Applications for Attorney Scholarships for the ABA Center on Children and the Law’s 2021 Parent Representation Conference have now closed. Click on the dropdown menu below for more information.

Children's Commission regularly offers scholarships to qualifying attorneys to attend state and national conferences. Scholarships typically reimburse attorneys for conference registration fees, and occasionally, for travel-related expenses.

Generally, to meet the criteria for all scholarships, the applicant must:

  • be currently representing DFPS or taking appointments on a CPS docket;
  • be in good standing with the State Bar of Texas;
  • be in good standing with their appointing or presiding judge; and
  • commit to completing a post-event survey from the Children’s Commission, in addition to the pre-event survey portion contained in the Commission scholarship application of their choice.

Preference may be given to attorneys who have not received scholarships from the Children’s Commission in the past 1-2 years. Other considerations include, but are not limited to, geographic diversity of scholarship recipients and whether the applicant has support from his or her presiding or appointing judge.

For all scholarships, the Children's Commission determines scholarship criteria and deploys an application process that includes pre- and post-conference evaluations to identify or confirm the knowledge gained from the training, new practices which awardees plan to implement, and/or a current practice which they plan to change. Surveys also inquire about additional topics of interest to help inform planning for future training.

Please visit the sections below for more information on state and national conferences in child welfare. Please note, the Children’s Commission may not offer scholarships to every training listed. For questions about scholarships to this year’s events, please email CCScholarships@txcourts.gov.

Information on scholarships will be available on this webpage and also through the Children’s Commission’s Resource Letters for Judges and Attorneys. If you do not currently receive Resource Letters from the Children’s Commission, please link here to sign up today!

The 3rd Annual Advanced Child Protection Law Course was hosted virtually on April 1-2, 2021.

For more information, please visit the Child Protection Law Section web page.

The ABA Center on Children and the Law has announced it will host the National Parent Representation Conference virtually on May 20-21, 2021. Two half-day sessions will be dedicated to advocating for parents in the child welfare system. For more information, please visit the ABA National Conferences web page.

Scholarship Criteria:

The Children’s Commission will provide a limited number of reimbursement scholarships to qualified attorneys to attend the 2021 National Parent Representation Conference on May 20-21, 2021.This scholarship will be awarded in the form of reimbursement of virtual registration fees ($130) to attend the conference. Applicants who meet all of the criteria detailed below will be considered on a first-come, first-served basis for a scholarship. Early applications are strongly encouraged.

To meet the criteria for this scholarship, the applicant must:

  • currently represent DFPS or take appointments on a CPS docket,
  • be in good standing with the State Bar of Texas,
  • be supported by their primary judge, and
  • commit to completing a post-event survey from the Children’s Commission.

Judges with applicants from their jurisdiction will be notified by the Children’s Commission and asked to confirm that the applicant currently represents DFPS or takes appointments on their CPS docket.

Attendance Policy:

This scholarship is funded by a federal grant, which is managed by the Supreme Court of Texas Children's Commission. The Children's Commission is responsible for reporting attendance in support of the grant expenses. All applicants will be expected to participate in the virtual training and to provide detailed responses to a post-event survey from the Children’s Commission thereafter.

Applicants will be asked to verify their commitment to participate in the virtual training to the Supreme Court of Texas Children’s Commission.

Awardees are required to notify the Children’s Commission in writing and in advance if they can no longer participate in the training.

Reimbursement Policy:

This is a reimbursement scholarship of virtual registration fees ($130) to attend the conference. If awarded a scholarship, the Commission will provide reimbursement for registration costs only after the training has ended. All scholarship awardees are responsible for their own registration and covering registration costs before the training.

Please note, you must submit a copy of the CLE certificate provided by the ABA upon completion of the training in order to receive reimbursement. The ABA’s CLE certificate is required by the Children’s Commission as supporting documentation of attendance only. The Commission will not submit on behalf of awardees for CLE purposes.

The Commission’s travel reimbursement form is available on our website.

Application Link and Deadline to Apply:

The application period closed on Wednesday, April 28, 2021. The Children's Commission will notify all applicants of their scholarship status no later than May 10, 2021.

The AFL Course offers a day-long Child Abuse and Neglect Workshop each year during the annual State Bar of Texas Advanced Family Law MCLE. This one-day training covers current topics of interest to Texas attorneys who practice on the CPS docket.

 2021 Dates and Locations:

The State Bar of Texas Child Abuse and Neglect (CAN) One-Day Workshop is a part of the Advanced Family Law CLE which is currently scheduled   on August 2-5, 2021 in San Antonio, Texas. The CAN Workshop typically occurs as part of the Wednesday agenda, and is currently scheduled for August 4, 2021 in San Antonio.  Details for the CAN One-Day Workshop will be provided as it becomes available. The Children’s Commission plans to work with conference organizers to offer scholarships for this  event and hopes to announce the application process very soon. Please look for announcements from the Children’s Commission and check back here for updates.

If you do not currently receive announcements from the Children’s Commission and would like to be added to our electronic distribution list for our Resource Letters for Judges and Attorneys, please link here to sign up today!

The NACC’s 44th National Child Welfare Law Conference will be held in a dual-format this year: on site in Denver, Colorado on August 14-15, 2021 and virtually on August 16-18, 2021. More information is available on the NACC website.

The Children’s Commission hopes to announce the application process very soon. Please look for announcements from the Children’s Commission and check back here for updates. If you do not currently receive announcements from the Children’s Commission and would like to be added to our electronic distribution list to receive Resource Letters for Judges and Attorneys, please link here to sign up today!

Attorney Scholarships for State and National Certifications

The Children’s Commission offers financial support to those attorneys and judges seeking certification as a National Association of Counsel for Children (NACC) Child Welfare Legal Specialist (CWLS) by way of partial reimbursement of their application fee for those applicants who successfully pass their CWLS exam. A discount is also available for those current CWLS who choose to recertify.

Please note the following details regarding CWLS certification:

  • Attorneys and judges will be required to pay the application fee in order to take the exam. Due to the confidential nature of the application process, verification from NACC of applicant information is not available. After examination results are published, those who become Child Welfare Law Specialists will be eligible to receive reimbursement of 75% of their examination fee from the Children’s Commission. Please email Commission.Accounting@txcourts.gov to request additional information about reimbursement. 

Please note the following details regarding CWLS recertification:

  • Recertification is required every five years. The recertification process is identical to the initial application process, minus the writing sample and exam. After successfully becoming recertified, Texas attorneys and judges can return to this page to complete and return the reimbursement form and request reimbursement of 75% of their CWLS recertification fee from the Children's Commission. Please email Commission.Accounting@txcourts.gov to request additional information about reimbursement. 

For more information about becoming a CWLS and related recertification, please see the NACC webpage. Please email any questions to CCScholarships@txcourts.gov.

For more information, please visit the Texas Board of Specialization web page.