The Children’s Commission (Commission) administers the federal Court Improvement Program (CIP) grants awarded to each state’s highest court by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Administration for Children and Families (ACF).

The basic grant enables state courts to conduct assessments of the role, responsibilities and effectiveness of state courts in carrying out state laws relating to child welfare proceedings. It also allows state courts to make improvements to provide for the safety, well-being, and permanence of children in foster care.

The data grant supports state court data collection and analysis and promotes data sharing between state courts, child welfare agencies and tribes.

The training grant was intended to increase child welfare expertise within the legal community and facilitate cross-training opportunities among agencies, tribes, courts and other key stakeholders.

The Commission is guided in its use of CIP funds by the Commission’s Strategic Plan, which incorporates strategic objectives relevant to each CIP grant received. The Commission’s strategic objectives are organized into five standing committees – Systems Improvement, Legal Practice & Process, Data, Training, and Dual Status Task Force – as well as through other ad hoc committees such as the Legislative and Strategic Planning committees. Each committee is chaired by a Commissioner and members are drawn from the Commission, Collaborative Council, and others in the child protection community.

Decisions to fund grant requests are within the discretion of the Commission and all funding from the commission is subject to the availability of funds. The Commission or its designees will render decisions on applications for funding through grant review conducted at the staff level and then at the committee or commission level to determine how well the proposal meets the Commission’s Strategic Plan. The Commission maintains The receipt of an application for grant funding does not obligate the Commission to fund the grant. The Commission makes no commitment that a grant, once funded, will receive subsequent funding.

Fiscal Year 2021 grant applications will be available at the link below. Applications must be submitted to the Commission by August 3, 2020. *Update: The grant application deadline is August 26, 2020.*

Grant Program Guidelines and Instructions

Grant Application

If you have any questions or to report problems to the grant page, please email Patrick Passmore at

Additional Forms

Application for Texas Identification Number

Direct Deposit Authorization Form