The Tennessee Accountability Center, housed at the Center for State Child Welfare Data at Chapin Hall, was established under the terms of the Settlement Agreement in the Brian A. vs. Haslam class action lawsuit. The Brian A. lawsuit was filed by Children’s Rights, Inc. in 2000 and settled in 2001. Since that time, the Department of Children's Services worked to fulfill its obligations under the Settlement Agreement and a federal judge removed federal oversight in 2017.
The mission of the Tennessee Accountability Center (AC) is two-fold. First, the AC will provide evidence needed by stakeholders to understand what happens to children when they are placed in foster care in Tennessee. In turn, stakeholders will understand how the Department of Children’s Services’ efforts to serve children can be reinforced. Second, the AC, through its work with the Department, will strengthen the systems the Department uses to monitor its performance going forward, beyond the 18-month term of the AC.
The AC completes two reports each year. One is a targeted report to focus on areas of interest to the Department and the other is a comprehensive report that includes measures of outcomes, process, quality, and capacity. All reports can be found on the Tennessee Accountability Center's site.