no action is being taken at this time. Staff do not select this recommended action if any other enforcement recommendations are selected, even if no deficiencies were cited at the current inspection.

Follow-up without inspection

See 4312 Following Up Without an Inspection. This recommendation should be selected when:

  • deficiencies cited do not warrant a physical follow-up; and
  • the operation’s compliance history supports a 12-month monitoring frequency.

When this option is selected, CLASS Follow-Up and Chronology entries must clearly document how the inspector determined compliance. The decision to follow-up with or without an inspection should be based upon the nature of the deficiencies cited at the most recent inspection(s).

Follow-up with inspection

See 4311 Following Up with an Inspection. This action indicates that the inspector will conduct a follow-up inspection to determine compliance on specific deficiencies. Staff select this action any time that deficiencies necessitate a physical follow-up, even if this action is not included in the Recommended Actions Based on Risk. A Scheduled Date is required when this option is chosen. This date should be the date upon which the follow-up inspection is planned.

Plan of Action

See 7350 Plan of Action. A plan of action is a voluntary enforcement action that is a collaborative effort between CCR and an operation. The goal is to develop a plan to reduce risk and help improve the operation’s compliance with CCR statutes, administrative rules, and minimum standards. CCR inspects an operation more frequently during a plan of action to evaluation the operation’s compliance with minimum standards.

Warning letter and follow-up with inspection

See 4330 Sending a Warning Letter and Following Up With an Inspection. A warning letter (Form 2939 should be issued to caution the governing body of a child care operation about the risks identified during recent inspections. The warning letter prompts the operation to resolve patterns of deficiencies in a timely manner and to maintain compliance on an ongoing basis.

The inspector is required to conduct a follow-up inspection with this action, and the date of the follow-up inspection must be scheduled in the Scheduled Date field.

Expedite monitoring inspection

Staff select this action when risk at the operation warrants conducting a monitoring inspection prior to the Next Inspection Due Date from the Enforcement Recommendation.

  • The expedited monitoring inspection is an interim inspection. If the operation does not demonstrate improved compliance at the expedited inspection, staff consider additional action.
  • Scheduled Date is required when this action is chosen. In many cases, if risk warrants an expedited inspection, the date of the expedited inspection should be no more than a few months after the inspection that prompted the action in order to reduce risk.

Evaluation

CCR became unable to impose an evaluation on an operation beginning September 1, 2019.

See 7411 Criteria for Imposing Evaluation.

Probation

Probation is a type of corrective action for which CCR imposes a corrective action plan that is more restrictive and intense than an evaluation. Conditions are imposed beyond the requirements of the minimum standards and the basic permit in order to improve an operation’s compliance with minimum standards and reduce risk at the operation. The duration of probation is 12 months and CCR conducts inspections at least monthly to evaluate compliance with minimum standards and the conditions imposed as part of the corrective action plan. CCR may recommend imposing probation if circumstances described in 7110 Circumstances That May Call for Enforcement Action exist and CCR  determines the operation meets criteria outlined in 7412 Criteria for Imposing Probation.

Adverse Amendment

Adverse amendment is a type of adverse action in which an existing permit is voided and the permit is then reissued with new or additional restrictions or conditions. See 7622 Criteria for Imposing an Adverse Amendment.

Involuntary Suspension

In an involuntary suspension, CCR takes away the permit holder's authority to operate for a specific period of time so that deficiencies may be corrected. The operation must close during a suspension. Suspension may be imposed if circumstances described in 7110 Circumstances That May Call for Enforcement Action exist and CCR determines the operation meets criteria outlined in 7623 Criteria for Imposing an Involuntary Suspension.

Injunction

If circumstances at the operation are determined to be so extreme that immediate intervention is warranted (there is substantial risk of immediate harm to the health and safety of children in care), the inspector may make a referral for legal action simultaneously with the mailing of the notice of an intent to deny, revoke, or suspend. See 7742 Injunction.

Denial

Denial is the refusal to grant a permit or an amendment to a permit. The inspector only selects denial as an Enforcement Recommendation if intending to deny a permit amendment, as Enforcement Recommendations are not generated for operations that do not have a full permit. See 7621 Criteria for Imposing a Denial.

Revocation

Revocation is the cancellation of a permit, which requires the operation to close. Revocation may be imposed if circumstances described in 7110 Circumstances That May Call for Enforcement Action exist and CCR determines the operation meets criteria outlined in 7624 Criteria for Imposing a Revocation.

 

4512 Acting on Enforcement Recommendations

May 2020

The inspector has five days from the date CLASS generated the Enforcement Recommendation to select one or more recommended actions from the Enforcement Recommendation Detail page in CLASS. When acting upon an Enforcement Recommendation, the inspector must:

  • review the action that triggered the recommendation;
  • consider all relevant compliance history for the operation;
  • consult with his or her supervisor if necessary; and
  • select one or more recommended actions based on risk.

See 4500 Evaluating Risk to Children.

 

4512.1 Documenting Enforcement Recommendations

May 2020

Any combination of actions can be selected from the three categories on the Enforcement Recommendation Details page. The three categories are:

  1. Recommended Actions Based on Risk;
  2. Actions Not Requiring Supervisory Review; and
  3. Actions Requiring Supervisory Review.

Actions in the Recommended Actions Based on Risk section correspond with the risk level of the Recommended Monitoring Frequency.

Actions in the Actions Not Requiring Supervisory Review or Actions Requiring Supervisory Review sections correspond with either a higher or lower risk level than is associated with the Recommended Monitoring Frequency. Choosing an action in one of these sections will change the Recommended Monitoring Frequency and the due date of the associated inspection To-Do.

If the inspector selects an alternative action (those listed in the Actions Not Requiring Supervisory Review and Actions Requiring Supervisory Review categories), the inspector must also:

  1. choose the most appropriate reason from the Reason for Alternative Recommendation drop-down menu; and
  2. document the reasons to support the enforcement action decision in the Licensing Specialist Comments field.

Also see the CLASS Enforcement Recommendations Tip Sheet on the CCR SharePoint page for additional information.

 

4512.11 When to Allow CLASS to System Close the Recommendation

May 2020

If the inspector agrees with the recommended monitoring frequency on the Enforcement Recommendation Detail page in CLASS, but does not find it appropriate to select an enforcement action in the Recommended Actions Based on Risk section, then the inspector should take no action and allow the enforcement action recommendation to "system close."

Within five days of receiving the recommended action, the inspector documents in a CLASS Chronology (under the category type "Recommendation") why the inspector did not take the recommended enforcement action. The documentation must include:

  • why the inspector agrees with the recommended monitoring frequency; and
  • what action(s) will be taken even though they were not noted on the Enforcement Recommendation Detail page.

Also see the CLASS Enforcement Recommendations Tip Sheet located on the CCR SharePoint page for additional information.

 

4512.2 Actions Requiring Supervisory Approval

May 2020

If the inspector selects any recommended action from the Actions Requiring Supervisory Review section of the Enforcement Recommendation Detail page in CLASS, the following actions must be taken within five days of the selection:

  • the inspector must staff the inspector’s assessment of risk and the selected recommendations with the supervisor; and
  • the supervisor reviews the Enforcement Recommendation Details page to:
    • ensure that the selections made on the Enforcement Recommendation Details page accurately reflect the decisions made during the consultation;
    • remove or add check box selections (or both), if necessary, to only include recommended actions that will be implemented; and
    • describe what actions the inspector originally selected, what (if any) changes were made to recommendations selected, and why in the Supervisor Comments field.

After the supervisor enters the decision in CLASS, the inspector has an additional five days to review the Enforcement Recommendation Details page and initiate the approved actions.