Years later, Michigan child welfare still under judge’s eye

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DETROIT (AP) — Michigan’s child-welfare system remains under court oversight, 11 years and millions of dollars after a lawsuit challenged the way the state takes care of neglected or abused kids.

Michigan has made improvements in many areas, including faster adoptions and the return of children to families from foster care. But there will be no exit from federal court without consistent performance in a wide variety of categories. They include caseloads per-worker, health care and education.

The case could stretch past 2018 and be handed to a new governor — the third since the lawsuit was filed in 2006. Herman McCall, the new director of the Children’s Services Agency, says his goal is to “get out as quickly as possible.”

Michigan has paid $14 million to court-appointed experts who track progress.

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