Mich. Gets Flexibility In Helping Troubled Kids

DETROIT (AP) – The state of Michigan and lawyers representing needy children have reached a new agreement on how to improve foster care and protective services.

A federal judge in Detroit approved the deal Monday. The state says it now gets more flexibility in complying with a 2008 consent decree. At that time, then-Gov. Jennifer Granholm pledged to spend millions to help children in foster care and protective services, but her administration repeatedly got poor marks.

The new agreement extends certain deadlines to reduce the number of caseloads per worker. About 1,300 child-welfare workers retired last year, forcing the state to go on a hiring and training blitz.

In court, a group that sued the state to force changes complimented Gov. Rick Snyder and Human Services Director Maura Corrigan.

Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.

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